Data Visualization Fun Fridays: Mapping Arms Data.
September 6, 2013 1:46 PM   Subscribe

ARMSGLOBE: an interactive visualization of the international trade in small arms (generally defined as lethal weapons for use by individuals) from 1992 to 2011. Click on an individual country or type its name into the search box to examine it separately. Uncheck the boxes in the lower right corner to narrow down by category. Drag the slider at the bottom or click the graph button to view change over time. May take a while to load on slower connections.

Check the FAQ (PDF) for caveats about the limitations of the available data. The MAD project is supported by the Peace Research Institute Oslo and the Igarapé Institute.
posted by Nomyte (5 comments total) 14 users marked this as a favorite
Ooh, that's gorgeous. Is there a way to drill down in the results a bit that I'm not seeing? The display seems to pop up more information for countries that contribute to a large part of the results. So I can see, for example, that Canada bought 37% of its military arms imports by dollar amount from Sweden in 1992, or 80% from the US in 2011, but I can't see the dollar amounts of the displayed military imports from China or Russia. And I'd like to, because those sound interesting even if the data doesn't provide any more detail than that.
posted by figurant at 2:09 PM on September 6, 2013

Oh, never mind. Zoom in until the country name labels show up, and you can see how the results break down by mousing over them.
posted by figurant at 2:10 PM on September 6, 2013

That's pretty brutal, but lovely to look at and play around with. Check just ammo imports in the lower right, then click on the US. Then compare by clicking on Russia, China, Brazil... astonishing. Can everyone just stop making bullets for a couple of years, FFS?
posted by Lukenlogs at 6:10 PM on September 6, 2013

Looked up the border between Greece and Albania. This thing checks out, Our Love is clearly shown.
posted by Harvey Kilobit at 2:07 AM on September 7, 2013

Absolutely beautiful... But the point of data visualization is to illuminate and elucidate. Instead, I found it this to be confusing and painful to navigate. Fun to play with, though.
posted by Witold at 9:57 PM on September 7, 2013

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