Data Is Plural

... is a weekly newsletter of useful/curious datasets.

2017.06.21 edition

Traffic stops, famine warnings, open-source projects, electoral manifestoes, and prisoners’ tattoos.

130 million traffic stops. “Police pull over more than 50,000 drivers on a typical day, more than 20 million motorists every year. Yet the most common police interaction — the traffic stop — has not been tracked, at least not in any systematic way,” according to the Stanford Open Policing Project. To that end, the group has been collecting and standardizing traffic-stop data from state police agencies across America. Its first data release, published Monday, contains 130 million records from 31 states. The records vary by agency, but the most-complete states include the date, time, location, reason, and outcome of each stop; the driver’s race, gender, and age; whether a search was conducted; and whether the search found contraband. Related: The project’s findings so far. Previously: Raw traffic stop data from a smaller number of states (DIP 2015.10.28).

Famine warnings. “Created by USAID in 1985 to help decision-makers plan for humanitarian crises,” the Famine Early Warning Systems Network (FEWS NET) “provides evidence-based analysis on some 34 countries.” As part of its work, FEWS NET publishes geospatial shapefiles that score each country’s “most likely food security outcome” on standardized scale: Minimal, Stressed, Crisis, Emergency, and Famine. Previously: Global food prices (DIP 2017.05.17). [h/t Melissa Segura]

Two million open-source projects, and their dependencies. monitors “over 2.4m unique open source projects, 25m repositories and 85m interdependencies between them.” Last week, the site released its first bulk dataset, which describes each project’s metadata, published versions, and dependencies on other software libraries. [h/t Nadia Eghbal]

Political party manifestoes. The Manifesto Project has collected and coded more than 4,000 electoral manifestoes from more than 1,000 political parties in more than 50 countries between 1945 and 2015. For each manifesto, the project’s dataset indicates whether the document expresses support for/against dozens of policies and attitudes, including “market regulation,” a “national way of life”, “environmental protection,” and “anti-imperialism.” You can also browse the manifestoes online. Caveat: The dataset is subject to a somewhat restrictive usage policy. [h/t The Quartz Directory of Essential Data]

Prisoners’ tattoos. The Florida Department of Corrections’ public database contains a table describing current and released inmates’ tattoos. That data includes each tattoo’s location (e.g., “right arm,” “stomach,” “face”) and description (“cross,” “tribal,” and “skull” being the most common). Helpful: Dan Nguyen’s guide to converting the database into SQLite and CSV files. Related: Recent analyses by The Economist and by The Palm Beach Post.