Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. 24/7 Space News .

Better urban planning tweet by tweet
by Staff Writers
Madrid, Spain (SPX) Dec 30, 2014

illustration only

Millions of Twitter users are constantly reporting where they are and what they are doing. With this information, two Spanish computer science experts suggest using geolocalized tweets for urban planning and land use. They have already done it in Manhattan, Madrid and London and have been able to identify, for example, nightlife areas of these large cities.

Every day millions of citizens around the world generate massive amounts of geolocalized content using mobile applications and social networks. Especially on Twitter, which could become a sensor of interactions between people and their environment and provide guidelines for planning life in the city. A forgotten issue in urbanism is land use during the night time, with problems such as noise and dirt, which could be improved with this type of tool.

At least this is what Enrique and Vanessa Frias-Martinez believe, brother and sister and computer science researchers at Telefonica Research and the University of Maryland (USA) respectively, who have suggested using geolocalized tweets for urban planning and land use. Their study's results were published in 'Engineering Applications of Artificial Intelligence'.

As Enrique Frias-Martinez explained to SINC, "geolocalized tweets can be a very useful source of information for planning, since it is an activity carried out by a large number of people who provide information on where they are at a specific time and what they are doing".

The researcher points out that "thanks to the increased use of smartphones, social networks like Twitter and Facebook have made it possible to access and produce information ubiquitously".

Geolocation tags
These networks, he adds, generate tags with the event's geolocation. "For example, Twitter includes longitude-latitude information in the tweet if the user so desires. Amongst possible applications we have seen that this network could be highly suited to helping in urban planning, especially in identifying land use".

Using Twitter, says Enrique Frias-Martinez, "you can capture information on urban land use more efficiently and for a much larger number of people than with questionnaires. Moreover, this type of consultation, traditionally used until now in planning activities, are very costly and can cause problems due to the lack of accuracy of the answers".

The new technique "automatically determines land uses in urban areas by grouping together geographical regions with similar patterns of Twitter activity," says the researcher.

Using aggregate activity of tweets, the Frias-Martinez siblings have studied land use in Manhattan, Madrid and London. In the first two cases they identified four uses: residential, business, daytime leisure (mainly parks and tourist areas) and nightlife areas. In London, they also established industrial land uses. These results were validated with open data sources.

"One of the most interesting contributions of the study is the identification of nightlife areas, since this type of land use in not often specified in urban planning, despite the problems of noise, security and need for cleaning that this creates. Therefore, this information is very relevant," says Frias-Martinez.

In this respect, the study has determined that, in Madrid, night-time tweet activity is concentrated on weekends and in Manhattan, on weekdays. On the other hand, London is characterised by its tweeting activity in daytime leisure areas.

Reference: Vanessa Frias-Martinez y Enrique Frias-Martinez. "Spectral Clustering for Sensing Urban Land Use using Twitter Activity". Engineering Applications of Artificial Intelligence (octubre, 2014).


Related Links
FECYT - Spanish Foundation for Science and Technology
Earth Observation News - Suppiliers, Technology and Application

Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle

Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News

Salinity matters
Paris (ESA) Dec 23, 2014
Measurements of salt held in surface seawater are becoming ever-more important for us to understand ocean circulation and Earth's water cycle. ESA's SMOS mission is proving essential to the quest. The Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity satellite, SMOS, is monitoring changes in the amount of water held in the surface layers of soil and concentrations of salt in the top layer of seawater - bot ... read more

'Shooting the Moon' with Satellite Laser Ranging

Moon Express testing compact lunar lander at Kennedy

UK Plans to Drill Into Moon, Explore Feasibility of Manned Base

Carnegie Mellon Unveils Lunar Rover "Andy"

Russian scientists 'map' water vapor in Martian atmosphere

Flying over Becquerel

New idea for transporting spacecraft could ease trip to Mars

NASA, Planetary Scientists Find Meteoritic Evidence of Mars Water Reservoir

FFD signs Space Act Agreement with NASA for Space Suit Development

NASA Commercial Crew Partners Complete 23 Milestones in 2014

NASA Selects Commercial Space Partners for Collaborative Partnerships

Does the peer review process stifle scientific innovation?

China's Long March puts satellite in orbit on 200th launch

Countdown to China's new space programs begins

China develops new rocket for manned moon mission: media

Service module of China's returned lunar orbiter reaches L2 point

Bright lights: big cities at night

NASA, SpaceX Update Launch of Fifth SpaceX Resupply Mission to ISS

Fifth SpaceX Mission Lets the CATS Out on the International Space Station

Politics no problem, say US and Russian spacefarers

Soyuz Installed at Baikonur, Expected to Launch Wednesday

Russian Space Agency Pushes Back Earth Imaging Satellite Launch to Friday

Thirty-five years of Ariane: how Ariane was born

Strela Rocket With Kondor-E Satellite Blasts Off From Baikonur

Kepler Proves It Can Still Find Planets

NASA's Kepler Reborn, Makes First Exoplanet Find of New Mission

Super-Earth spotted by ground-based telescope, a first

Astronomers spot Pluto-size objects swarming about young sun

Lead islands in a sea of graphene magnetize the material of the future

Penn Researchers Show Commonalities in How Different Glassy Materials Fail

Theory details how 'hot' monomers affect thin-film formation

Back to future with Roman architectural concrete

The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. All websites are published in Australia and are solely subject to Australian law and governed by Fair Use principals for news reporting and research purposes. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA news reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement, agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement All images and articles appearing on Space Media Network have been edited or digitally altered in some way. Any requests to remove copyright material will be acted upon in a timely and appropriate manner. Any attempt to extort money from Space Media Network will be ignored and reported to Australian Law Enforcement Agencies as a potential case of financial fraud involving the use of a telephonic carriage device or postal service.