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What kind of students get into the University of Chicago?

There are essentially four types, and I’m broadly stereotyping here: The College Prep kid (~40%). This is the most common, at least in the Class of 2019 – 50% of the class went to a private school. The Type 1 kid went to a private prep school, especially one of the Eight Schools. They did […]

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Fun with city subreddits

I’ve been playing with python to try to learn how to make maps using Matplotlib. As it turns out, it’s not all that complicated. Using Reddit’s API I scraped the top 300 posts from the largest city subreddits in the United States and Canada. After some data wrangling I end up with a Pandas dataframe […]

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Mexico’s urban pileups

If you think this would make a cool poster, you can get a high-res, print-worthy PDF for $9!     The US-Mexico border is the most frequently crossed, and one of the longest, in the world. The difference in development between the Mexican and US side is perhaps the greatest of any international border. This results […]

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US cities: cheap and open-minded

Context: on Quora, I was asked, “What is the cheapest and most open-minded city in the United States?“ Tl;dr: Louisville, Kentucky – aka “Where sobriety goes to die” or “The Southernmost Northern City”. Wow, cheapest AND most open-minded… this is not easy to measure. For “cheapest” I assume you mean cost of living, which I […]

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Standalone US Cities

Recently I had a random thought: why is it that some city articles on Wikipedia are called, for example, Nashville, Tennessee – while others are simply, Seattle or Dallas? Is Nashville simply not culturally significant enough to stand on its own, without the cumbersome state identifier? Wikipedia has extensive policy about the article names for geographical locations, […]

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Why is San Jose’s airport so close to downtown?

This is Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport. In the background is downtown Washington, D.C. Reagan National is approximately a 1–1.5 hr walk from the White House, depending on which part of the airport you start in. This happens to be roughly the same as the walking time between San Jose International and the center of […]

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