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The Boston Globe

Ideas

What Boston’s public bikes tell us about the city

A competition to visualize data from the Hubway system yields beautiful insights.

Galaxy of rides

It’s lovely, and it might tell us something: The “People’s Choice” among the various visualizations was this starburst by London software developer Latif Lokman. The dots represent every Hubway trip taken from the South Station bike stand (20,399); the distance from the center is the rider’s age, from 17 to 72; and the size of the dot represents trip length, the longest just under 3 hours. It appears there’s a sweet spot for epic journeys in early middle age—possibly because people have both the stamina for a long bike ride and the money to keep a rental out that long.

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