Posts for Tag: US

Number of Electoral Votes by State in the 59 US Presidential Elections

Posted In: Elections
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How many electoral votes did each state have across two centuries of elections?

This animation shows the number of electoral votes each state had during each of the 59 presidential elections in US history between 1788 and 2020. It’s interesting to see the number of US states and their relative population sizes (in terms of electoral votes) over many different presidential elections. The population is counted every 10 years in the census so if a presidential election occurs between a census, it likely will not see any difference in numbers of electoral votes, unless something else happens (such as addition of a new state to the country).

Instructions
You can use the slider to control the election year to focus on a specific election and toggle the animation by hitting the Start/Stop button. Hovering over each state will tell you the number of electoral votes and the percentage of the total number of electoral votes in that election.

In the elections during and immediately after the US Civil War, we also see some states whose electoral votes for president are not counted (shown in purple). Wyoming, the state with the lowest population in the US, has the highest number of electoral votes per person in the state, while the three most populous states, California, Florida and Texas have the least number of electoral votes per person. Wyoming has four times the number of electors per capita than these 3 states have (i.e. accounting for their population sizes). That will be the subject of another map dataviz.

Here is another map that resizes the US states (i.e. shrink or grow) based on the number of electoral vote so that their electoral power is reflected in its size.

Sources and Tools:

Data on number of electoral votes by state for each election is from Wikipedia. And the visualization was created using javascript and the open source leaflet javascript mapping library.

state borders

Which State Borders the Most Other States?

Posted In: Maps
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Interactive Choropleth of the Number of States That Border Each State

This is a fun little map that shows the number of states that border each state. I’m working on improving the interactivity of maps and this was a good project to try this with. The base map is a choropleth map which color codes each state by the number of states it shares a border with. If you hover over (or touch on mobile) a state, it will highlight the state and show you (and list) the bordering states.

It’s important to note that officially New York and Rhode Island share a water border (between Rhode Island and Long Island, NY) and that Michigan and Minnesota also share a border (in Lake Superior).

Sources and Tools:

Data on state borders was downloaded from state.1keydata.com. And the visualization was created using javascript and the open source leaflet javascript mapping library.

state borders

Videoconferencing popularity before and during coronavirus lockdown

Posted In: Technology
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Zoom has become the primary video conferencing app over the last few months as schools and workplaces increasingly turned to remote learning and meetings.

Since the shelter-in-place orders across the United States due to the coronavirus in early to mid-March, many things have changed about our daily lives. One of the main ones is that schooling and work is being done remotely through video conferencing apps on our computers, tablets and smartphones. Our kids have zoom meetings with their teachers, parents have zoom meetings with our work colleagues and we all have facetime and google hangouts chats with our friends and family.

I remembered just a few year ago Skype was a very popular app to use for video chats, so I wanted to see how Zoom came to be the most popular app. The animated graph above shows the relative search volumes for 5 popular video conferencing apps from January 1 to May 15th (before and during the coronavirus restrictions on travel and gatherings).

This article implies that the reason Zoom had taken over so much is because it is free and easy to use for consumers. Even my tech-challenged mother is doing zoom calls for friends and classes.

Data and Tools:
Data is from google trends analysis of videoconferencing apps. Data is processed in javascript and graphed using the plotly open source graphing library.
zoom popularity

Renewable Electricity Generation in US is Now Greater Than Coal

Posted In: Energy | Environment
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A remarkable thing is happening in the United States and in other places around the world. Partly due to the coronavirus pandemic and partly due to changes in natural gas and renewable energy prices, renewable electricity is now a larger fraction of the US electricity grid than coal. As of early May 2020, the fraction of coal generation of US electricity is about 18% while renewables (hydroelectric, wind, solar and geothermal) account for nearly 20%.

For the entire year of 2019, coal accounted for about 24.2% of US electricity generation, while renewables accounted for 17%.4. And in 2018, coal was 28.4% and renewables were 16.8%. When you include nuclear (not technically a renewable resource, but zero emissions of greenhouse gases), about 42% of US electricity generation in 2020 comes from zero carbon sources, while fossil fuels make up the remaining 68%.

This is good news because renewables produce little to no pollution that contributes to urban air quality, health issues and climate change. Coal is by far the worst electricity generation source when it comes to air pollution that impacts human health and climate change. So this shift away from coal and towards renewables is very good news.

Here’s the same graph but showing instead the fraction of electricity from each source (you can hover over the graph to get daily values).

Source and Tools

Data is downloaded from the US Department of Energy’s Energy Information Agency (EIA).. The graph is made using the open source, javascript Plot.ly graphing library.

coronavirus deaths

US Coronavirus Deaths

Posted In: Health
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This visualization is meant to demonstrate the exponential growth of coronavirus deaths in the United States starting in early March when the first confirmed deaths took place. Some reports indicate that the first deaths may have been as early as early February, though that is not shown in this data.

In the animation, each day is about 1 second long so on days with fewer deaths, the figures show up more slowly, while on days with greater deaths, the figures come very, very quickly.

Deaths stop growing exponentially in early April and start to level off and plateau. However, they haven’t yet started to decline significantly so we are still seeing thousands of deaths each day (as of late April).

The data and visualization will be updated daily with data from Covidtracking.com.

For more information about the virus and the disease and data collection, you can find good information on the CDC website.

Sources and Tools:

Coronavirus cases are obtained from covidtracking.com. And the visualization was created using javascript and the font with people figures is called Wee People and was created by Albert Cairo and Propublica.

coronavirus deaths

Visualizing the scale of unemployment due to COVID-19 pandemic

Posted In: Unemployment
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The number of Americans who have recently filed for unemployment due to the coronavirus pandemic is equal to the entire labor force of several states put together.

click on the button below to see a new set of states.

A record 16 million Americans just filed for unemployment due to the coronavirus pandemic at the end of March and early April 2020. This is an amazingly large number of people and I wanted to visualize how many people this actually is. For context, the US Department of Labor statistics states that in February 2020 (before the pandemic hit the United State) there were 164.2 million workers in the Civilian Labor Force.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) site defines “Civilian Labor Force” as such:

    “The labor force includes all people age 16 and older who are classified as either employed and unemployed, as defined below. Conceptually, the labor force level is the number of people who are either working or actively looking for work.”

This basically means that approximately 10% of the entire workforce of people (both employed and unemployed in Feb 2020) are now out of a job. While 10% is a large, unprecedented number in our lifetimes, comparing these number to the size of the workforce in several states helps to provide more context. The visualization shows a random collection of states whose total labor force is equal to the latest unemployment numbers. If you click the button you can see a different set of states that have the same total labor force.

Predictions are that the number of unemployed will grow as the shutdowns and social distancing measures to contain the virus continue through April and into May. I will update this graph to reflect new numbers as they come out.

And we can only hope that people will be able to manage these tough economic times until we contain the virus and the economy rebounds.

Stay safe out there: stay away from people and wash your hands!

Sources and Tools:

Data on unemployment was obtained from the US Department of Labor website and labor force numbers by state are downloaded from the Bureau of Labor statistics. And the visualization was created using javascript and the open source leaflet javascript mapping library.

US city names