After months of work, Oakland North just published my data app about shootings in Oakland in 2011. I worked on the project with Mihir Zaveri for Oakland North; he researched and wrote an incredible story which focused on youth violence in the city.

The app was a fun project to take on. I used the Google Fusion API to build a map that showed shootings and victims by Oakland police beat in heat map style. I then hacked a template to drawn in two separate Google Fusion tables with data on victim’s age and race/ethnicity that displayed in graph form based on the police beat the user clicks on, updating dynamically.

It was a cool project to work on, and I finally got a taste of using javascript to create incredible data interactives. I think the next goal is to do something like this without relying on the Google Fusion API, merely because of the pageview limit of 25,000 a day Google has (not a problem for Oakland North, but for larger publications this approach may not work).

Also, if I could improve on this I would integrate an address search component to allow a person to find out quickly what police beat they lived in or where a place of interest was on the map.