Mapping Statistical Data with R

The world of visual and geospatial analysis continues to morph and evolve. So it is with R’s geospatial analysis evolvement. This section is focused on mapping statistical data with R and provides steps you can use to develop Web-based interactive maps in complete HTML structure ready to publish. No coding.

R (more about R) is an open source language and environment for statistical computing and graphics. R has many similarities with the Statistical Analysis System (SAS), but is free … and widely used by an ever increasing user base. R is used throughout the ProximityOne Certificate in Data Analytics course.

For now, in the areas of mapping and geospatial analysis, R is best used in a companion role with Geographic Information System (GIS) software like CV XE GIS. Maybe it will always be that way. R’s features to 1) perform wide-ranging statistical analysis operations and 2) to process and manage shapefiles and relate those and other data to many, many types of data structures are among R’s key strengths.

Mapping with R
The graphic shown below illustrates a Web-based interactive map that has been developed totally using R. The map shows patterns of Census 2010 population for Texas by county. Aside from satellite imagery, which can be added, this application provides the look and feel of a Google maps application. Yet the steps to develop the application are far different and much closer to more traditional GIS software and data structures .. and there are no proprietary constraints. Join us in weekly Data Analytics Lab sessions to learn about developing this type of mapping application and geospatial analysis. See more about this application in narrative below the map.

Create & Publish this Interactive Map or Variation
  … no coding .. see details in Web version of this post.

Click graphic for larger view and details — opens new window with interactive map.. View developed using R.

R generates the final product HTML as shown above. This application illustrates use of a Census countyTIGER/Line shapefile integrated with Census 2010 demographics. Participants in the ProximityOne Data Analytics course learn how to develop the types of maps using a range of TIGER/Line shapefiles from census block to metro to congressional district to state and integrating subject matter from the American Community Survey and many other Federal statistical programs. R and the ProximityOne CV XE GIS tools work together to expand the range of analytics to an unlimited set of possibilities.

Weekly Data Analytics Lab Sessions
Join me in a Data Analytics Lab session to discuss more details about using R for mapping, data management and statistical analysis in context of data analytics.  Learn more about integrating these data with other geography, your data and use of data analytics that apply to your situation.

About the Author
— Warren Glimpse is former senior Census Bureau statistician responsible for innovative data access and use operations. He is also the former associate director of the U.S. Office of Federal Statistical Policy and Standards for data access and use. He has more than 20 years of experience in the private sector developing data resources and tools for integration and analysis of geographic, demographic, economic and business data. Contact Warren. Join Warren on LinkedIn.

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