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The Map Room

Blogging about maps since 2003

Last Build Date: Tue, 24 Apr 2018 13:26:23 +0000


New and Reissued Books for April 2018

Tue, 24 Apr 2018 13:05:38 +0000

New Editions The third edition of Mark Monmonier’s classic How to Lie with Maps (University of Chicago Press, 1o April) “includes significant updates throughout as well as new chapters on image maps, prohibitive cartography, and online maps. It also includes an expanded section of color images and an updated list of sources for further reading.” I … Continue reading "New and Reissued Books for April 2018"

Texas A&M Acquires Copy of Austin’s 1830 Map of Texas

Fri, 20 Apr 2018 15:21:11 +0000

The Texas A&M University Libraries has acquired a rare copy of Stephen F. Austin’s 1830 map of Texas. Called “the first map of Texas printed in the United States” and “the first meaningful map of Texas” (presumably there’s an earlier map of Coahuila y Tejas out there), only eight copies of the 1830 edition are … Continue reading "Texas A&M Acquires Copy of Austin’s 1830 Map of Texas"

Ottawa City Councillor Wants a Map of Road Conditions Like Los Angeles’s

Fri, 20 Apr 2018 13:59:52 +0000

An Ottawa city councillor wants take a page out of Los Angeles’s playbook and create a real-time interactive map of the city’s road conditions. L.A.’s street assessment map rates road conditions as good, fair or poor. Since Ottawa’s roads are on balance between fair and poor, it might be revealing, if uncomfortable, to have all … Continue reading "Ottawa City Councillor Wants a Map of Road Conditions Like Los Angeles’s"

An Update on Leonia, NJ’s War on Waze

Fri, 20 Apr 2018 13:44:47 +0000

Leonia, New Jersey’s decision to close its residential streets to non-residents (previously)—an attempt to deal with the traffic being routed that way by navigation apps like Waze—has also, like the apps that created the problem in the first place, resulted in some unintended consequences. On, for example, visiting relatives and local businesses. Previously: New Jersey Borough … Continue reading "An Update on Leonia, NJ’s War on Waze"

FDR’s Globe

Fri, 20 Apr 2018 13:30:42 +0000

Earlier this week I told you about President Kennedy’s map of Cuba. Now here’s a piece on President Franklin Delano Roosevelt’s globe from the Library of Congress’s map blog. The “President’s Globe” is big—really big and important. Weighing in at a whopping 750 pounds and sized at an impressive 50 inches in diameter, the globe … Continue reading "FDR’s Globe"

Kenneth Field’s Dot Density Election Map Redux

Fri, 20 Apr 2018 13:16:02 +0000

As promised, Kenneth Field has uploaded the final web version of the quick-and-dirty dasymetric dot density map of the 2016 U.S. presidential election results, which he posted to Twitter last month. Unlike the quick-and-dirty version, the final version is in high resolution and can be zoomed in to quite a preposterous degree. One dot, one … Continue reading "Kenneth Field’s Dot Density Election Map Redux"

Advice on Choropleth Maps

Wed, 18 Apr 2018 17:57:11 +0000

Last month Lisa Charlotte Rost published a post on Datawrapper’s blog full of tips about choropleth maps: when to use them (and when not to), how to make them better (lots about colour use), along with some examples of good ones. Worth bookmarking. She followed that up with another post focusing on one particular factor: … Continue reading "Advice on Choropleth Maps"

JFK’s Cuban Missile Crisis Map Sells for Nearly $140,000

Tue, 17 Apr 2018 22:17:49 +0000

A map of potential Soviet targets in Cuba used by President John F. Kennedy during the Cuban Missile Crisis has sold at auction for $138,798. Both buyer and seller were anonymous; the seller says the map had been given to them 20 years ago by former defense secretary Robert McNamara. CBS Boston, CNN, Fine Books and … Continue reading "JFK’s Cuban Missile Crisis Map Sells for Nearly $140,000"

The Great Polish Map of Scotland

Tue, 17 Apr 2018 17:44:13 +0000

The Great Polish Map of Scotland, a giant concrete relief map 50 metres by 40 metres in size, was the brainchild of Jan Tomasik, a hotelier and former Polish Army soldier who was stationed in Scotland during the Second World War. He envisioned the map as a monument to Scotland’s hospitality to the visiting Polish … Continue reading "The Great Polish Map of Scotland"

The Rumsey Collection’s Augmented Reality Globe App

Thu, 12 Apr 2018 22:42:43 +0000

The David Rumsey Map Collection has a number of virtual globes, but its AR Globe app may be the most unusual way to view them. Released last December for the iPhone and iPad, it uses augmented reality to superimpose one of seven celestial or terrestrial globes from the 15th through 19th centuries. The globes can … Continue reading "The Rumsey Collection’s Augmented Reality Globe App"

French Rail Network Map Updated

Thu, 12 Apr 2018 12:39:20 +0000

Last October I told you about a track network map for the entire French railway network, a map I just loved. That map has now been updated for 2018, which is minor news in and of itself, but (a) I love this map and (b) it’s an opportunity to point at the firm that produced … Continue reading "French Rail Network Map Updated"

Mapping the Rohingya Refugee Camps

Tue, 10 Apr 2018 17:04:54 +0000

There are 671,000 Rohingya refugees living in refugee camps in Bangladesh. The UN Refugee Agency has produced a story map, Rohingya Refugee Emergency at a Glance, that maps in detail the dire situation in those camps: overcrowding; risk of natural disaster (landslides, monsoon season); access to health services, food, clean water and sanitation. Six months … Continue reading "Mapping the Rohingya Refugee Camps"

Spacing Seeks ‘Creative Maps’ of Canadian Cities

Mon, 09 Apr 2018 14:08:19 +0000

Spacing magazine is looking for “creative maps”—by which they mean pictorial maps or map illustrations—of Canadian cities. There has been an explosion of maps that are not necessarily meant to be used for directions, but instead are considered works of art and inspired imagination. We want you to create an illustrative map that reflects a … Continue reading "Spacing Seeks ‘Creative Maps’ of Canadian Cities"

Hungarian Parliamentary Election Results

Mon, 09 Apr 2018 13:58:02 +0000

Viktor Orbán’s Fidesz party has won an overwhelming majority in Sunday’s Hungarian parliamentary elections. Maps Mania found interactive maps of the results, however monochromatic, from the newspaper Magyar Nemzet. In Hungarian, so good luck.

The Ordnance Survey Launches a Line of GPS Devices

Mon, 09 Apr 2018 12:19:45 +0000

Now seems an odd time to be launching a line of standalone, single-purpose GPS devices, but the Ordnance Survey has gone and done so: they’ve announced a total of four devices, ranging in size from the cycling-friendly Velo to the robust Aventura and in price from £370 to £500. The OS has been offering third-party … Continue reading "The Ordnance Survey Launches a Line of GPS Devices"

The Art of Map Illustration

Fri, 06 Apr 2018 14:11:10 +0000

What do we mean by mapmaking? That’s a less straightforward question than it appears at first glance. A cartographer might talk about projections, scale, use of symbols, deciding which information to put on the map; a digital mapmaker might emphasize GIS and data layers and data sources. Your assumptions about what mapmaking is depends largely … Continue reading "The Art of Map Illustration"

The FCC’s Broadband Map ‘Hallucinates’ Broadband Access

Fri, 06 Apr 2018 12:41:43 +0000

In February the FCC released a new broadband map showing the availability of high-speed internet in the United States. The previous map was apparently useless, but the new map has been coming in for its share of criticism as well because it doesn’t match the reality on the ground. Partly it’s because the map shows the … Continue reading "The FCC’s Broadband Map ‘Hallucinates’ Broadband Access"

Mapping Snowfall in the United States

Thu, 05 Apr 2018 13:57:18 +0000

This map shows every inch of snow that fell on the lower 48 this winter. — Post Graphics (@PostGraphics) March 24, 2018 Winter isn’t quite done with us yet where I live. And with that in mind, here’s a neat animated map from the Washington Post that shows the total accumulated snowfall in the … Continue reading "Mapping Snowfall in the United States"

The Ordnance Survey’s April Fool’s Island

Thu, 05 Apr 2018 13:06:11 +0000

The Ordnance Survey isn’t above an April Fool’s prank, it seems. For the April 2018 issue of Country Walking magazine, they created a fictional island in the Atlantic Ocean that “had been lost to the sea centuries ago, only for it to have now mysteriously risen out of the waves in need of mapping.” (Its name, … Continue reading "The Ordnance Survey’s April Fool’s Island"

314 Rare Books and Maps Stolen from Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh

Tue, 03 Apr 2018 21:19:29 +0000

In April 2017, the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh made a shocking discovery in the course of a routine insurance appraisal of its rare book holdings in the library’s main Oakland branch: some 314 rare books, folios, maps and plates were missing. News of the thefts was finally made public last month: see coverage from CBS Pittsburgh, Hyperallergic, Library Journal, … Continue reading "314 Rare Books and Maps Stolen from Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh"

Marie Tharp on the BBC World Service

Tue, 03 Apr 2018 20:51:07 +0000

Still another profile of ocean cartographer Marie Tharp, this time from the BBC World Service’s Witness program: it’s a nine-minute audio clip called “Mapping the Ocean’s Secrets.” [Osher] On the WMS Facebook group, Bert Johnson had this to say about this latest profile: “Hers is a standout story, but I wish some of these journalists who … Continue reading "Marie Tharp on the BBC World Service"

Viviane Rombaldi Seppey

Mon, 02 Apr 2018 23:34:07 +0000

Born in Switzerland, based in New York City, Viviane Rombaldi Seppey uses maps and other items to create her works of art, some pieces of which barely resemble the raw material. “Maps, phonebooks, books, photographs, collected objects are source materials used to describe the elusive meanings of places and my relation to them. My art … Continue reading "Viviane Rombaldi Seppey"

John Loacker and the Kroll Map Company

Mon, 02 Apr 2018 22:40:40 +0000

It’s nice to see media coverage of a map publisher or store that doesn’t involve it going out of business. The Seattle Times looks at a local institution, the Kroll Map Company, which has been mapping the city and its environs for more than a century, and its current owner, John Loacker. The survival of a … Continue reading "John Loacker and the Kroll Map Company"

‘Art of the Spheres’ at the Osher Map Library

Sat, 31 Mar 2018 22:49:29 +0000

An exhibition of astronomical maps and illustrations opened this week at the Osher Map Library in Portland, Maine. Art of the Spheres: Picturing the Cosmos since 1600 is, at least in its online version, divided into two categories: Works of Scientific Investigation features chromolithographs of various astronomical phenomena, the moon, planets and deep sky objects from The … Continue reading "‘Art of the Spheres’ at the Osher Map Library"

The Atlas Awards

Sat, 31 Mar 2018 16:24:02 +0000

The Cartographers’ Guild, that online community of fantasy map makers, announced the 2018 winners of their Atlas Awards, which honour the best maps made by their members. It’s the second year of the Awards’ existence. Winners were named in eight categories, including best world, regional, city/town, hand-drawn, space, and structure and gaming maps; most original; … Continue reading "The Atlas Awards"

The Boston Globe on ‘Breathing Room’

Fri, 30 Mar 2018 20:31:59 +0000

The Boston Globe now has a writeup of the Leventhal’s latest exhibition, Breathing Room: Mapping Boston’s Green Spaces (which I told you about on Monday).

In Praise of Inset Maps

Fri, 30 Mar 2018 17:29:42 +0000

The kerfuffle about Shetland being relegated to inset maps (Ed Parsons has taken to calling this “Insetgate”) is not quite done. Kenneth Field shares his thoughts in a post titled “In Praise of Insets,” in which he calls Scottish politician Tavish Scott’s proposal to ban the use of inset maps to portray Shetland as “utter nonsense” … Continue reading "In Praise of Inset Maps"

Breathing Room: Mapping Boston’s Green Spaces

Mon, 26 Mar 2018 16:04:11 +0000

Breathing Room: Mapping Boston’s Green Spaces is the latest exhibition put on by the Leventhal Map Center at the Boston Public Library. Boston boasts some of the nation’s most recognizable and cherished green spaces, from Boston Common, to the Emerald Necklace, to hundreds of neighborhood parks, playgrounds, tot lots, community gardens, playing fields, cemeteries, and … Continue reading "Breathing Room: Mapping Boston’s Green Spaces"

A Look at European Bus Map Design

Fri, 23 Mar 2018 11:00:15 +0000

Transit map designer Jug Cerović has reposted a look at the state of the art of European bus network maps. “I have studied more than 250 European cities and their bus maps, and have also designed a few. Here are some observations about the state of the practice.” He groups bus maps into three categories, based … Continue reading "A Look at European Bus Map Design"

Bruce Gittings on the Shetland Controversy

Fri, 23 Mar 2018 10:42:35 +0000

Writing on the Royal Scottish Geographic Society’s blog, Bruce Gittings challenges the notion that putting Shetland in an inset box is a map error: It is plainly not: it is a cartographic compromise. And there are always implications to a compromise. To include the Northern Isles in their actual geographical location, separated from the mainland … Continue reading "Bruce Gittings on the Shetland Controversy"