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Wednesday, July 06, 2005

The Complexity of City Street Networks
City street networks are similar to other information networks, such as the Internet or social networks. Street and roads are the links while the crossroads are the nodes of these networks. So it is tempting to use physics to map city complexity, as is reporting Technology Research News.

Several physicists from Sweden and Denmark have compared the complexity of finding an address in Manhattan and in several Swedish cities. Not surprisingly, Manhattan, with its checkered grid plan, is easier to navigate than the older European cities. The scientists think their model could be "used to allow city planners to see how street changes affect navigability."

But as cities don't change very fast, it's doubtful that this method can be used efficiently anytime soon. This overview contains more details and references. It also shows you the process used by the researchers to model how a visitor navigates through an unknown city.
:: posted by Roland Piquepaille, 4:42 AM Comments (0)
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