October 23, 2008

Fun with Webtools

So this is making the rounds today, which draws on a map of metropolitan areas with surplus single males or single females that garnered some attention a while back claimed to show that the East Coast was full of lonely single women and the West Coast full of lonely single men. However, that map may have painted with too broad a brush, as Ezra Klein notes:
The original map counted all singles between the ages of 20 and 64. The new map lets you screw with some sliders for a data range. And the results are fascinating. On the young end of the spectrum, single men outnumber single women just about everywhere. If you hold the ages to 20-34, DC, for instance, has 27 extra single men for every 1,000 people. Shift the slider so it tracks folks from age 45 to 60, and DC has 48 more single women for every 1,000 folks.
One can find a kind of proof of this in another webtool that's making the rounds, which is a mashup of Craigslist personal ads and Google Maps. You can filter the results according to sexual preference, and the thing that jumps out most when one look at the DC area, say, is that there are considerably more men seeking women and men seeking men than there are women seeking men or women seeking women. This assumes, of course, that most of the people who post Craigslist personals are in the 18-44 age bracket, so take it with a grain of salt.

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