Saturday, December 03, 2016

How to Find Your Local Superhero

Jonah Adkins has created a U.S.Avengers interactive map which can help you find your local Marvel superhero. U.S.Avengers is a new Marvel comic book series which features an America-themed team of Avengers. Using Jonah's map you can discover which of thees superheroes is from your U.S, state.

io9 has been keeping tabs on Marvel's promotional cover art releases for the new U.S.Avengers comic. Marvel has released one promotional cover for each U.S. state. Each of these individual state covers assigns an individual Avenger hero to the featured state. So io9 has been able to work out the Avenger superhero for all 50 states.

Jonah has used this information to create his U.S.Avengers Map, which shows the Avenger superhero for every state. Each state includes a map label which shows the name of the local Avenger superhero. You can even mouse-over these superhero labels to view a picture of the hero,

Jonah used Mapbox Studio to create his custom comic styled map. The map uses four different background images to create the comic half-tone type effect.

Thursday, December 01, 2016

How to Map Anti-Papal Propaganda

The Vaticinia de Summis Pontificibus are a series of prophetic manuscripts, dating from the 14th century. The manuscripts depict a succession of different popes from history, in which the popes are illustrated in various alliances with the Antichrist.

The European Union's Europeana Labs has used the Leaflet mapping platform to create an interactive presentation of the University of Fribour's copy of the manuscript. Prophesies About the Papacy allows you to use Leaflet's panning and zooming controls to explore the illustrations and text in this ancient manuscript.

Europeana Labs has written up a how-to guide on how the map was created with the Leaflet and Europeana API. Building a rich media experience with the Europeana API and IIIF explains how Leaflet can be used to display Europeana records through a simple call to the Europeana API.

Bikes in Boston Bike Lanes

In September Nathan Rosenquist released an interactive map which allows New Yorkers to submit photographs of cars parked illegally in bike lanes. displays the photos of these reported vehicles on an interactive map. It also prominently displays the licence plates of the obstructive cars.

As well as creating this interactive car-shaming map of New York Nathan also open-sourced the code behind the project on GitHub.

Cars in Bike Lanes Boston has used Nathan's code to create a similar map fo Boston cyclists. This means that cyclists in Boston can now submit details and photographs of offending vehicles to their own interactive map of cars illegally obstructing bike lanes.

Wednesday, November 30, 2016

What's Across the Ocean?

A couple of years ago Eric Odenheimer made a very popular static map which was reported as showing you what country you would see if you stood on the beach anywhere in North, South or Central America and could see all the way across the ocean.

What Odenheimer's map actually shows you is the country across the ocean which is on an equivalent latitude. Andy Woodruff was inspired by Odenheimer's map to create a series of static maps which actually show you what is actually across the ocean if you look perpendicular to the coast.

In Beyond the Sea Andy takes into account that the coastline actually bends and turns and faces in lots of different directions and that the world is round. Therefore what country is across the ocean perpendicular to the coast depends on where you are standing on this twisting coastline. Andy's explanation about the maps goes into a lot more detail about how he calculated these great circle lines for different points from the world's coastlines.

Esri UK was in turn inspired by Andy Woodruff's maps to create an interactive map of Coastal Views from the United Kingdom. Esri's map draws lines from different points along the UK coast showing which country lies across the ocean if you look perpendicular to the coastline.

The advantage of using an interactive map is that Esri has been able to add a little more information to their map. If you click on any of the lines drawn on the map the name of the country across the ocean is revealed, as is the number of miles away the country actually is.

Tuesday, November 29, 2016

Printing 3D Models of Maps

The Tile Exporter helps you to make 3d models of your favorite locations around the world. Enter a location into the Tile Exporter and it will generate the OBJ file that will allow you to print out a model of the location on a 3d printer.

Tile Exporter uses OpenStreetMap data to generate the 3d models. This means that the accuracy of the model will depend on the accuracy of the map and building height data of OSM. Luckily this is pretty accurate for most locations around the world. The Mapzen powered generation tool also means that you can preview the model on your computer screen before attempting to print it out on a 3d printer.

Have you ever dreamed of owning your own 3d scale model of the Grand Canyon or the Matterhorn? Thanks to the Terrainator you now can. The Terrainator is very similar in design to Tile Exporter. The main difference is that the Terrainator is used to create 3d models of interesting terrain rather than 3d buildings.

The Terrainator uses Google Maps to help you select your favorite area of terrain. It then creates an accurate scale model and uploads it to Shapeways, ready for 3d printing. The cost of the model depends on the volume of material required to make the model. Flatter models are therefore cheaper than mountainous areas, although they are much less fun. It is also possible to purchase the created STL files from Terrainator if you want to print out your own terrain model yourself.

The Terrainator is limited to areas of the world where it has accurate terrain data.

Monday, November 28, 2016

3d Marathon Mapping

The Catalina Eco Marathon is a grueling race through some pretty tough mountainous terrain. It isn't easy to convey just how how hard the Catalina Eco Marathon can be to run but Mapbox have given it a good try with their interactive map of the course.

The Catalina Eco Marathon Map uses MapboxGL's new extrude property to overlay a 3d elevation chart over the course of the marathon route. The elevation chart visualizes just how steep parts of the course actually are. The 3d elevation route is itself interactive and you can mouse-over sections of the course to find out the elevation at any point.

The map includes an inset panel which displays a 2d elevation chart of the course. You can interactive with this chart to find out the elevation and distance of different parts of the course. The 2d chart is also synchronized to the map, which means that the map view also updates to show the location of the selected part of the marathon course.

How the World is Connected

The countries of the world are connected in many ways. There are the transportation links that allow us to travel from one country to another. There are the global communication networks which allow us to speak with people on the other side of the world. There are also transnational pipelines and electricity grids which allow countries to import and export power.

Exploring the World of Connectivity shows some of the massive infrastructure networks that make possible global communication, travel and energy exchange. The infrastructure networks displayed on the map are based on those outlined in Parag Khanna’s book 'Connectography - Mapping the Future of Global Civilization'.

The mapped networks are categorized into the three main areas of transportation, energy and communication. These different categories can be isolated on the map by using the filters in the map sidebar. Each of the three categories are subdivided into individual infrastructure networks which can also be selected using the filters in the map sidebar.

Mapping London's Winter Wonderland

If you are visiting London this winter you can look forward to ice skating at Somerset House, the Christmas market on the South Bank, the Christmas tree in Trafalgar Square and the Christmas lights decorating Oxford Streets.

London Covered by glh Hotels is a nice interactive map of things that you can see and do in London this winter. It is also a clever way of marketing glh's London Hotels. The map shows the locations of London's special winter events, ice skating rinks and winter markets. It also shows the location of some of the best stores to visit to complete your Christmas shopping.

As you browse the map you can add any of the points of interest that you fancy to your own personal itinerary. You can, of course, also book your stay in any of the featured glh hotels.

The map itself is a nice custom designed map with neat illustrations of the featured points of interest. The custom map has been made interactive using the Mapplic mapping library. Mapplic is a mapping library which is particular effective in creating interactive maps from your own custom made maps or images.

Sunday, November 27, 2016

How to Map Your Videos

You might have seen the Scottish Mountain Biking Trails map, featured earlier this week on Maps Mania. Scottish Mountain Bike Trails provides video tours of Scottish mountain bike trails, in which each video is synchronized to a Cesium map. This means that as the headcam video of a trail plays you can follow the action on a map of the same trail.

If the Scottish Mountain Biking Trails map has inspired you to think about mapping your own videos then you might want to have a look at Map Channel's new Video Maps creation tool. Using Video Maps you can easily create your own video journey map, in which your video is synchronized to a Google Map,

To create a Video Map you need to have a YouTube video of a journey or trip. You also need to have a GPX file of the same journey in order to map the locations in the video to the Google Map. If you have the video and the GPX file you just need to share them with Map Channels and Video Maps will do all the rest.

Your finished Video Map includes your video, two different Google Map views (map & oblique 'Bird's Eye' view), Street View and an elevation chart. When you press play on the video the two maps and the Street View automatically update to show the current location in the accompanying video.

Saturday, November 26, 2016

The Occult Map of London

Throughout history the streets of London have been haunted by a number of ghoulish figures. In the nineteenth century the fire breathing, metal clawed Spring-Heeled Jack would stalk the streets of South London attacking helpless pedestrians. In the twentieth century it was the Vampyre of Highgate who stalked the grounds of Highgate Cemetery.

You can learn more about London's ghoulish past on History Today's mapped Guide to Occult London. The guide uses Knightlab's StoryMapJS platform to tell the stories of the people, myths, and places in London’s occult history. Many of the examples of occult locations on the map also feature links to previous articles on the subject on the History Today website.

If your heart can take more frightful tales of London then you might also like Grim London, an interactive map plotting and recounting the history of some of London's most spine-chilling events and apparitions.