Monday, April 6, 2009

Using Python to Visualize the 2001 NHTS - Project Scope

This project will work through using Python for visualizing a complex data set to gain insight and understanding. One of my favorite data sets is the US National Household Travel Survey. This survey summarizes demographics and a days worth of driving for 70,000 people over a one year period. The data set is so complex that after about two years of looking at it, I've only just started to find the interesting information contained in it. My initial goals are as follows:
  1. Write pure Python libraries for inputting the data sets and preprocessing the results. I'm going to write everything in pure Python from scratch, rather than use existing tools for two reasons. First I need the exercises to learn Python better. Second, I want my tools for importing the data to reusable under Jython and for use with Blender out of the box.
  2. Use the following tools to visualize information in the NHTS:
  3. I'll be using the following Python distributions:
  4. Create both static and animated visualizations in each tool.
  5. Gain some insight into travel patterns that I did not have before starting this project.
  6. Build some tools for exploring the 2008 release of the NHTS.

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