Monday, August 26, 2013

Census 2010

Already four years after the 2010 population and housing census was done in Thailand, finally the results got published by the National Statistics Office. However this announcement is really well hidden on the website of the NSO, their special website for the census did not see any update since 2010, and of course there the page which should give access to the data is still under construction. Thus unlike the 2000 census, there are no free PDF reports or Excel sheets available (yet?), only the printed books for each province and CD-ROM for each province, and those of course not for free.

But funnily the Google web crawler can be very helpful if a webmaster allows it crawl everything - when I was searching for the total population number of one province found in this census, Google returned me the PDF with the final report of that province, containing all the data - probably exactly the same as the printed book. For example for Nakhon Si Thammarat, the final report can be found here. That page seems to be something like a FTP access to the webserver itself, and within that folder one can find the final reports for the 2010 census for all provinces, and the preliminary reports for most province.

I am sure that it wasn't intended to make these PDFs available this way, but at least I now have all the census data in the same accuracy as I have for the 2000 census, just need to work a bit more to extract the numbers from the PDFs than I would have to do with XLS files. I don't know if the links above will continue to work long, if the webmaster ever notices that this is probably a big backdoor also useable to drop spam or malware on that server. Or if (and when) the 2010 data will still get published in the same way as the 2000 data, with XLS and PDFs easily found from the website.

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