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August 15, 2011

"Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Mappiness"


Wrote Kelly Johnston of the University of Virginia Scholars' Lab, "In the Scholars' Lab, we're all about spatial goodness. We set about converting the qualities of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness into quantities we could visualize through maps. Brainstorming commenced on how best to measure the unmeasurable. Mappiness ensued."

"We calculated a score for Life, for Liberty, and for the Pursuit of Happiness for each county in the continental U.S. and mapped how each county's score deviated from the mean. So our maps highlight extremes, both high and low."

"Life [top] mapped combined male and female Life Expectancy At Birth data for 1999."


"Liberty [above] mapped US Census datasets for 2000 to measure the institutionalized population as a percent of the total population."

"Pursuit of Happiness [below]


mapped the ratio of arts, entertainment, and recreation establishments to the total population from the 2002 US Economic Census."

August 15, 2011 at 04:01 PM | Permalink


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I cry foul with two out of three of these charts.

I'm sure you can guess which two.

Posted by: Rocketboy | Aug 17, 2011 7:41:24 AM

Colorado seems to have a band of gold running down the middle.

Posted by: Joe Peach | Aug 15, 2011 7:59:36 PM

Interesting how lowered life expectancy and lowered happiness are clustered in certain southern states (and, the lead mining belt of Missouri).

Even more interesting that the Colorado Rockies, Salt Lake City area and Montana's Teton / Yellowstone areas have the highest happiness (wtf is there to be happy about in Idaho?).

Posted by: 6.02*10^23 | Aug 15, 2011 4:22:05 PM

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