The 25-day period of the Victorian election campaign officially begins with today’s issue of the writs by the state’s Governor, Alex Chernov. To mark the occasion, I hit the button today on my guide to the Victorian election, on which you can read a paywalled introductory spiel (mostly to do with the impact of the redistribution) in today’s Crikey, and which you can access any time through the link on the sidebar. The guide encompasses reviews of each of the 88 lower house seats (a guide to the upper house region will follow in due course), which feature a number of very exciting new bells and whistles:

• Booth result maps are featured for each electorate, and rather than the crappy static images you’re used to, they’re embedded in Google Maps so you can zoom in and out, move around and toggle between map and satellite view. The maps show the new electoral boundaries as thicker blue lines, and the old boundaries as thinner red ones. Big up here to Ben Raue of The Tally Room, whose boundary data I’m using, and who deserves your donations.

• Beneath the maps you will find a series of bar charts, also embedded so if you roll the cursor over the bars you can see what the underlying numbers are. The first of these compares the 2010 election two-party results with a determination of how they electorate voted at the 2013 federal election. The latter calculations are slightly crude in that I haven’t gone to the effort of dividing up booths located near electorate boundaries, but fairly considerable trouble has been taken to account for both polling booth and declaration votes.

• There follows a series of demographic indicators, compiled from ABS census collection district data since their state electorate division results are only available pre-redistribution. These include “school leavers” (those who finished high school as a percentage of the 18-plus population), percentage of households where a mortgage is being paid, percentage of all persons who speak a language other than English (“LOTE”) in the home, and medians of weekly family income and age (or to be precise, weighted means of the medians in the census collection districts that constitute the electorate).

• Finally, at the bottom of the entry page you will find image maps for the metropolitan area and the rest of the state, so the electorate guides can be accessed by clicking on the map. Like so:


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