My ArcMap student license timed out about a year ago, and just recently I discovered Quantum GIS, free and open source GIS software package. I downloaded it today and quickly got to work on a map I've been wanting to make.
You always hear about the population of Dallas just continuing to rise, but I've also heard that Dallas proper AKA The Big D isn't growing quite as fast as its suburban neighbor cities. So, I decided to investigate, armed with a freshly downloaded QGIS and the adrenaline rush that comes with learning a new visualization program (is my nerd starting to show?)
Two maps here, the first shows the percentage change in population density (to account for variation in data region size) from 2000 - 2010 according to census data. The data is at the census block level. A data level of 95, then, would mean that this census block in 2010 is 5% less populated than it was in 2000. A number over 100, then, means that the population increased in that area.
This next map simplifies the situation a bit. The white areas lost population between 2000 and 2010. The blue areas gained population. Thoughts?