I wrote this piece for Lit Hub's ongoing travel series, as well as taking the pictures that accompany it. Previous pieces in this series covered 8-10 places; I managed to cram several dozen in here, and I still couldn't fit all the places I wanted to mention. If you're coming to Chicago, I hope this will be useful.
I've had a bit of a revelation this Spring and re-coded, reset and generally rejuvenated the sewing classes blog I started in 2009 and left fallow since 2013. [more inside]
I wrote about my favorite streetwear store, probably most famous right now for their FUCK DONALD shirt. [more inside]
I just found out Twitter now lets you create Moments, not just consume them. I made one about Martin of Chicago Latino punk band Los Crudos' exhibit, Desafinados: 25 years of Punk in Pilsen and Little Village.
A few years ago I inherited a Prohibition-era portrait of my ancestors. As I researched who was in it and where it was taken, unknown relatives began to emerge with historical detail and an alternate version of that very portrait. Questions remain. So I'm hoping that more descendants come out of the electronic woodwork.
A semi-comprehensive listing of all the upcoming analog film screenings in the Chicago area, big and small. [more inside]
I'm hoping it becomes a definitive directory of food bloggers in Chicago, the Chicago suburbs, and Northwest Indiana. I just finished designing and building the site and have sent out a few invitations, but it officially launches in two weeks. [more inside]
Interested in the Chicago zoning ordinance? No? Well then, how about Sim City 2000, the classic computer game cherished by millions? You love it? Well have we got an app for you! [more inside]
Robust data on individual CPS (Chicago Public Schools) schools is often difficult to locate and almost impossible to compare between schools. Although this data is used to make important decisions at the student family level (what school to apply to?) and the district level (which schools to close?), there are few resources that allow open government groups to easily access and use the data in formats that would allow them to educate the public and increase transparency and understanding. So I decided to tackle some of it, unpaid and on my own time as a CPS parent, in a project that I'm calling "Apples to Apples." I get the data out of PDFs and up into Google Fusion. And open gov groups, parents and journalists get to use it.
Tiny Fix is a bike gang run by female fixed gear cyclists under five-foot-two who work on making Chicago’s bike scene more inclusive and, more importantly, way more fun. We blog at tinyfixbikegang.com, organize bar nights and group rides, volunteer for bike events, and throw alleycat races that anyone can ride. [more inside]
A data visualization that lets you explore crime trends in Chicago's 50 wards. It was built using open data about Chicago crimes released by the Chicago Police Department. We also created make a poster using the same data. [more inside]
The story of my life, from The Pale of Settlement to Chicago.
I built a train arrival time web app for Chicago Transit Authority 'L' trains. It uses geolocation to find the station closest to you.
Chicago Lobbyists is an opengov project that visualizes all lobbyists interactions/activities with the City of Chicago in 2010. Each lobbyist has a profile (example: Ronald Johnson) listing all their clients, how much they were paid, what they charged as expenses, and what actions they sought in front of city agencies (City Council, Community Development, etc). [more inside]
There are more than 14,000 reports of vacant and abandoned buildings in Chicago. Where are they? What is their status? Who is responsible? This building finder explores the data retrieved from the City of Chicago and attempts to answer these questions. [more inside]
A budget transparency visualization for Cook County, IL (Chicago's county) displaying all county departments broken down by fund and control officer from 1993 to 2011. Done as a collaboration with Cook County Commissioner John Fritchey. [more inside]
I teamed up with a group of Columbia College journalism students to document, research and map Chicago's 171 Tax Increment Financing (TIF) projects authorized by the city from Jan. 1, 2000, through July 30, 2010. [more inside]
A map of all Chicago recycling drop off locations for residents who live outside of the city's blue cart service zone. The city's website only shows a list of addresses which I found pretty useless. I also set up a mobile version of the site so you can recycle on the go!