It's been a while since a new tool really excited me, but BatchGeo is just such a tool! In a prior post I reviewed and discussed how much I like data visualizations, and was even interviewed by the NY Times a number of years ago because of my work in this knowledge domain. Thus, why do I love BatchGeo?
- The software makes mapping data to Google Maps painfully easy!
- The steps to create a data visualization are:
- Copy your data including the column headers from Excel
- Paste that data into BatchGeo
- Click to create your map ... and the basic service is free.
What's even more amazing all the data from your Excel columns will be as close as a mouse click on any geo point. Let's investigate an example ... the most recent results of the Cincinnati Half Marathon. The data elements (i.e. Excel columns) for each runner are:
- Gun Time
- Age Group
- Overall Place
- Division Place
- Sex Place
Obviously, your data could have any fields, but given this service is about mapping ... location should be present (city, state, country, etc). Here is the finished GeoMap (partial screenshot given below). Given most of the competitors were from the Ohio area, drill down into the map to gain a perspective. Once you have the map at a reasonable resolution, click on a few "elements/data points!" The service also incorporates search against all the data in your database.
If you would like to try the service, I've included an excerpt of the marathon database (i.e. 260 records out of the original 1,241 runners). Remember to copy the field headers as well as the Excel data. When you browse to BatchGeo, just paste your data in the large window indicated ... you can't miss it! You then should either click on <Validate & Set Options> or <Map Now>. While you could just click "map now" select the validate option. You don't actually have to validate any data elements, but it does give the option to group your data by any desired variable. Given this service is oriented towards geo mapping, the logical grouping will normally be focused upon some "location variable". I chose "city".
If you want to try other examples, the easiest way to find Excel data is by using Google Advance Search. Use the file drop down to limit your results to <xls> files (i.e. Excel).
- Cincinatti Half Marathon
There are three options for your final output:
- Paid, full private output
- Free, public (and published in BatchGeo's browsable / searchable database)
- Free, private (but viewable by anyone with the url)
And the promised screenshot ... click on image to view full sized.