Wikipedia views visualized

In May 2011 I presented a new visualization tool which can playback all 400,000 Wikipedia edits for a random day, and show where and when these edits occurred, and for which language wiki. The tool also shows static maps for at-a-glance view of the global distribution of edits for a full day.

Recently I added two new maps:

Page views

Global distribution of page views on all Wikipedias combined This map (in the tool press 4) shows the global distribution of page views for all Wikipedia’s combined. Clearly certain parts of the world are better reached than others. No surprises here, but with this map you can examine this disparity in considerable detail.

Global page views and population density - split screen Global page views and population density - split screen Click for large version

The data shown are normalized for area, which allows direct comparison with a population density map (by SEDAC). In split screen mode you can see both page views and population density side by side: press ‘d’ (for density) repeatedly.

Mobile share

This map (press 5) shows the percentage of requests originating from mobile devices.

Percentage of page views from mobile devices

Percentage of page views from mobile devices

Note how these requests do not have to be directed to our mobile site. In fact roughly half of these requests go to the main site. As the coloring shows this percentage is quite different for different language projects. The English Wikipedia receives a far larger share of traffic via mobile devices than most other language projects. If you zoom in on Europe you can see clearly how UK stands out against e.g. Germany and France, where economic conditions are roughly comparable.

Population density 2010 - SEDAC Global distribution of edits on English Wikipedia Global distribution of page views on all Wikipedias combined Global page views and population density - split screen Global page views and population density - split screen
Extra large screenshots

>> Animation <<

Details

Detection of mobile device is done by scanning for certain keywords in the agent string as contained in the meta data which our servers receive for every request. Page views are per square kilometer. For each page view log record from our 1:1000 sampled log the ip-address is translated into latitude and longitude, using the free Maxmind database. Views are accumulated for a whole month per small region (here 1/8 degree squared), averaged per day, corrected for projection distortion (any projection of a 3D globe to a 2D surface produces substantive distortions) and colored for intensity. Cycle with ‘d’ between page views [V], split screen [V|D], split screen opposite [D|V], population density [D]. Known issue: both page views and population density screens do not pan in sync, therefore no split screen at larger zoom levels. But you can still alternate between both full screen views. Compare global share of views from a mobile device as shown here (~12%) with share of mobile views to our mobile site (~6%) shown in our monthly report (column Wikipedia Mobile, top-right percentage).

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One Response to Wikipedia views visualized

  1. Pingback: Wikimedia engineering November 2011 report — Wikimedia blog

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