Friday, 1 March 2013

Mapping language use

There have been several maps published lately that use Twitter data to show what languages are in use where.  Google Earth lends itself nicely to this job for several reasons:

  1. Tweet volumes in an area can be shown by 3D towers - this helps give a better sense of scale than a flat picture (and I'm normally not a fan of 3D)
  2. Each language can be hidden or shown using the Google Earth checkboxes that control layer visibility. If you want to focus in on just French or remove all English, just check the appropriate boxes.
A happy side-effect of planting several "towers" representing different languages in the same spot is that Google Earth shows the most dominant language most clearly.

Here's a screenshot:

If you want to explore the data yourself the Google Earth file is here 

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