and Google Maps 17 May 2005

21 comments Latest by Jaco

How’s this for a clever use of Google Maps and public data… Check out all crimes reported in the 3 a.m. hour on May 5, 2005 in Chicago. You can even map out all the prostitution busts (it wasn’t me, I swear, but now I know where to go when I’m feeling a little lonely). If you’re ever in need of some crack, head over here. Plus, you can subscribe to RSS feeds for your neighborhood. Very very cool. This and more at the new

21 comments so far (Jump to latest)

Jamie 17 May 05

Wow that is cool!

Dan Boland 17 May 05

Wow, it’s one of those things that’s really cool and a really good service to the people of Chicago, but at the same time, it’s totally depressing and disheartening. It’s weird how much shit goes on right in your own backyard. And searching the reported rapes makes me want to barf. Some of the places are unbelievable — appliance store, gas station, public school — it makes me want to escort my wife everywhere she goes.

Brad 17 May 05


Also see this Wired news story on another GIS application with Google maps:,1284,67514,00.html

Off Topic 17 May 05

Can anyone tell me what these cool quicktime tutorials are made with?

Marc Hedlund 17 May 05

Wow. Every city should have one of these.

Randy 17 May 05

I�m constantly amazed at how quickly Google can do something that�s been done before (MapQuest), but open up the platform in such a way that it drives innovation.

FYI, this is actually illegal according to Google’s term. They didn’t open anything up, people are taking and combining this data without permission. It’s a mash-up outside the terms of service which makes it not sanctioned by Google.

Darrel 17 May 05

Now, if only they could add white-collar crime to the map…

Seriously, that sounds like a really cool use of Google Maps.

Gleb Zhgun 17 May 05

I bet sooner or later some drug dealer will pay to be the first in the list :)


David Holtz 17 May 05

I like this, it seems more specific, even iof the UI and map sucks.

Citizen ICAM

Brian 17 May 05

When is google going to let this out, distribute an API or something?
I’ve been dying to get a dump of local businesses in my area (miami), and then see the concentrations by type. This would be useful to me as a web developer, because then I could see how much competition I have in my neighborhood/area.

Now if only someone could combine housingmaps with a tool that could scour all the MLS or other listing services and then create the uber-home finding service.

Dave 17 May 05

I can see the future now…

“I found a job with a company whose office is in the lowest concentration of white-colar crime found using a Google maps app., while optimizing the route from my home (chosen in the safest neighborhood constrained by my price range found using a Google maps app.) to minimize passing by drugs or prostitutes found using a Google maps app. I also pass time at a coffee shop which resides in an area with the lowest concentration of identity theft and wireless hackers, as found on a Google maps app.”

J 18 May 05

Not sure this feature is fully working - see

Patrick Haney 18 May 05

It’s unbelievable how many cool (and useful) web applications have come out of Google Maps already, and there are endless opportunities to come up with more.

This is the sort of thing every major city could use, especially NYC. However, I suppose the ability to create the same thing for other cities depends on what data is available, and from what I can tell Chicago is the only (or one of the few) US cities to be a) tracking data to this extent and b) allowing the public to search/hook into it.

David Holtz 20 May 05

Andrew: Ah-ha, here’s to me only reading what’s immediately in front of me. I stand corrected. Thanks!

Brittany Abbate 19 Jul 05

Hey all…I’m a producer with WGN Ch. 9 doing a story about the site…I’m interviewing Adrian Holovaty, the developer of the site tomorrow and talking to the police about how the site’s being used.

Anyone LIVING in Chicago interested in talking about how they’re using the site?

Dan Boland, I’d be very interested in hearing from you based on your reaction to what you’re finding “in your own backyard.”

If anyone would be willing to talk to us, please email at [email protected] or at [email protected]

Thanks so much!

Shanahan 07 Sep 05

Like alot of people may not admit, I am using the site against them. I have been using the site to see where they are busting people and where I can feel safe at, so they will not arrest me doing what I feel is my right.

Jaco 22 Nov 05

I am living in Amsterdam/The Netherlands and am wondering when Google is going to release their detailed maps for other countries? Or are there any alternatives to start playing around with geo-based apps?