Accessing Helsinki region statistics from your webapp

In this post I'd like to describe how the statistical data from the Semantic.hfi.fi service can be accessed from your web application via the demo app Areastats. Semantic.hri.fi offers several JSON/P web services which can directly be used from any website.

Areastats displays statistics when accessed from within the Finnish capital region. It uses internally the

  • HTML 5 Geolocation API to obtain the access location as WGS 85 coordinates,
  • a simple webservice to convert the coordinates into a code for the area the location resides in,
  • the Semantic.hri.fi Faceted Search API to access statistics for this area and
  • the jQuery API for DOM manipulation and Ajax

The geo-location-js API is used as an adapter for the incompatible Geolocation APIs used in various browsers. It provides a convenient access point to register callbacks for action when the location could be obtained and when not:

if (geo_position_js.init()) {
    geo_position_js.getCurrentPosition(geo_success, geo_error);

The geo_success callback then retrieves the area code from a web service via Ajax and uses the fetch_stats function to process the result:

function geo_success(p) {
    url: "polygon", 
    data: { "latitude": p.coords.latitude, "longitude": p.coords.longitude}, 
    dataType: "json", 
    success: fetch_stats,
    error: geo_error

The fetch_stats then makes an Ajax call to obtain the results:

function fetch_stats(d) {
  var alue = "alue:_" + d.KUNTA + "_" + d.PIEN + "_" + d.Nimi;
    url: "http://semantic.hri.fi/search",
    data: { 
      "include": ["items"], "limit":50, "offset":0, 
      "value": [
        "dataset:A025_HKI_Vakiluku1962"] },
    dataType: "jsonp",
    success: fetch_stats_success,
    error: fetch_stats_error

The query defines that we are interested in statistical items from the year 2010, with the unit persons (Henkilöä) and from the dataset dataset:A025_HKI_Vakiluku1962. For details on how to use the service of Semantic.hri.fi, please read the embedded documentation.

The fetch_stats_success callback then has the final results and draws a pie chart based on them:

function fetch_stats_success(d) {
  var age_index = -1;
  for (var i = 0; i < d.headers.length; i++) {
    if (d.headers[i] == "dimension:Ikäryhmä") {
      age_index = i;

  for (var i = 0; i < d.items.length; i++) {
    var key = d.items[i].values[age_index];
    key = key.substring(9);


The fetch_stats_success function iterates the headers of the result to find the index of the column we are interested in and the iterates over the result items and maps the column data into the DOM of the local HTML document. After that the drawpie function is invoked and the stats can be shown.

This demo is related to the Helsinki Region Infoshare project, which aims to provide data of the Finnish capital region in Linked Open Data form.

Feel free to contact us if you need more info on the demo or the Semantic.hri.fi services.

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