The Risk Terrain Modelling Diagnostics Utility (RTMDx), developed by professors at Rutgers’ Center on Public Security, allows police forces to more accurately predict where crime will take place, then allocate officers accordingly. Users first upload a digital map of the area they wish to study in a shapefile. (Shapefiles bring together multiple file types, storing different types of geographical data, such as building types and street features, in a single location.) After uploading a map, users log the locations of past incidents of crime. Potential buildings or street features identified as hotspots – such as banks, liquor stores or streets frequented by gangs – become visible. The RTMDx software produces a table listing the risk values of each street feature, revealing their correlation with a type of criminal behaviour. The map displays the parts of the city where crime is most likely to take place. RTM can also be used …
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