This Interactive Map Highlights the Most Notable Person in Your Hometown

This interactive world map envisions “a cross-verified database of notable people” to show you the most notable people in your hometown – or anywhere else you want to visit.

Topi Tjukanov, a geographer and senior map designer at Mapbox, put together the visualizations, which feature a variety of influential people from fields including culture, science, leadership and sports. To consider what contribution a person makes to society Famous can vary, so researchers try to minimize this and account for biases where possible.

Each name displayed on a map was determined using a baseline of information scraped from Wikipedia and Wikidata for use in a recently published study. Nature who tried to calculate a person’s notability based on several rules:

the number of Wikipedia versions of each individual;

Length, i.e. the total number of words found in all available biographies. This is equal to zero for individuals who have only one Wikidata entry and no biography in Wikipedia;

Average number of biographical views (hits) for each individual between 2015 and 2018 across all available language versions using the API available at in a Wikipedia biography;

Number of non-available items obtained from Wikipedia or Wikidata for date of birth, gender and sphere of influence. The intuition here is that the more remarkable a person is, the more documented their biographies are;

The total number of external links (sources, references, etc.) from Wikidata.

When you click on each name—the bigger ones that are visible from farther away, the higher their rankings—you can see where each person ranks based on notability.

If you’re a fan of geography and people, this site can be a good way to explore people near and far. Or, as it was for me, another reminder that I share the same hometown as Beyoncé.

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