Geog 104 - Daily Maps - Fall 2013
An inspirational story about SkyTruth
here , and a link to
SkyTruth.org . Maybe this is why we
are doing this course.
One place with lots of examples to talk about...
The OCSI Map Gallery website
The Maps posted by The Atlantic
Michael Friendly's "Milestones in the history of thematic
cartography, statistical graphics, and data visualization"
NYTimes - New Hampshire primary results. Choropleth and graduated
point symbols. (link) .
for some contention on "earliest" and
for some other images.)
Note the range of symbology: Pictographic, iconic, conventional,
NY Times Top 1% map. Interactive. Set an income level by
typing. Map unit symbolized changes with mouse over.
Legend changes with click. Examples are plotted, moused-over
added. Scale/zoom slider.
Is the logic of this symbology clear?
Do you get a sense of the pattern of level of income needed to be
in the top 1% of incomes across the country?
NY Times Stop and Frisk Map
Graduated point symbols or continuous tone? look what happens as you change
scale ('zoom'). The transparency "adding up" makes the color
(value) work with some redundance to symbolize the number of
Chicago Boundaries .
From the wall maps section of projects...
This is another dot map where the symbology seems to change with
scale (continuous to point), but it also shows blending of
Zhao Yu Tu "map of the area of the mausoleum".
2,300 years old. 37" x 19" engraved on 1/4 inch thick copper plate.
John Noble Wilford (2001) The Mapmakers
Sources hedge on the significance and other aspects:
"oldest map found in China",
"oldest map with clearly marked distances",
"oldest extant Chinese map",
"oldest number-bearing map in the world".
But we've seen other claims of oldest map as much as 14,000 years
Another color dot distribution map from the NYTimes.
(Here.) This one maps census data on race at a county level
with dots placed (randomly) within the counties.
People per Dot changes with scale, and seems often to leave
empty space. Some of the county borders standout even when not drawn.
Robinson (Elements of Cartography, 1969) and Mackay
("Dotting the Dot Map" in Surveying and Mapping v9 pp3-10 1969)
wrote about dot size and value to get "coalescence"
and a visually appealing map.
This interactive map updates but draws upon such writing.
Maps of the Occupy Wall Street Movement. There are lots
of maps of OWS on-line. See the range of visual impressions
some of their various symbologies tell?
eg 1 ,
eg 2 ,
eg 3 , and
eg 4 .
This is a bit different... Senator Al Frankin drawing maps of the
USA by hand and from memory.
(2 min, MPR, 2009) ,
(5 min, 2007) ,
(2 min, CNN, 2009) .
- Here's one from a few years ago that may remian timely.
Plate carre is not equidistant, and
it is way too easy to do silly things when you are not thinking!
ths. Projections do matter. His 'better' map is still
perhaps not the one I'd go with.
- USDA Cropland Data Layer.
nassgeodata.gmu.edu/CropScape Probably beats a statistical
table for getting a sense of where various crops are grown in the
US. Pointilist dasymetric sub-county level detail.
How about an animated flow map with near real-time data
This one show wind speed
and direction on the US mainland. The data are forecasts
downloaded once per hour from the National Digital Forecast
Google plays with 8-bit graphics of the Nintendo Entertainment
System for April Fool's Day.
This came from Tracey P. Lauriault via the Canadian Cartographic
Association's mail list.
"Normally Telegeography has the monopoly on Internet Cable Maps,
but looks there there are a few other's making these:
- http://www.cablemap.info/ (mashup)
- my real fave - Neal Stephenson
An image noted by a colleague with interests in water and
NYT's Interactive Electoral Map.
Shake, Rattle and Roll: maps of existential risk from...
The Burning Platform
A design firm Stamen Design
with some interesting maps.
David Rumsey Collection in Google...
Map of US interventions in Latin America... spatially indexed
Maps of craft breweries, comparing absolute numbers and numbers
normalized by population. The text also reports correlations
with income, education and happiness (at the state level).
from The Atlantic Cities
Hawaii 2012 Primary Election Mashup.
Point symbols using hue
rather than value to indicate ranges of a quantitative variable
for spatially extensive units may make sense if one considers
these as qualitative differences at polling places.
I think that the "turnout" percentage is of registered voters
rather than of eligible voters. Precinct variation in population
(vote) is not shown.
Kickstarter project for... Food, an Altas . Interesting way
to put together an atlas. Personnally, I think the guerrilla
cartography moniker is a bit strange. Drawing on a war metaphor
rather than one grounded in writing, informing, or educating,
while at the same time not indicating what is being fought for
or against seems a red herring. It also seems to signal a more
confrontational than useful take. Perhaps I need to see who
these folks are. Someone might want to see
whether this is a good kickstarter marketing strategy.
The Alaska State Ferry
I think this shows in (almost?) real-time where the vessels are.
The plate carree projection is a bit of a distraction but easy to
use in a mashup. The ship symbols sizes stay constant;
at smaller scales ("zoomed out") they are monsterously large and
at large scales they are tiny. The wake makes them look like
speed boats. Pointing at the vessels or the terminals gives
identifying text. The ferry trip from Bellingham to Juneau or Haines
is worth doing.
Some election mapping comments in an email from D. R. Fraser Taylor:
Re: [CCA-list] Nuanced map view of the US Elections
From: Fraser Taylor
Choropleth maps are probably one of the worst ways of showing US
election results.This visualisation is better but although much
more accurate it still has problems in terms of how the uninformed
user may perceive it. The granularity of the date is a distinct advantage.
On 15/11/2012 10:22 AM, X wrote:
> Imagine if we could get these data at that level
> of granularity in Canada!
The SGI Twitter Heat map, via the Huffington Post
here. Spectral color scheme. Spatial aggregation?
Here's another one from XKCD pointed out by Duane Marble.
"Pet Peeve #208".
Heat maps and population maps.
Unmapping an island in 2012?
Sandy Island. Now, this is a place that
some map geneology might be in order. Why is this place in the
datasets that it is? When did it start? In what source?
Interactive map of The Rolling Stones' live show history.
I am not sure why the cartographer chose the projection(s?) that
are used, would like to have seen time and the sequence more easily
(which show was first? which last? how much time between shows?),
and are straight lines on this projection realistic (i.e., do you
think 1989's Steel Wheels tour really went like that?).
I thought that we had a few pointers to the Apple Maps debacle
in September 2012 (what a mess!).
Here's (another) one on the consequences of bad data, via the BBC.
"Apple Maps 'is life-threatening' to motorists lost in Australia
Jenni Sparks - hand drawn map.
I'm not sure what to call this type of symbology.
The texture results from hand drawing landmark features in orthographic
projection, (keeping major roads open?), integrating neighborhood
names, and using color to set off parks and water --- all to fill
the planimetric map. An interesting effect. I have not tried
to test the map simplification, and displacements of location and scale
of the features that are drawn. Analyzing them might make a good term project.
Brookings Institute Global MetroMonitor interactive map.
here . The authors were: Emilia Istrate and Carey Anne
Nadeau. The 'mouse over' to retrieve statistical reports for
individual metropolitan areas is straightforward and common
enough, but note the "Plot" vs "Map" toggle and the movement of dots
between them to relate places in the geographic and economic spaces.
That seems interesting. Does it work? What limitations would
you expect with this? On the "comparisons with counrty growth
2011-2012" map, what do you make of the symbol color scheme?
Here's a dot map that shows one person per dot.
It is interesting for raises questions about the design of dot
maps... should the number of dots per person interact with the
map scale? the display resolution? should the cartographer try
to ease the effects of statistical borders?
An animation of US weather for 2012.
Maybe it is still here:
http://www.wunderground.com/video/ or there abouts.
NYTimes story (8Jan2013) on
Indeed, these are becoming more affordable. When can we get one?
What would we do with it?
Best and worst countries in which to be born.
here . Classic choropleth map.
Hows the color scheme?
Can you distinguish all the categories?
Is that a good map projection for this?
What do you make of the lines connecting parts of multi-part
polygons, more colloquially, "islands"?
Here's another case that raises issues about making public
record information more easily accessible.
and via a 'blog' that includes some more context
here . Hmmm. Information wars? Setting information "free"?
Privacy? There is some complextiy to sort-out here.
Here is a story in images...
What's all the light in
An interactivce timeline graphic on milestones in data
I'm not sure that I buy that this is really...
the-saddest-map-in-america/, but it might be useful information.
- Not a map per se, but a BBC News piece by Duncan Walker on
"Has street view changed the way we behave?". It sure is handy
in Geog 340.
A physicist maps "Where's George" data
Here's one showing economic contrasts along transit line
transects in New York City.
Inequality and New York's Subway
That economic surface is quite a terrain. Does this show the
gradients well? The locations of maxima and minima?
This NY Times story on NYC putting street maps on the streets,
raises many questions but most deeply harkens back to the debate
about whether educating map users or improving map design is the
better way to improve map use performance. I like both, but education
seems more key. What do you think?
Colorful, and maybe pithier than shallow, but
inadvertantly shows the way a conceptual (data?) model's inertia can swamp
and maybe sink the intended message. Why would the borders remain fixed
so under corporate feudalism? What would you envison?
A bit tongue in cheek, but this look at the printed map does
show some real advantages to the technology.
Maybe we should look at ESRI's GeoCommons
site both to see the maps and
to see whether it offers a useful tool/introduction to web-based cartography.
Here's another set of maps and commentary from MapBrief dealing
with 'first impressions' of maps. On the LA election map, I'm
wondering how, if it is one dot per voter, not about privacy but
about how many pixels it takes to display the map, or how few
voters it takes to elect a mayor there. Does the map fit on
screen if each voter gets even a single pixel?
Another case of a place gone missing in Google's databases:
An area cartogram from the Atlantic showing US electricity use
Beyond the area, each state's rank is printed in green.
Note also the hand-drawn generalization and the several ways that
visual hierarchy is achieved.
A test of pattern recognition... a demonstration of maps
as sources of distibutive pattern... and a quiz show, all
wrapped in one.
Name the city from the pattern of Starbucks.
A trace of a person's cell phone, twitter, etc locations for six
months, turned into a google maps mashup.
Another dot density map from the Atlantic Cities place matters site,
where non-English speakers are in the US.
But did they leave-out Hawaii?
40 maps to make sense of the world
Big data, some maps, some system intelligence, some
ubiquitous spatial information... like maps of waste streams
and getting health services in your neighborhood...
and some questions:
'The Human Face of Big Data' .
(5:08 minutes video)
Indeed, who owns our data? Who says what's shared?
Maybe more about people than maps exactly but...
Jon Stewart and the Daily Show via Daily KOS
had to get on this list sometime.
Another one that a couple of cartographers emailed each other
about... how about garrish and indistinguishable colors?
Congressionial Religions .
How about some more choropleth maps? This time showing
the geography (distribution) of STEM employment in the US.
Looks like the "small multiples" or "micromaps" approach; or
is this an atlas? Is that the best projection choice and
consequent use of map space they could make? Does the
interactive widget help? Cranky cartographic critique aside,
likely location of career opportunities is something worth
Another BBC story on Apple's cartographic mess,
this one on
driving directions across a runway!
Gee, this live "database and navigation provision" world
seems even more perilous than the old map in the glovebox.
Keep your eyes on the terrain.
- Lincoln and an early "Infographic" ...
from the New Yorker and the LOC .
NYTimes aerial photos
Interactive map of carbon sinks and sources in British Columbia, from
The Tyee .
And here is one that was intended and works as a joke...
a map of gun owners in Montana . The humor highlights some
limitations of choropleth mapping. (And maybe a sly way to resist
a requirement to 'map' something.) Would a point pattern map of
households have been as effective comedically or cartographically?
Another cautionary note on who gets your phone's location data.
It seems more widely distributed than you might have imagined.
See spatial reserves.
And yes, plate carree is easy, but is it really the best choice here?
Where am I? trailer seems perhaps a bit provocative.
(I have not seen the film.)