I don’t know how I managed to miss out on Historypin by an organisation called We Are What We Do. Historypin is a website that lets you overlay old photographs and other media on Google Street View imagery.
Crowdsourcing projects like OpenStreetMap, Google Map Maker or Building Maker without compensation for contributors rely on volunteers’ efforts. There are various studies which try to shed light on the motivational factors of such volunteers. One way to motivate people to contribute their time and effort can be to make them feel that they are part of … Continue reading Motivating volunteers
Generalisation… The London Tube map is known for its iconic design. However, as most later public transport maps adhering to some or all of Harry Beck’s original design principles, the Tube Map features marked spatial distortions. They are introduced through the adopted simplification or schematisation which, for example, strives to orient public transport lines in … Continue reading Distortions of the Tube map visualised
A while ago I reported on a collection of historic maps of undersea cables. In today’s post I’d like to highlight an interactive and up-to-date version of such a map: For every undersea cable, Greg’s Cable Map by Greg Mahlknecht shows characteristics such as a list of landings of said cable, bandwith, length, construction date and … Continue reading World’s wiring scheme in an interactive map
Hot from the press: Esri announces the acquisition of Procedural. The Switzerland-based company specialises in procedurally (i.e., rule-based) constructed 3D city models and is known, for example, for its reconstruction of ancient Rome. Procedural’s approach, embodied in its software CityEngine, allows for very fast modelling of urban scenes.
Esri’s move will considerably strengthen its stand in the 3D realm and maybe we will at some point see BIM (Building Information Modelling) by Esri? Spatial Sustain points out correctly that Esri hasn’t usually grown by acquisitions, but steadily by its own activities. Before that background, Esri’s move into 3D via Procedural seems rather outstanding and meaningful!
Head past the break for some rather captivating examples of Procedural’s products. Continue reading “Esri buys Procedural”
The New York Times’ Abstract Sunday of this week features the World Map of Useless Stereotypes by Christoph Niemann of I LEGO N.Y. fame. Obviously, the geography has been messed with a little. And New York and its five boroughs (minus Staten Island) are prominently displayed completely out of scale with the rest of the ‘map’. … Continue reading The World Map of Useless Stereotypes
A while ago I blogged about The Real Underground, a website which allows visitors to morph the current London Underground Map into the famous 1931/1933 design by Harry Beck and into a geographically accurate depiction of the Underground network. Now, The Economist presents a reworked version of the Harry Beck design by London-based Designer Mark … Continue reading A new take on London’s underground
Yay, my hope’s coming true, apparently the new visual style of Google+ is contagious within the Google realm. Both GMail and Google Calendar will feature de-cluttered GUIs. In Gmail they are already accessible as themes (called Preview and Preview (dense)), GCal will follow soon. (via Engadget and GMail Blog) Continue reading New visual styles in Google products
The net is abuzz with the news about Google+, Google’s newest attempt to counter Facebook’s dominance in the realm of social networks. Besides India and Brasil, where Google’s Orkut seems popular, the search engine giant has so far failed to successfully enter the social network ground.
Currently, Google+ is invite-only, so no hands-on testing. But what can be said already from one of the teaser videos is that the visual design of the newest Google product deviates somewhat from what we are acquainted with out of the Googleplex. Engadget has collected numerous trailers highlighting Google+ features, the one in question is The Google+ project: A quick look, embedded below: Continue reading “Google+ manifests new approach to Google interface design”
In order to present readable and usable code here on WordPress.com without manually formatting it I searched the intertubes for an elegant solution – and found one here. [sourcecode language=”python” gutter=”false”] import math, string def readFile(file): """Reads a file from disk and returns its content as a string variable :param file: path to a file to be … Continue reading Syntax highlighting on WordPress.com
Boing Boing highlights this map of undersea cables of the Eastern Telegraph Company system printed in 1901. At Boing Boing’s source a person points to a treasure trove for anybody interested in the history of undersea cables or, specifically, related cartography. Above map with its salient red cables clearly highlights the Europe- and US-centric history of … Continue reading Old maps of undersea cables
With the 2010 BP oil spill in the Golf of Mexico and the 2011 Fukushima nuclear power plant accident, environmental disasters have gotten big coverage in the mass media over last months. However, when the biggest shock and public outrage has passed the aftermath of such disasters tends to be less newsworthy to traditional media outlets.
“Big Energy has their communications war room. Counterspill.org is ours.”
This is the claim of Counterspill whose assumed mission is to “promote awareness about the impact of non-renewable energy disasters through a living archive that combines best-in-class reporting, research, social media and community engagement.” Basically, the idea behind Counterspill is to provide on a one-stop portal a counter-narrative to the non-renewable energy industry’s narrative. Counterspill has been launched in April 2011. Its sponsors and partners are primarily philanthropic and environmental organisations as well as NGOs.
The information in the disasters rubric on Counterspill’s website can be accessed directly from the front page. It features an interactive world map and timeline mapping accidents including gas, oil, nuclear and coal in space and time. The timeline can be dragged to select a time window. Using filters one can include only accidents of a certain kind, with a defined size of cleanup costs or involving certain companies. (I assume said cleanup costs also control the size of the circles on the world map, though, this is not explained anywhere)
Through clicking on one of the disasters in the world map, or directly in the disasters rubric, one can get information about individual accidents. The section is very well designed: The central element is an interactive timeline. Continue reading “Counterspill: The renewable energy communications war room”