Thursday, February 11, 2016
You can now explore Rome at night with this Bulgari - Roman Treasures tour of the eternal city. To be honest the website is little more than a very slick promotional campaign for Bulgari's products. However it does highlight the great leaps and bounds that have made in the last two years in creating fully interactive 'Street View' tours.
Bulgari - Roman Treasures presents a number of 360 degree panoramic images of some of Rome's most beautiful locations. All these 'Street View' scenes have been shot at night and have been enhanced with a little gold plating - each interactive image includes a superimposed star field and Parallax scrolling effects.
Bulgari is an Italian jewelry company. As you explore these Roman Street View scenes you can click on the overlaid map markers to explore some of Bulgari's range of jewelry products.
Angela Merkel's 'open door' policy for welcoming migrants from Syria, Iraq and elsewhere has been a brave humanitarian response to the migrant crisis facing Europe. The policy has not come without some negative cost to Merkel's own popularity in Germany. TIME named her their Person of the Year for her handling of the refugee crisis. However in Germany Merkel's personal rating among voters has fallen to its lowest point in four years.
There is a rising backlash against the influx of refugees among many people in Germany. Some of this backlash has led to a number of anti-refugee stories spreading like wildfire on social media and to some extent in the mainstream press. Not all of these stories turn out to be true.
The Hoaxmap has been released to document and correct some of the wildly inaccurate anti-refugee stories that have sprung up in Germany. Each of the false stories on the map include a link to a news report where the original story has been investigated and has been found to be untrue.
The Campaign for Better Transport has released an interactive map which shows the huge increase in rail traffic in Great Britain over the last 18 years.
The Rail Travel Station Usage 1997-2015 map visualizes annual rail passenger traffic for each year since 1997. In those 18 years rail traffic in Great Britain has increased by 1.45 billion annual passenger journeys. The Rail Travel Station Usage map shows which stations have seen the biggest increase in traffic and which stations have seen a drop in traffic since 1997.
The map uses the CartoDB Torque library to animate through all 18 years of passenger traffic. The circular station map markers are sized to represent the size of the station (amount of passenger traffic). The color of the circles indicates the scale of the increase (or decrease) in passenger traffic over the last 18 years.
Wednesday, February 10, 2016
You can now easily create your own story maps with Mapme. Mapme's Google Maps based creation tool is great way to create your own free maps without having to do any coding. Mapme Stories is a new feature which allows you to quickly and easily make your own scroll-driven stories with maps.
Scroll driven maps are a great way to create a story about a location, spatial data, an historical event or wherever your imagination wants to take you. On Monday I posted about a new story map that I created over the weekend looking at the story behind Robert Baker's 1832 'Sanitary Map of the Town of Leeds'.
Or you could just use Mapme Stories. Check out the embedded demo Mapme Story map on this review of vegan restaurants in Berlin. Notice how as you as you scroll through the restaurant reviews the map automatically pans and highlights the reviewed restaurant on the map.
If you want to make your own Mapme Story then just create a free account or connect to Mapme with a Facebook account.
I've always wondered why interactive mapping platforms have not been used more often to provide interpretations of works of art. Paintings can be easily imported into all the popular mapping platforms. You can then use all the navigation tools of an interactive map to explore features in the painting.
You can see what is possible in The Garden of Earthly Delights by Hieronymus Bosch - An Online Interactive Adventure. This wonderful introduction provides a guided audiovisual tour of the Bosch's triptych and allows you to explore The Garden of Earthly Delights at your own pace.
The interactive actually doesn't use a mapping platform for its presentation but it certainly uses all the navigation tools which users are familiar with from online maps. You can zoom in and out and pan around the painting at will. The painting also includes a number of map markers which allow you to learn more about details within the triptych.
If you click on a painting marker you can listen to an audio explanation of the selected scene in Bosch's Garden of Earthly Delights. You can also select to read the same analysis in a pop-up information window.
Do you know your Brummie from your Scouse? Or your Geordie from your Cockney? You can find out with Expedia's Accent Map of the British Isles.
In Expedia's quiz you are played a series of spoken phrases. Your job is to detect the accent and select where the speaker is from, from a choice of three locations on a Mapbox map.
If you don't want to play the quiz then you can choose to explore the map. If you select this option you can explore the wonders of British accents by selecting from markers on the map and listening to the audio recordings of people speaking from different regions of the British Isles.
If you need a little practice before trying Expedia's Accent Map of the British Isles then you can learn more about British accents from the British Library's Accents and Dialects Map. This map allows you to listen to recordings of British accents from the BBC Voices collection, the Millennium Memory Bank, the Survey of English Dialects and the Berliner Lautarchiv British & Commonwealth recordings collections.
Tuesday, February 09, 2016
Back in December The Atlantic released a really interesting map containing an oblique satellite view of Denver and the Colorado Rockies. The map used a rare satellite image captured by WorldView-3 to provide an alternative to the usual top down satellite views provided on interactive maps.
Mapbox has now created a similar oblique satellite view map, this time of San Francisco. The satellite image (also provided by WorldView-3) is simply amazing. The Mapbox blog explains how the camera on board WorldView-3 includes a sensor suite called CAVIS, which is able to filter out atmospheric haze which can partly obscure the Earth in oblique satellite views.
The Mapbox blog also contains a number of zoomed-in versions of the map highlighting some of the areas in San Francisco captured by WorldView-3 in this satellite image.
Hans Hack has created a number of impressive mapped visualizations of some of Europe's largest cities. There's something a little different however about these maps. Or rather there's a big difference - in these maps all the elevation data has been hugely increased in scale.
The result is that in Hans Hack's Alpen maps Europe's cities are dominated by towering mountains. For example, in London's Alps the hills of Hampstead Heath and Greenwich park become massive peaks, while the River Thames meanders through a valley between the hills of north and south London.
There are four Alpen maps in total, one for each of Berlin, Hamburg, London and Brussels. The maps were created using three.js and require a WebGL enabled browser.
Paris is the latest city to be added to Maps Mania's ever growing directory of building age maps. BatiParis: Période de Construction des Immeubles Parisiens maps the age of buildings in central Paris. It is also a rather good example of the building age genre of interactive mapping.
Like other building age maps BatiParis uses a choropleth layer to show the age of buildings, with each building colored according to its year of construction. If you zoom in on the map important historical buildings are also shown on the map with interactive map markers.
Like other good building age maps BatiParis allows you to filter the buildings shown on the map by age of construction. This allows you to visualize the major stages of construction in the Paris capital over the centuries. What I particularly like about the Paris building age map is that each of the building periods in the map menu is also represented by a proportional square.
These colored squares in the menu allow you to tell at a glance the times when Paris undertook major building construction. For example, the 1851-1914 range has the largest square showing that this was a major period of construction in the French capital. Presumably this is a result of Haussmann's renovation of Paris in the later half of the nineteenth century.
Here are a few other building age maps from around the world:
Monday, February 08, 2016
There are now many interactive maps which show the real-time movements of trains. buses and trams on transit systems around the world. Over the years Maps Mania has reported on hundreds of these real-time transit maps. This is the first time we have reported on a map which shows pedestrians moving in real-time.
Placemeter has created a real-time map of pedestrian and bike traffic in Union Square, New York. The map shows the animated movements of pedestrians on the Broadway and East 17th sidewalks and cyclists passing by in the bike lane.
Placemeter provides sensors that can process feeds from video and security cameras in order to extract data on pedestrian and / or vehicle movements. The data can then be used to analyse foot-traffic at specific locations.
A post on the Placemeter blog, Visualizing Traffic Data in Real Time, includes an interactive map showing the real-time movements of people in Union Square. As well as showing people moving around in real-time the map includes a table showing the total number of pedestrians and cyclists for the current day. It also seems to show the total number of people entering the Chipotle and Geox stores on Union Square.