Map building with Metabase
If you've been following @tjmule's twitter stream, you know the Standard Co / Secure Data Kit team has been leveraging Metabase and maps in general to try and tell a more visual story of the #coronavirus outbreak. There are plenty of maps out there (in particular this one from Johns Hopkins) but what most of them lack is a little more specificity. We're in particular interested in county-by-county maps that share the status of the outbreak.
It's with that in mind that we're creating this thread to start to track what resources we use to build maps. Specifically state by state county geoJSON sources, data sources of the outbreak, etc. This is a big effort so we're starting small and local but will hope to grow this in the coming days and weeks.
Data Management Tool
We use Secure Data Kit (duh). It allows us to easily spin up new data collection forms (for web and native mobile). If you want to set up a form to collect your own data, go for it -- we have a freemium version
In the past we've used Power Bi, Tableau, STATA, and others. In fact, we still support those integrations and clients still use them. But for this we settled on Metabase because it's super easy to use, allows flexibility, and has a really nice SQL tool (once a coder, always a coder). Setting up maps is really straightforward and that's predominantly what we're doing with this project. Below we'll share the mapping resources we've been using.
We're not native map makers -- we're web developers. So geojson is our preference for building maps. And it's super quick and easy.
First we wanted to build a visualization that focused entirely on Africa. To do that, we needed regional boundaries. I used The WHO / AFRO boundaries found here (I ended up tweaking it a bit).
The Africa only visualization can be found here (updated 12 March 2020)
The rest of the below resources are US counties by state. I’ll be adding more
(Hoping to keep this updated daily new json boundaries)
If you’re new to metabase and want to know how to add and use a map, check out this video I made.