After working with the Earth Stewards the past few months, we have realized the scope and importance of the group we are working with. The Earth Stewards are seeking to encourage people to clean up litter and report any litter they find through a website they call LitterMap. The founder, Daniel Toben, has gathered a large social media following and gotten his message out there. In an effort to encourage people to go find litter without it having to be reported, Daniel tasked us with creating a predictive heatmap to display on his LitterMap site. Since we have been working on it, he shared with us that he mentioned this project to groups that interviewed him and received great feedback. Moreover, he saw many of his followers join him in his mission to go out and clean up litter. Knowing this, we felt much more excited to be working on the project, since we knew it was a product people wanted.
Our product will help the Earth Stewards better equip people for cleaning up the Earth. By having a view that allows users to view areas where litter is most likely to occur, more people can take it upon themselves to go out and clean. With this in mind, our client wanted us to use a dataset of specific structures and points where litter is more likely to display this product to users. These points are used in an algorithm we developed to segment the current map view into a grid and highlight hotspot areas in the same manner as a heatmap.