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Global route "heatmap" (Strava)

Mon 29 Jan, 2018 7:11 pm

I love the online map from Strava that displays all of the routes that people have ever uploaded to their service.
https://blog.strava.com/galleries/heatmap/

Strava is largely used by runners, so plenty of the routes follow roads, but bushwalks are also represented. In some places the routes reveal the precise location of a pass, and can provide an answer to the question "Does it go?".

To whet your appetite, here's a screenshot around The Castle in the Budawangs (click through to the live site). I find it interesting to see where people roam once they get on top. The line coming from the bottom is from Yadboro, the line to the top-left is Nibelung Pass, and you can also see the path to Cooyoyo campsite.

Screen Shot 2018-01-29 at 08.57.36.png
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Re: Global route "heatmap" (Strava)

Mon 29 Jan, 2018 8:35 pm

I love it that the Strava heat maps have divulged the location of numerous US military bases in Syria. The maps are showing supply routes and all sorts of very sensitive movement information.
It isn't just Syria. It seems lots of "security" operatives all over the world have been tracking their down time recreational running and cycling routes and probably operational movements.
Oops, better turn that Location button off fellas.
http://www.abc.net.au/news/science/2018-01-29/strava-heat-map-shows-military-bases-and-supply-routes/9369490
I love it when the oh-so-serious experts F### Up.

Re: Global route "heatmap" (Strava)

Tue 30 Jan, 2018 9:06 am

Ah, hang on - didn't the users reveal where they are? Didn't they openly share their data?

Strava Heatmap a

Tue 30 Jan, 2018 11:18 am

After reading about the locations of US bases being exposed on the Strava Heatmap, I went for a bit of a browse, and was very surprised to find that many major bushwalking routes show up clearly on it. For instance, in the Jamison Valley, you can clearly see the route people take over Mount Solitary, and even less frequented tracks like Hippocrene Falls and Lindemans Pass.
Screen Shot 2018-01-30 at 12.04.44 PM.png
Jamison Valley
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Further south, I found plenty of tracks cyclists have left through the SCA Special Areas. Oops.
Screen Shot 2018-01-30 at 12.08.29 PM.png
Cyclists in the Special Areas
Screen Shot 2018-01-30 at 12.08.29 PM.png (275.86 KiB) Viewed 5777 times

(Yerranderie is in the top left corner)

I could even find tracks recorded to places like the Totem Pole, which is hardly a popular location. Plus, plenty of canyons were pretty obviously marked.

Anyone else found interesting things using it? Bushwalking tracks seemed to show up most obviously when using the Hot colour option.

Re: Strava Heatmap a

Tue 30 Jan, 2018 11:36 am

Already being discussed: viewtopic.php?f=21&t=27211&p=342692 .

The tracks through the "Special Areas" are very interesting. Is it possible to identify someone from the data upload or has this map been anonymised.

Re: Strava Heatmap a

Tue 30 Jan, 2018 11:43 am

Ah, sucks. I didn't even think to look in Techno-babble before posting. Whoops.

The Strava FAQ states that the data is anonymised:
https://metro.strava.com/faq/

But there's a number of other apps that would collect data like this, and I wonder if they would all anonymise the data?

Re: Strava Heatmap a

Tue 30 Jan, 2018 12:00 pm

michael_p wrote:Already being discussed: http://bushwalk.com/forum/viewtopic.php ... 1&p=342692 .

The tracks through the "Special Areas" are very interesting. Is it possible to identify someone from the data upload or has this map been anonymised.


Even if the data was anonomized, in order to use strava the phones location service needs to be active. Im sure most people havent turned off all the google or apple tracking on their phones (if thats even possible, both compaines make it very hard to do) so everyone can be identified that way.

Most people now days are tracked 24/7 anyhow. Welcome to the brave new world.

Re: Global route "heatmap" (Strava)

Tue 30 Jan, 2018 12:00 pm

So it just collates tracked info you can find on Strava already?, in a shiny package?

Re: Global route "heatmap" (Strava)

Tue 30 Jan, 2018 12:56 pm

Just so everyone is aware we have two threads going on this topic: viewtopic.php?f=5&t=27215

Re: Strava Heatmap a

Tue 30 Jan, 2018 1:09 pm

wildwanderer wrote:
michael_p wrote:Already being discussed: viewtopic.php?f=21&t=27211&p=342692 .

The tracks through the "Special Areas" are very interesting. Is it possible to identify someone from the data upload or has this map been anonymised.


Even if the data was anonomized, in order to use strava the phones location service needs to be active. Im sure most people havent turned off all the google or apple tracking on their phones (if thats even possible, both compaines make it very hard to do) so everyone can be identified that way.

Most people now days are tracked 24/7 anyhow. Welcome to the brave new world.


You don't need to use a phone for Strava FYI. You can record your activity on GPS watch or the like and upload later...

Re: Strava Heatmap a

Tue 30 Jan, 2018 1:23 pm

I found the heat map really interesting. I can see some my own routes on there.

Its amazing to see the sheer amount of traffic some areas have compared to others. Places I thought were a bit off the beaten track are bustling and areas I thought would get regular walkers/skiers are empty.

Obviously this doesn't take into account people who don't use Strava but its interesting nonetheless. For me, I can see this opening up a whole new world of route planning.

Also, selfishly I will be turning off my GPS recording when entering areas where I want to keep foot traffic to a minimum...

Re: Global route "heatmap" (Strava)

Tue 30 Jan, 2018 3:25 pm

michael_p wrote:Just so everyone is aware we have two threads going on this topic: viewtopic.php?f=5&t=27215

michael_p wrote:Already being discussed: viewtopic.php?f=21&t=27211&p=342692 .

The tracks through the "Special Areas" are very interesting. Is it possible to identify someone from the data upload or has this map been anonymised.

Both topics now merged.

Re: Global route "heatmap" (Strava)

Thu 01 Feb, 2018 2:43 pm

It's the very pale red routes which are really interesting.

Cheers
Roger

Re: Strava Heatmap a

Thu 01 Feb, 2018 2:50 pm

Zapruda wrote:Also, selfishly I will be turning off my GPS recording when entering areas where I want to keep foot traffic to a minimum...


No need.
Simply remove them from the track before you upload to strava.
The other thing to do is to remove the time stamps from the track .. then people cannot tell how fast or when you were there. GPXTimeStripper is one app for that.

In OSM the less frequent ones are a few dots of blue ... indicating not many plots there. You really have to zoom in to see them.
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