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Understand and uncover the identity of your location with a tap.

Sitegeist is a mobile application that helps you to learn more about your surroundings in seconds. Drawing on publicly available information, the app presents solid data in a simple at-a-glance format to help you tap into the pulse of your location. From demographics about people and housing to the latest popular spots or weather, Sitegeist presents localized information visually so you can get back to enjoying the neighborhood. The application draws on free APIs such as the U.S. Census, Yelp! and others to showcase what's possible with access to data. Sitegeist was created by the Sunlight Foundation in consultation with design firm IDEO and with support from the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation. It is the third in a series of National Data Apps.

Source Code for Native Mobile Apps


Python requirements in requirements.txt


  • PostgreSQL (with PostGIS)
  • MongoDB

Installation and Configuration

  1. Install requirements using pip

     $ pip install -r requirements.txt
  2. Create local settings file and edit.

     $ cp sitegeist/settings/ sitegeist/settings/
     $ vi sitegeist/settings/
  3. Create database structure.

     $ python syncdb
     $ python migrate
  4. Configure mongodb indexes:

     $ python shell
     >>> from sitegeist import mongo
     >>> mongo.create_indexes()
  5. Run Sitegeist

     python runserver

Loading Data

Varies by data source. Check code to see how it works.

A general loading script was created, but the specifics of how it works changes with each source. Know what happens before you use it.

$ export DJANGO_SETTINGS_MODULE=sitegeist.settings
$ ./bin/load -h
usage: [-h] [-c PATH] [-d] SOURCES [SOURCES ...]

Load Sitegeist data sources

positional arguments:
  SOURCES               one or more source: census, epa, locations, schools

optional arguments:
  -h, --help            show this help message and exit
  -c PATH, --config PATH
                        path to config file
  -d, --dryrun          load data source, but do not save to database


Understand and uncover the identity of your location with a tap.




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