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One off-the-cuff idea: treat this as an image-processing problem.

  1. Segment your world into a grid of "pixels", with the intensity of each pixel being the number of problems reported there.
  2. Blur the "image" a bit, to group complaints that are relatively close, but not in adjacent pixels. How much you blur is probably a matter of experimentation.
  3. Run an edge detection algorithm over the image. You now have borders defining clumps of complaints.

The major problem that I can see is that you might get several closely-spaced groups blurring into each other, creating a single super-large group.

Update: "Segment the world, find local maxima, then calculate the voronoi diagram of the point set described by the maxima" might work, too.

The hell with paco, vote for Erudil!

In reply to Re: Sorting by geographical proximity / clumping groups of items based on X and Y by FoxtrotUniform
in thread Sorting by geographical proximity / clumping groups of items based on X and Y by vroom

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