In 1972, the Apollo 17 crew snapped some of the well-known photographs ever taken, displaying the Earth in all its glory for the primary time in human historical past. The picture has remained within the public consciousness because the ‘Blue Marble’ because it resembles the spherical agates we used to play with as kids. Certainly, greater than 70% of Earth’s floor is roofed by oceans, reflecting an attractive blue coloration.
The remainder of terrestrial Earth, nonetheless, is far more various, from deserts to dense rainforest — and this exhibits within the richer coloration palette as seen from house. Information scientist Erin Davis creatively illustrated this coloration palette in a sequence of maps displaying the dominant coloration of assorted areas throughout the globe.
Davis used a dataset from the Copernicus Sentinel-2 mission, a constellation of two equivalent satellites in the identical orbit, every outfitted with a high-resolution multispectral imager able to taking photos of Earth’s land and vegetation in 13 completely different bands.
She then ran a script within the R programming language, which she coded herself, that assigned common colours to varied areas, whether or not total continents, international locations, or states within the US.
In a short blog post on her web site, Davis defined her course of as follows:
- Wrote a script (in R) to seek out the bounding containers of all of the areas I used to be excited by
- In R, downloaded photos of these areas from Sentinel-2
- In R, wrote a script that created a sequence of commands to:
- Georeference the downloaded picture to create a geotiff
- Crop the geotiff to the borders of the world
- Re-project the geotiff to a wise projection
- Ran that GDAL script
- In R, transformed the geotiffs again to pngs, and located the common coloration of the png
In the identical weblog put up, yow will discover all of the R scripts she used for this mission, which you’ll be able to adapt on your personal information visualizations. Opposite to in style perception, information isn’t boring. It may be inventive and exquisite with the best mindset.