Turns out the White House has one of the slower download speeds in the city.

For that moment when you're trying to access your online Zagat guide from your iPad on the National Mall, you've now been rescued. Sorta.

Washington, D.C.'s Office of the Chief Technology Officer launched a "newly improved" version of their interactive broadband map Friday, which allows users to see internet connectivity data in bright, friendly colors — part of the office's overarching goal of collecting data to help increase access.

The city was awarded over $4 million from the State Broadband Initiative (SBI). From the emailed announcement from D.C.'s Geographic Information System:

The map includes the ability to visualize broadband themes for technology types, download/upload speeds and the number of providers within a given location.  It uses the District’s Master Address Repository search tools to identify services offered at a residential and business address, or click anywhere on the map to display information for the location.

The new Broadband web map is collaborative and engages community anchor institutions around the city, public WiFi access points and surveyed results from individuals in DC.  Users may print maps, share links and provide feedback with the Broadband Use Survey and Test Your Speed tools within the District of Columbia.

You'd obviously need an internet connection to view the site in the first place. Still, for the data-geeks among us, there are ample filters to keep yourself entertained, like download speeds and number of wireless providers. We immediately noticed that the White House has one of the slower download speeds on the Mall. Does that mean President Obama has to wait for YouTube to load like the rest of us?

Here's what looks like their old broadband map, still accessible here:

Courtesy of District of Columbia.

And here's the new one:

Courtesy of the District of Columbia.

So they don't look all that different (although the second one is admittedly prettier), but the new filters are pretty neat.

Map charting maximum download speed. Courtesy of the District of Columbia.
Map charting the number of wireless providers. Courtesy of the District of Columbia.

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. A Vancouver house designed in a modern style
    POV

    How Cities Get 'Granny Flats' Wrong

    A Vancouver designer says North American cities need bolder policies to realize the potential of accessory dwellings.

  2. Maps

    Mapping Where Europe's Population Is Moving, Aging, and Finding Work

    Younger people are fleeing rural areas, migrating northward, and having fewer children. Here’s how that’s changing the region.

  3. A toxic site in Niagara Falls, New York, seen from above.
    Environment

    The Toxic 'Blank Spots' of Niagara Falls

    The region’s “chemical genies” of the early 20th century were heralded as reaching into the future to create a more abundant life for all. Instead, they deprived future generations of their health and well-being.

  4. An autonomous vehicle drives on a race track in California.
    Equity

    Driverless Cars Won’t Save Us

    In fact, they’ll do the opposite of what techno-optimists hope, and worsen—not ease—inequality.

  5. Transportation

    Are Electric Vehicles About to Hit a Roadblock?

    With the EV tax credit on the chopping block and Tesla experiencing production delays, dreams of an electric future might prove elusive in the U.S.