Insight Competition Finalists Announced!


Discover Insight competition finalists: Smelly Maps, Building of NYC, Waste.Exposed, Am I Rent Stabilized, Airbnb Vs. Berlin. Winners revealed Sept 24!

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Insight Competition Finalists Announced!


About a month ago  we announced Insight  our first ever data and design competition in conjunction with Measure  a New York City exhibit by Storefront for Art and Architecture. With the competition close at the end of last month  we wanted to thank all of the teams who submitted projects and emphasize that we were truly blown away by the quality of maps and insight shared by our stellar community.  With over 60 incredible submissions  our team spent days deeply exploring each project and deliberating in selecting the top 5 most outstanding projects to enter into our finalists round. CartoDB is proud to announce our Insight: A data and design competition finalists for 2015!

Smelly Maps

By Rossano Schifanella  Luca Maria Aiello  Daniele Quercia



Smelly Maps


Humans are able to discriminate thousands of smells but city officials and urban planners deal only with the management of few bad odors. This negative and oversimplified perspective is mainly given by the fact that smell is hard to measure. The Smelly Maps project aims at disrupting this negative perspective proposing a new way of capturing the urban smellscape of a city from social media data (Flickr  Twitter). See the full project HERE.

The Building of NYC

By Tim Martin  Llana Safer Martin

NYC experienced various periods of building construction since the turn of the 20th century. Historical tax lot data shows building activity that appears to correspond with economic boom and bust cycles. From the prosperity of the 1920s  to the decay of the 1970s  the built environment seems to mimic the City’s changing social and economic landscape. This time-series visualization highlights those cycles by showing their corresponding patterns of development in Lower Manhattan from 1900 to 2014. See the full project HERE.


By Bernardo Loureiro





Waste.Exposed explores the flows of waste and recyclables out of New York City. The website allows  through a mapping application  for users to visualize the journey of their own waste  depending on where they live. All of NYC’s waste is exported to other places  sometime as far as 500 miles away  to be then incinerated or landfilled. The project seeks to create a greater understanding and awareness of this complex waste system  highlighting its environmental impacts. See the full project HERE.

Am I Rent Stabilized

By Chris Henrick





Am I Rent Stabilized is a web application that encourages New York City tenants to find out if their landlord may be illegally overcharging them for a rent stabilized apartment and if so  motivates them to take action. The app checks a user's address against a database of properties that are likely to have rent stabilized apartments  recommends a course of action  and informs the user of their nearest tenants rights group. The content is available in Spanish or Chinese for non-english speakers. See the full project HERE.

Airbnb Vs. Berlin

By Alsino Skowronnek  Jonas Parnow  Lucas Vogel





Rents are on the rise in Berlin  and the reasons are manifold. Online portals of the so-called “sharing economy”  such as Airbnb  are marketing to tourists and have proven to be good business. But are they contributing to a shortage in affordable housing by replacing regular rental appartments with short-term holiday flats? This question has sparked a vivid public debate not only in New York  San Francisco and London  but also in Berlin. This is a look into Airbnb’s business activity in Berlin. See the full project HERE.

Thank you again to all of the teams that submitted projects. It has been a truly incredible experience for us  and we hope to inspire more great works in the future. As our judges panel works hard to review the finalists in the following weeks  stay tuned for our winning submission announcement September 24th! If you haven't done so already  stop by the Storefront for Art and Architecture and check out cartoDB's interactive exhibit where the finalist's projects are on display for the world.

Happy Data Mapping!