Tuesday, 30 October 2012

#Sandy's impact on NYC measured by Web 3.0 technology

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UPDATE 1:00PM New York showing Trending sites in Lower Manhattan are back.  This map (made with foursquare trending map) shows that in a matter of a few days trending sites have returned fully in Lower Manhattan, indicating that services are likely almost fully restored.  Foursquare not only requires mobile access, but also transport to get to locations and businesses to be opened.

Lower Manhattan has returned to normal on Foursquare
UPDATE 4AM November 4: Lower Manhattan returns!  In something we have not seen for 5 days this image (made with foursquare trending map) shows trending over night in New York City, with Lower Manhattan going from a dead zone to the most active area in New York.  Clearly recovery of mobile service, power, and community has come a long way.

Over Night Foursquare trending in New York City shows Lower Manhattan has returned to life.
Also Sam Biddle at Gizmo has published a graphic that confirms our findings, but has not yet caught up to the return of Upper Manhattan.  I will space you the blinking animated gif and just show you Gizmo's before and after graphic.



UPDATE: 2:30 PM Foursquare has rapidly come back today.  The Foursquare trending map shows the Lower Manhattan has seen a return of mobile services.  Also clearly a lot of businesses are open for people to check in to. foursquare trending map

Lower Manhattan has now fully returned to activity on Foursquare trending Map

Twitter Tracking in the two Manhattans

Tracking the number of geo tagged tweets per hour in a 250 meter radius in 43rd Street Central Manhattan.  Tweets are retiring to very high levels.

Lower Manhattan is seeing rising tweets, but still only a fraction of the number of tweets per hour as Upper Manhattan as the city recovers in a two track pace.

UPDATE: Nov 3 Noon We are starting to see the first foursquare trending from Lower Manhattan since Sandy hit New York.  Will be interesting to see how quickly social community takes to recover.


Downtown NYC starts to come back to life on Foursquare on November 3
foursquare trending map
UPDATE: Nov 2 Noon.  We continue to see a pronounced difference between upper Manhattan and much of Brooklyn where people are checking in to normal activities, and Lower Manhattan which is seeing almost no Foursquare checkins and no trending today.  Impacted areas including Chinatown, East Village, Alphabet City, Greenwich Village, and the Financial District including the areas impacted by last years Occupy protests.  What is amazing is many of the areas that were light up on social media by Occupy protests last year are precisely the areas left dark by Sandy.
Foursquare Trending NYC Nov 2 12:20
Areas left silent by Sandy are some of the very areas most active during the Occupy protest last year.  Seems nature has its own designs on New York's future. 

UPDATE 5:30 PM November 1 foursquare trending map continued return to normal activities in Upper Manhattan while Lower Manhattan clearly is still without key infrastructure.
5:30 PM November 1 2012, Upper Manhattan continues to march towards normal life on Foursquare while Lower Manhattan has still almost entirely vanished.

UPDATE 11 AM November 1 foursquare trending map continues to shows a dramatic divide in the recovery of New York, with Lower Manhattan have far greater problems due to the impacts of Sandy.  Odd that the financial district of the world was built on a site that is so vulnerable.

Foursquare Trending mapped in New York showing dramatic difference between Upper and Lower Manhattan still around noon on the first of November. 

UPDATE: 9 AM November 1 foursquare trending map shows there are a lot of people getting in, or trying to get in to Lower Manhattan via the bridges.  Still checkins only in Upper Manhattan.  It will be interesting to see if these people on the bridges can get a mobile signal in Lower Manhattan to check in with?

Nov 1 9 AM NYC Foursquare Trending Map
Nov 1 9 AM NYC Foursquare Trending Map

UPDATE: 5PM October 31  foursquare trending map shows a solid recovery of community activity in upper Manhattan and in Brooklyn, obviously a lot of people are around and about.  But Lower Manhattan is still played with lower tweeting and few Foursquare checkins indicating the impact of poor network coverage, flooding and power outages.

Foursquare Trending Map of New York, 5 pm October 31 2012
Foursquare Trending Map of New York, 5 pm October 31 2012
I saw this map on Facebook, which confirms the same levels of disruption that Foursquare is showing, most impressively Foursquare patterns of usage predicted subway patterns of closure for Nov 1 2012.

Perhaps most impressive is that the patterns of foursquare trending we have seen all day, along with twitter activity, correlate to the patterns of subways closure for November 1 2012.  This means that the data we are seeing coming out of foursquare trending and twitter activity are giving us a clearly accurate picture of damage to the overall infrastructure of New York City.

And a further confirmation of the power of this technology, we have since confirmed that Lower Manhattan has very reduced mobile network coverage, but the graphs we got from foursquare made that obvious hours before we could confirm.


Mon. night flooding from  on the Verizon HQ ground floor, 140 West St., in Lower Manhattan.@VerizonSupport twitpic.com/b8tvov

UPDATE: 12:20 PM October 31, foursquare trending map shows an inequality in New York's recovery after Sandy.  North of Manhattan and Brooklyn shows a strong recovery as seen through Foursquare, but Lower Manhattan looks pretty dead. It may be that flood damage and power outages have been more destruction in the south of Manhattan.

12:20 PM Foursquare Trending in New York City
12:20 PM Foursquare Trending in New York City


UPDATE 10:00 AM October 31 We are seeing a lot of morning tweets at the bridges as we assume people who normally take train and subways are struggling with buses, cabs, bikes and walking in to work.  Still overall New York City, as seen on Foursquare, is clearly coming back to life pretty rapidly.

New York City Foursquare Trending map 10 AM October 31 2012
New York City Foursquare Trending map 10 AM October 31 2012

UPDATE 6:30 PM, New York city definitely seems to be making a fast recovery judging from Foursquare.  People are checking in to businesses all over the city, with the noticeable exception of south Manhattan. People are checking in to bars, gyms, movie theatres and restaurants in large numbers, indicating the touch of the city is up and running and that people are enjoying a day off.


Map of Foursquare Trending in New York City
Map of Foursquare Trending in New York City

UPDATE: 4:00 PM New York makes a rapid recovery.  Though we still see a lack of much activity in south Manhattan, Foursquare is showing a rapid recovery of many businesses in New York. This kind of Web 3.0 monitoring of New York gives a brand new insight in to how an economy of an area may recover from a disaster.  Clearly much of New York is getting back to normal.


4:00 PM Foursquare Trending in New York


UPDATE: 11:30 AM New York time, we have created a few maps of Foursquare checkins to show Sandy's impact can be seen in Foursquare checkins.  We are seeing fewer checkins in New York and Boston than normally, which you can see by comparing it to London.


Foursquare Trending Map for New York after Hurricane Sandy 

Foursquare Trending for Boston Map after Hurricane Sandy 
Chicago Foursquare map
Chicago at the same time, probably the only time more Foursquare venues were trending in Chicago than New York

Foursquare Trending Map at the same time in London, notice the larger number of checkins.


You have to admire the spirit of the people of New York many of whom have created a Foursquare group called aftermathfromthestormpocalypse, probably the most positive sign that things will be back to normal quickly.


Older: It is 8:00 am in New York city.  Normally the city would be coming to life and we would see dozens of venues in foursquare starting to trent.  But just take a look at the New York vs London Foursquare map.  There is not one trending foursquare site in all of New York City right now.  That is an extremely unique event and the impact of Hurricane Sandy.

Social Media map of New York 8:00 AM showing lots of static content but now Fourquare Trending
Social Media map of New York 8:00 AM showing lots of static content but now Fourquare Trending

Social Media map of London at same time showing lots of static and Fourquare Trending
Social Media map of London at same time showing lots of static and Fourquare Trending

Normally at any time, this was taken at midnight, New York will have a large number of Foursquare Venues trending


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