The World’s Busiest Airports

In many areas of the United States it’s spring break. For many, that means heading to the airport for what is still the public’s fastest form of transportation. No matter whether you’re headed to sunny climes or on a business trip, if you have a connection to make, you have a high likelihood of passing through one of these airports. The 30 busiest in the world are mapped below, explorable by total passengers and country.

View World’s Busiest Airports in a full screen map

A full 40% of these busiest airports are in the United States. Many of these top airports are major hubs for major airlines, leading to a lot of traffic. Delta pioneered the hub and spoke system in the 1950s with what is still its main base of operations in Atlanta. It is still the busiest airport in the world.

Los Angeles’ LAX is the hub for multiple airlines and is popular for international destinations. Both United and American Airlines use Chicago O’Hare as a hub. Dallas, the fourth-largest US airport (and ninth overall), is also American’s home base.

Other US airports in the top 20 include Denver (#17) and New York’s JFK (#18).

Outside of the US, China has the most airports in the top 30, with four. Beijing is the second-busiest overall, and Hong Kong rounds out the top 10. Germany is the only other country with multiple airports on the list: Frankfurt (#11) and Munich (#30).

Only three continents are represented by the 30 busiest airports: North America has 12 of them, Asia has 11, and seven are in Europe. Soekarno-Hatta International Airport in Indonesia is the only airport in the southern hemisphere to make the list of busiest airports.

Air travel continues to grow, overall and at most of these top airports. Istanbul (#12) has seen an 11% increase in travelers over the last year. Seoul (#24) and Shanghai (#19) have increased by 9.7% and 7.6% respectively.

As you plan your travel, either now or in the future, consider these top airports as you put together your itineraries.

NCAA Tournament Map: Who Has the Most Wins?

College basketball fans are expanding their cable packages. Many who follow March Madness closely will want to watch as many of the 67 games in the tournament as possible. As the teams move further in the tournament, you’ll want to check out the map below of every team to ever make the Final Four at least once. Explore the groups to see teams with appearances in the Finals and who has won the tournament the most times.

View NCAA Men’s Basketball Final Four Appearances in a full screen map

There are 87 teams represented on this map. All have made it through the early rounds of the tournament to be part of the Final Four. More than half of those teams (55) have done so at least twice.

Only seven teams have made it to the Final Four 10 or more times: North Carolina (18), UCLA (17), Kentucky (16), Duke (15), Kansas (14), Louisville (10), and Ohio State (10).

The previous teams are amongst the most winning teams, as well. UCLA won 11 times, including 10 out of 12 years between 1964 and 1975 under legendary coach John Wooden. Kentucky has won eight times, but only repeated on one occasion. North Carolina has five wins out of those 18 Final Four appearances (and nine championship game chances). Also with five championships is Indiana, which has only lost a single finals game (and has made the Final Four just eight times).

UCONN has the most championship wins without a loss. The Huskies of the Northeast have made the Final Four on five occasions and won all four of their championship appearances. By comparison, Duke took 15 trips to the Final Four and 10 championship game appearances to have the same number of tournament wins.

Other teams with perfect records in the finals include Louisville (3), Oklahoma State (2), and USF (2). 10 other teams have won their only championship appearance. 17 teams have lost in their only trip to the Finals.

If you think it’s hard to win a championship, try to correctly guess the winner. Every year millions attempt to fill out an accurate bracket beforehand and nobody has ever been perfect.

In the video above, Professor Jeff Bergen from DePaul University (two Final Four appearances, both resulting in losses) outlines the many different possible brackets. If filled out completely at random, there’s a one in nine quintillion chance of choosing every winner correctly. It’s a big number, which Bergen writes out on the board. He also goes on to estimate that knowledgable basketball fans can get the likelihood down to one in 128 million.

Go ahead and fill our your bracket for fun. But expect to achieve the same result as 66 of the 67 teams in the tournament: another year without a victory.

For those tracking our other NCAA championship map, this year’s opponents in the football championship were the first teams to square off in the basketball finals. In 1939, Oregon beat Ohio State 46-33 for the Ducks’ only championship. The Buckeyes needed to wait until 1960 for their sole win, though the team has lost another three times in the years since.

Map of the Hollywood Walk of Fame

When you think of Hollywood, the physical place in California, a few images come to mind. At the top is likely the giant sign in the hills. Amongst those iconic Hollywood images is likely the Walk of Fame, the sidewalk adorned with literal stars for the famous. Over 2,000 people and groups are honored on the walk, some multiple times.

View Hollywood Walk of Fame in a full screen map

The first permanent star was placed in 1960, though it took until 1978 for it to be designated as a cultural monument. Today the Walk encompasses 1.3 miles of Hollywood Blvd and nearly a half mile of Vine St.

The stars are broken into categories, with the majority being for motion pictures (1,134) and television (598). Nearly 42% are for stars of neither large or small screen. Other categories include recording artists (442), radio personalities (243), and live performers (42).

There are also a handful of special types of stars. A mayoral star belongs to Johnny Grant, long-time honorary mayor of Hollywood, who is credited with revitalizing the Walk. Other special stars include the Los Angeles Dodgers, Victoria’s Secret Angels, and Disneyland (in honor of its 50th year).

There are 197 people with two or more stars, denoting their contributions in more than one category honored by the Walk. Gene Autry has five stars, for live performance, motion pictures, radio, recording, and television. It would take 14 minutes to walk along and see all of Autry’s stars (and you’d have to cross the street twice to do so).

Bob Hope and Tony Martin each have four stars. There are 32 people with three stars.

Each category is distributed along the Walk, which means some famous co-stars aren’t that close to each other. There’s half a mile between Roy Rogers and Dale Evans. It’s over a mile between comedians Laurel and Hardy. It’s almost a ten minute walk between Abbott and Costello’s stars. Since both were part of the original group, there’s no argument about who was on first.

Others are remarkably close. Humphrey Bogart and Lauren Bacall are just around the corner of Hollywood Blvd and Vine St from each other. There’s just a few feet between Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers. Many others share stars, such as magicians Penn and Teller, comedians Rowan and Martin, and actors Mary-Kate and Ashley Olsen.

Explore the map above to find other insights and to look at only certain categories. If you happen to be on the Walk at this moment, put your nearest address into the search box in the map to find your nearest star using BatchGeo’s store locator feature.

Map of Baseball’s Cactus and Grapefruit League Stadiums

All 30 major league baseball teams have now descended on one of two US states. In warm, dry weather, the teams will practice and prepare for a marathon 162 game season to start April 5. For Spring Training, teams in Florida are part of the Grapefruit League and Arizona teams comprise the Cactus League. The facilities are very different from the giant ballparks they play in during the regular season. The ambiance is much more minor league than the flashiness of giant stadiums. Perhaps that’s what makes them so appealing to baseball fans as vacation spots.

View Spring Training Stadiums in a full screen map

Practicing in warm locales is a baseball tradition that goes back to its early days, 125 years ago. Originally, the teams chose their own spots and likely didn’t play exhibition games due to the distance between facilities. Now they’re close enough that visitors can usually see two games at two different stadiums on the same day.

A glance at the map shows that the Cactus League of Arizona is much closer together, with 15 teams sharing 10 facilities. All Cactus League stadiums are located in the greater Phoenix metro area. The furthest distance you’ll drive for Arizona Spring Training is about an hour between HoHoKam Stadium in Mesa (to the southeast) and Surprise Stadium in Surprise (to the northwest).

If you want to visit, the Cactus League has a nice trip planner that allows you to select the teams you want to see. You’ll need to use the Grapefruit League’s full schedule and manually filter the teams on your own.

Travel can play a big role in how many teams you can see in Florida. At the longest, it takes three hours to drive between Space Coast Stadium near the beach east of Orlando to JetBlue Park in Fort Myers (to the southwest). Google even suggests a 50 minute flight as a viable travel option. In fact, that might be the easiest way to catch a Washington Nationals day game followed by a Red Sox or Twins night game.

One thing true in Florida that can’t be said of Arizona: you’ll always be a short drive to the water. All but three of the Grapefruit League teams are along the coasts. Even the inland teams are surrounded by lakes, with the Tigers playing in a city named Lakeland.

No matter which spring training region you choose to visit, you’ll find warm weather. Phoenix averages in the mid to high 70s fahrenheit during the month of March. Florida is typically a little higher. So break out your shorts and enjoy some baseball.

Where are US Alternative Fueling Stations?

With US gas prices lower than recent years, Americans may not be as motivated to consider alternative fuels. However, the country has more than 10,000 stations serving the seven most common types of fuels. This large dataset is made easier to visualize with BatchGeo’s clustering technology, with pie charts representing the percentage of each fuel in a given area.

View Alternative Fueling Stations in a full screen map

Fuel type Total stations in US
Electric (ELEC) 3314
Liquid Propane Gas (LPG) 2681
Ethanol (E85) 2536
Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) 1070
Bio-diesel (BD) 655
Liquid Natural Gas (LNG) 146
Hydrogen (HY) 56

Electric is the most popular type of station overall, comprising about one-third of all stations in the country. However, it is especially popular along the west coast, where it makes up more than half of all alternative stations.

The map shows some other regional patterns, such as ethanol’s popularity in the midwest, where much of the corn used to make it is grown. The name “E85” refers to the typical blend of 85% ethanol with 15% traditional gasoline. The actual ratio depends upon the local area and manufacturer.

In Texas and throughout the south, Propane is a popular fuel, while compressed natural gas is a common sight in Utah, where even the governor once converted his vehicle to use this fuel. Alaska, the biggest state in the union, has eight propane stations and a single compressed natural gas station, but none of the other fuels.

There are over 600 biodiesel stations in the US, without any one region jumping out as a major consumer. There are pockets of biodiesel stations in the southeast and northwest, as well as multiple stations devoted to ranger vehicles at Yellowstone National Park.

The two least common fuel types have many of their stations in drive-happy southern California. There are about 35 liquid natural gas and 21 hydrogen stations in the greater LA area.

How about the place known as Motor City? Detroit has 19 electric, 3 compressed natural gas and one each of all except biodiesel. To get that edible-based oil, you’ll need to travel a bit down the road to North Dixie BP in Monroe.

If you go on a Sunday, beware—they close at 9 p.m.

See the Last 10 Best Picture Oscars on a Map

Oscar season is center stage, with the Academy Awards coming up on Sunday, February 22. The show takes place in Los Angeles, the epicenter of movie-making. Or is it? It used to be studio lots served as the backdrop for most movies. While studios are still used plenty, films are shot all over the world now. As proof, we collected the filming locations of the last 10 winners of the Oscar for Best Picture. When mapped, you can see that crews frequently go on location. Often they travel to where the film is actually set, but other times movie magic transforms a Southern California city into 1980s Iran.

View Oscar Filming Locations, 2005-2014 in a full screen map

The first thing you’re likely to notice are the predictable clusters: The King’s Speech in the UK, 12 Years a Slave in Louisiana, No Country for Old Men in the US Southwest and Slumdog Millionaire in India. In addition, much of the photography is international, with seven countries represented amongst the films. Perhaps most international, from a US perspective, is Hurt Locker. The bomb-disarming flick is the only winner from this group to film in multiple countries and not include the United States. It was filmed in Canada and Jordan.

Sticking to the international theme, this may be the most amazing fact on this map: between 2009 and 2011, the Best Picture winners were filmed entirely outside of the US. It’s hard to imagine another three year period where this is the case.

It should be noted that filming locations were gathered from IMDb’s user-generated lists, so they are unlikely to be exhaustive. That said, it’s also notable that only four of the ten pictures note filming locations in California. Though the state is large and diverse, quite predictably, the Los Angeles area makes up all California locations. The California location furthest from Los Angeles is the previously mentioned Ontario airport. 2013 winner Argo used the facility for the Tehran airport scenes.

Two films only list locations within California: Crash and The Artist. Both movies were also set in Los Angeles, so perhaps felt no need to look elsewhere. Million Dollar Baby only has one location outside of California and that was just a short trip away in Las Vegas.

Three-quarters of this year’s nominees have shunned California filming, at least according to the IMDb data available. Only American Sniper and Whiplash list locations in the Golden State.

View 2015 Oscar Nominations Filming Locations in a full screen map

This was a year for going to the location where the movie takes place. Boyhood is about growing up in Texas and was filmed around Austin, Houston and Big Bend National Park (also a filming location for 2008’s No Country for Old Men). The Imitation Game takes place and was filmed in locations across England. Selma, predictably, was used the United States South as a backdrop. And yes, that included filming in Selma itself. The Grand Budapest Hotel, however, shot throughout eastern Europe, but did not include Budapest itself.

BatchGeo Pro Speed Boost to 40x

We’ve worked with Google to boost geocoding speed for our Pro users to 40 times faster than our free version. That means geocoding at nearly 40 addresses per second! Maps taking minutes can now be done in seconds. If you are looking to speed up your mapping, give pro a try today.

NCAA Football Champions Mapped

Tonight Ohio State and University of Oregon face off to determine a national champion. This season marks the first year a playoff system was used to determine these two teams. However, there is a long college football tradition that goes back to the late 1800s. Various methods have been used to determine a champion through the years. Explore the map below to find who have won the most, the least and when each school had their first (and most recent) championship.

View NCAA Football Championships in a full screen map

The emptiness along the west coast between Berkeley and Seattle shows that one team in tonight’s game has never won. An Oregon victory would bring the first championship to the Ducks. For Ohio State, a win would be its eighth championship. The Buckeyes were last national champions in the 2002 season, beating then-reigning champions University of Miami at the Fiesta Bowl.

(Map updated to include Ohio State’s victory)

If Oregon wins, it will join a dozen other teams that have won only one championship. The last team added to that distinctive group was the University of Florida, in 1996. The Gators, however, have gone on to win two more championships. Of those who still just have one championship, the most recent is CU-Boulder, in 1990. The Buffaloes’ win was controversial due to a victory earlier in the season where officials accidentally gave the team five downs.

The most victorious team has its own controversy. Princeton’s 28 championships are more than any other school. The Tigers also lay claim to the very first championship for the 1869 season, when the team had a record of 1-1. Rutgers, the only other collegiate team in existence at the time, had the same record. Some historians have retroactively named them co-champions.

Yale is second overall with 27 wins. Princeton and Yale last won in 1950 and 1927, respectively. If we just look at championships since 1900, each of those Ivy League teams has just eight. By restricting the 1800s, Alabama (#3 overall) has far and away the most championships. The Crimson Tide, who lost to Ohio State in this year’s playoffs, have won 15 national championships.

Multi-Column Grouping and Filtering

Did you know you can filter by multiple column values simultaneously. If you have Group By column selected, filter the map by clicking on the values in the legend. The filter will grow the more values you select. You can also change the group by field on the fly by using the drop down on the left hand side of the legend.

Filter on multiple field values at the same time

BatchGeo Mobile 2.0

Announcing the latest release of our mobile app specific to iOS users, BatchGeo Mobile 2.0. This release is free to all existing BatchGeo Mobile App users, or $9.99 for new users. Note this release has been optimized for iOS7 and will not support older versions of iOS. To update simply open your App Store App and click update, or wait for update to be applied automatically (usually happens overnight.)