Project 2

Leaving on a Jet Plane

In the last decade more and more tracking data has been made available on the web allowing people to track cabs, buses, trains, and planes. In this project we will be looking at real tracking data about flights arriving to and departing from O'Hare.

This will be the first group project. Given the quick turnaround time on these projects you should get your team together quickly and decide on roles.

Over the summer I collected a week of data about flights into and out of O'Hare using data from This data was collected at 5 minute intervals giving over 2000 files of data. Each file contains 1 line for each flight either inbound or outbound at that time.

The data is located at data/p2/ and is 8.4MB as a zip file

Each file is labelled ORD.month-day-year-hour-minute.log

and each file contains a number of lines like the following:
<Flight Id="161510335" Flight="BR 658" Airline="EVA Air" Latitude="60.52" Longitude="-147.49" Bearing="90" IsDep="0" />

Each line contains:

As in Project 1 you will be creating a web page. The final data download may be a little heavy so you should also provide a downloadable version. The application should have obvious and intuitive controls. Similar to project 1, this application will involve a map and additional graphs to help the user investigate this data. Unlike project 1, before you visualize this data you will need to convert it into appropriate form(s).

For a C you need ...

For a B you need to add ...

For an A you need to add ...

One thing to be careful of on this project is the coordinate system of the map you choose, so you can map the latitude and longitude values correctly. You may want to look up the coordinates of various cities around the country / world and make sure they appear in the correct locations on your map.

Another thing is the format of the data. There is 8 MB of compressed data and 51MB of uncompressed data here (and there will be more data in future projects) so you will need to massage it into one or more appropriate formats to make it easier and quicker to visualize.

As with Project 1 you should create a web page describing your work on the application. This time instead of embedding the processing applicaiton you should have a link so people can download your application (and the necessary data files) to run your application. Please make sure that your application is Mac / Windows / Linux compatible. If you can get your app to run online through a browser then do include that version as well. The web page should describe the contribution of each team member (ie who worked on which interface elements, who worked on converting the data into a more usable form, etc.)

Please send me a 1024 x 768 jpg image of your visualization for the web. This should be named p2.<someone_in_your_groups_last_name>.jpg.

Each person in the group should also send me a private email ranking your coworkers on the project on a scale from 1 (low) to 5 (high) in terms of how good a coworker they were on the project. If you never want to work with them again, give them a 1. If this person would be a first choice for a partner on a future project then give them a 5. If they did what was expected but nothing particularly good or bad then give them a 3. By default your score should be 3 unless you have a particular reason to increase or decrease the number. Please confine your responses to 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 and no 1/3ds or .5s please. I will average out all these scores for projects 2, 3 and 4 and make those final averages available to the class and keep them in mind when assigning final grades.

Each group will present their work to the class and describe its features to the rest of the class. This allows everyone to see a variety of solutions to the problem, and a variety of implementations.

last revision 9/14/09