Do Drunk Drivers Get Off Easy in San Francisco?

Well, this was a learning experience. I decided after my previous data venture to compare blood alcohol testing in San Francisco to that in five other Bay Area counties. To do so, I converted a KML file into an Excel spreadsheet. But the data was aligned in cards that spanned several rows and two columns per entry. As far as I can tell, neither Excel nor Refine could fix this problem automatically, nor could they read the data correctly. So, using Macros to take some tiny shortcuts, I reformatted it myself. Along the way, I found that I’d corrupted the data (deleting needed rows, for example), and had to return to the original Excel file. Finally, I used Refine to crunch the data and Illustrator to make the chart. What seems strange about Illustrator is that I had to do a screen grab to make the image into a JPEG. If you’re out there reading this thinking that I made my life much harder than it had to be, do tell me how to simplify matters the next time.


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