#geowebchat transcript, 15 October 2013: Form vs function in web cartography

@mappingmashups Oct 13, 11:42am Next #geowebchat: Form vs function in web cartography. Are style & content mutually exclusive? Tues Oct 15. 12pm PDT. #NACIS2013 Please RT!

@mappingmashups Oct 14, 12:44pm New post: Next #geowebchat, October 15: Form vs function in web cartography bit.ly/1clEjjt

@MapsterMan Oct 15, 5:01am Upcoming Twitter discussion on form vs. function in web cartography tinyurl.com/n2epza8 #geowebchat lnkd.in/bfY2Q9d

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 11:54am Today’s #geowebchat about form and function in web cartography starts in a few minutes. Read up on last time’s chat: mappingmashups.net/2013/10/01/geo…

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:00pm Welcome everyone to today’s #geowebchat! We’re discussing form vs function in geoweb cartography: mappingmashups.net/2013/10/14/nex… #NACIS2013

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:01pm We’re continuing discussions from #NACIS2013 (lanyrd.com/2013/nacis/), but if you didn’t attend #NACIS you can still join #geowebchat!

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:02pm Try tools like twitterfall.com or tweetchat.com/room/geowebchat to follow along. Make sure you always include “#geowebchat” in your tweets.

@erictheise Oct 15, 12:02pm hi all. #NACIS2013 was a good time, looking forward to today’s chat #geowebchat

@JacqInTheBooks Oct 15, 12:03pm Hey #geowebchat! Jacq from @UCalgary here. Interesting topic today! Will probably mostly lurk, but still collecting tweets for PhD research.

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:04pm First off, I set up a false debate between @awoodruff & @MapHugger: is the problem too much style or too little in web maps? #geowebchat

@JacqInTheBooks Oct 15, 12:04pm For more details about my PhD research looking at online learning communities check out – informallearningonline.webs.com #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:05pm .@awoodruff felt like he saw too many flashy maps that demo tech w/out content… #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:06pm …but @MapHugger (in this talk: wired.com/wiredscience/2…) argues that flashiness makes no difference in whether maps go viral… #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:08pm …& of course our #NACIS2013 keynote from @albertocairo reminded us that maps must be both insightful and beautiful to succeed #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:11pm But you know what I really want to talk about in this #geowebchat? Let’s settle once and for all whether we love or hate the wind map!

@ajturner Oct 15, 12:11pm Check out @iMuehlenhaus research of ‘Online Persuasive Maps’ ian.muehlenhaus.com/viral/ #geowebchat /cc @mappingmashups

@skorasaurus Oct 15, 12:12pm “too much style or too little” depends on map; 1 prob. is that the library being used may not be best for the map’s objective #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:13pm Thanks @ajturner, and here’s @iMuehlenhaus’s #NACIS2013 presentation along the same lines: ian.muehlenhaus.com/web-map-aesthe… #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:14pm RT @nonieatvp: @mappingmashups I love it, but then again – I am a big fan of map art. Paula Scher and Matthew Cusick, etc. #geowebchat

@CostanzaAsnaghi Oct 15, 12:14pm @mappingmashups #geowebchat? Could you share a link of the wind map?

@erictheise Oct 15, 12:14pm suggestions made by @MapHugger made sense, but who thinks that going viral is the measure of success for an online map? #geowebchat

@redgeographics Oct 15, 12:14pm Imho stule and message of the map (any map) are equally important. Message is the main goal, but good design attracts viewers #geowebchat

@MapGoddess Oct 15, 12:15pm hint.fm/wind/ #geowebchat

@nonieatvp Oct 15, 12:15pm @CostanzaAsnaghi @mappingmashups hint.fm/wind/ #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:15pm To be fair to @awoodruff, he also said there is a place for maps-as-examples… #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:16pm …and @awoodruff praised @mbostock for clearly labeling his example maps as such bost.ocks.org/mike/example/ #geowebchat

@DonnaGenzmer Oct 15, 12:16pm @redgeographics but successfully communicating the message is important #geowebchat

@MapHugger Oct 15, 12:16pm @erictheise Employers and content strategists, for one! #geowebchat

@CostanzaAsnaghi Oct 15, 12:18pm @mappingmashups #geowebchat Do you like the wind map? I think it shows interesting data, but I would not hang it on my bedroom wall.

@MapHugger Oct 15, 12:19pm @mappingmashups Both! Apps make it easy for novices to make blah maps, while js makes it easy for devs to make flashy ones #geowebchat

@DonnaGenzmer Oct 15, 12:19pm @MapGoddess …message is negated if style blocks communication. @redgeographics #geowebchat

@nonieatvp Oct 15, 12:19pm @CostanzaAsnaghi @mappingmashups I would, totally. I would use it as Live Wallpaper on my phone/tablet/device if I could. #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:20pm I should confess my wind map opinion. I think it’s good. When you think that the alternative is this: aviationweather.gov/adds/data/wind… #geowebchat

@JessiBreen Oct 15, 12:21pm @mappingmashups I’m pro-wind map. It gets students interested in the possibilities of novel mappings. #geowebchat

@jscarto Oct 15, 12:21pm .@mappingmashups Modality matters. If it’s an interactive, folks cite the tech. No one points out when it’s done in Illustrator. #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:21pm I feel most of the critique of the wind map is that you can’t measure values off of it. But you can with the interactivity. #geowebchat

@redgeographics Oct 15, 12:23pm @jscarto @mappingmashups I mention my maps are done in Illustrator/MAPublisher all the time :) But I may be biased ;) #geowebchat

@mjfoster83 Oct 15, 12:24pm @erictheise I would say defining the ‘measure of success’ is circumstantial and subject based. #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:24pm Or maybe there are people who actually think the wind map is ugly, but again, look at the alternatives for mapping wind! #geowebchat

@mjfoster83 Oct 15, 12:24pm @erictheise @MapHugger the concept of ‘creating to go viral’ makes cartographers seem pretty narcissistic #geowebchat

@MapGoddess Oct 15, 12:24pm .@mappingmashups requirements assessment: does one need to measure wind? does one need a different viz? #geowebchat

@CostanzaAsnaghi Oct 15, 12:25pm @mappingmashups @nonieatvp OMG! Sure, it’s very good if compared to that one. But still something does not convince me (?) #geowebchat

@jscarto Oct 15, 12:26pm .@redgeographics Ok, ok, I take it back! In general though I feel interaction emphasizes tech, static demands content has focus. #geowebchat

@JJCzaplewski Oct 15, 12:27pm @mjfoster83 @erictheise @MapHugger If no one sees a map / cares about it, was it worth making? #geowebchat

@CostanzaAsnaghi Oct 15, 12:27pm This would be also my definition for wind maps: RT @mjfoster83 defining measure of success is circumstantial and subject based. #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:28pm @JJCzaplewski Or if 100K ppl are 10% enlightened by a “bad” map vs 100 ppl who are 100% enlightened by a good one? #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:29pm RT @BrookeEHarding: it also gives the illusion of real time data because of the animation whether it is trying to or not. #geowebchat

@kennethfield Oct 15, 12:30pm Form & function are two sides of same coin. One without other normally leads to issues in use #geowebchat

@mjfoster83 Oct 15, 12:30pm @mappingmashups @JJCzaplewski ‘enlightenment’ is probably the best measure of success, but remains nebulous at best #geowebchat

@MapHugger Oct 15, 12:31pm @mjfoster83 And yet, hordes of writers, artists, etc do exactly that. Fuzzy line between popular design & selling out #geowebchat

@MapHugger Oct 15, 12:32pm @JJCzaplewski Bingo Bango. #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:32pm Certainly we have to consider the needs of a map reader when designing & judging maps. But is that harder to determine online? #geowebchat

@redgeographics Oct 15, 12:34pm @mappingmashups Another static wind map (updated every 15 min iirc), less clutter and more measurable: buienradar.nl/weerkaarten/wi… #geowebchat

@mjfoster83 Oct 15, 12:34pm @MapHugger completely agree, very fuzzy. melding of popular design with effective data design and communication is a holy grail #geowebchat

@razsc Oct 15, 12:35pm A question from the non-geographer in the group. should/how geographers share map reading skills with the world? #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:36pm MT @all_mapped_out: I personally love it. Simplistic in design but effective in message. And it simply looks cool! #geowebchat

@MapHugger Oct 15, 12:36pm @mappingmashups Sortof. Online makes it easier for the map to be seen by people outside of its intended audience. #geowebchat

@CostanzaAsnaghi Oct 15, 12:37pm Hey, but I didn’t notice that the wind map is clickable and you can read the ID of each wind — cool!! #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:38pm @razsc Great question. I think in the past cartographers haven’t needed to share map-reading skills. Smaller audiences, and… #geowebchat

@MapHugger Oct 15, 12:38pm P.S. There is not and never has been a conflict between form and function. Nice-looking vis is not inherently less functional. #geowebchat

@JJCzaplewski Oct 15, 12:38pm @mappingmashups Different. Is the map reader using their phone on a dialup connection, or a powerful desktop computer w/ GFiber? #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:39pm …maps were much more similar to each other, followed the same conventions. W/ new techs we have more need to guide readers #geowebchat

@emacgillavry Oct 15, 12:40pm @mappingmashups do viral maps actually consider the map reader? They rather serve to highlight novel tools or map types/designs

@MapHugger Oct 15, 12:40pm When we see a pretty vis with bad data, we blame the fact it’s pretty. When we see ugly vis with bad data, we just call it bad #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:40pm For example, the wind map could include a walk-through that shows the reader that you can click! The #nytimes maps do this well. #geowebchat

@razsc Oct 15, 12:40pm @mappingmashups Yes. Now that maps are everywhere (some good, some bad) knowledge still stuck in the rooms of AAG #geowebchat

@CostanzaAsnaghi Oct 15, 12:41pm @razsc Excellent point, could be extended to different contexts/subjects. How does experts share their knowledge to non-experts? #geowebchat

@redgeographics Oct 15, 12:42pm @razsc @mappingmashups audiences are getting larger, which means cartographers are reaching out. I know #NACIS does. #geowebchat

@razsc Oct 15, 12:42pm @CostanzaAsnaghi True, although the ubiquity of maps makes this call much more prominent #geowebchat

@CostanzaAsnaghi Oct 15, 12:43pm @razsc Also, what should one include/exclude in a legend? #geowebchat

@mjfoster83 Oct 15, 12:43pm @razsc @CostanzaAsnaghi Map reading skills are largely congruent with critical reading skills #geowebchat

@JJCzaplewski Oct 15, 12:44pm @CostanzaAsnaghi @razsc The obsession with sharing spatial/associated tools lead us to Google maps mashups. #geowebchat

@emacgillavry Oct 15, 12:45pm Like the idea of walk-throughs to help audience understand the map and interactive elements of the interface #geowebchat

@razsc Oct 15, 12:46pm @mjfoster83 @CostanzaAsnaghi Very true. A skill that is much needed. Maybe geographer and datavis people can start with mapping #geowebchat

@razsc Oct 15, 12:47pm @JJCzaplewski @CostanzaAsnaghi is that a bad thing? :) #geowebchat

@JJCzaplewski Oct 15, 12:47pm @emacgillavry does a well designed UI require the user to spend time and energy learning it? I think not. #geowebchat

@tmcw Oct 15, 12:48pm @mappingmashups most carto-traditionalism just tells us it’s wrong to like what we like, but doesn’t present an alternative #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:48pm @emacgillavry At #NACIS2013 @albertocairo mentioned the need to guide readers thru a viz, telling them a story abt the data. #geowebchat

@CostanzaAsnaghi Oct 15, 12:49pm @emacgillavry Sounds good, although it rings a bell here. Text (legend, walk-through kind of thing) as opposed to graphics. [..] #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:49pm @tmcw or doesn’t present an alternative that is relevant to today’s context. Trad carto is full of tons of (old) alternatives. #geowebchat

@JJCzaplewski Oct 15, 12:50pm @mattwensing @stormpulse Was the result a better product? #geowebchat

@mjfoster83 Oct 15, 12:51pm @mappingmashups @emacgillavry @albertocairo completely agree, I would argue the guiding should be subconcious and intuitive tho #geowebchat

@CostanzaAsnaghi Oct 15, 12:51pm @emacgillavry [..] You need 2 different areas of your brain to interpret text and map. You get messed up for a fraction of sec #geowebchat

@JJCzaplewski Oct 15, 12:51pm @mattwensing Do you consider that a success? Was that the goal? #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:52pm @tmcw And is it really about what ppl “like”? When paleogeographers criticize web mercator it’s not so much smthg neogeos “like” #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:52pm @tmcw …those are usually things that neogeographers either aren’t thinking about, or they already know is a problem. #geowebchat

@emacgillavry Oct 15, 12:52pm @mappingmashups @JJCzaplewski was indeed thinking along lines of @albertocairo. Good design should keep that guide to a minimum #geowebchat

@JJCzaplewski Oct 15, 12:53pm @mattwensing That’s awesome and a huge success! A good argument for minimalistic UIs and “dont make me think” #geowebchat

@tmcw Oct 15, 12:54pm @mappingmashups or they understand compromise, technology and priority. #geowebchat

@vtcraghead Oct 15, 12:54pm @mappingmashups @tmcw Or hexbins :) #geowebchat

@redgeographics Oct 15, 12:55pm @mappingmashups @tmcw we ‘paleogeographers’ criticize web mercator for being what it is. But aren’t we all cartographers? #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:56pm @tmcw I suppose things like unclassed choropleths are “liked” by neogeographers, but make paleos angsty. #geowebchat

@tmcw Oct 15, 12:57pm @mappingmashups paleos still haven’t learned why web mercator succeeded and wms failed #geowebchat

@nonieatvp Oct 15, 12:57pm RT @tmcw @mappingmashups paleos still haven’t learned why web mercator succeeded and wms failed #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:58pm @tmcw Yes, and now that #d3js makes projections feasible, neogeos are showing they know as much about projections as any paleo. #geowebchat

@kennethfield Oct 15, 12:58pm Carto has always evolved due to tech. Usually takes step back before going forward again. We’re on that cusp. Evolve or die #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 12:59pm We totally have to have a #geowebchat about nothing but hexbins.

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 1:00pm Anyhow, we’ve hit the end of our hour for #geowebchat. Thanks to everyone who joined, especially you new people, and the #NACIS2013 crowd.

@JessiBreen Oct 15, 1:00pm @mappingmashups Maybe @atepoorthuis could be made to participate… #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 1:01pm Next #geowebchat will be in three weeks, on November 5. Topic TBD. Guest hosts are always welcome, let me know if you have a topic idea.

@kennethfield Oct 15, 1:01pm The paleo/neo thing is divisive. Leads to a lot of unnecessary preconceptions #geowebchat

@kennethfield Oct 15, 1:01pm Hexbins u say? ;-) #geowebchat

@mjfoster83 Oct 15, 1:02pm @kennethfield agree. Use the tools available to create, and tech is providing new tools. Carto is not dead, just changing. #geowebchat

@emacgillavry Oct 15, 1:02pm @CostanzaAsnaghi keep textual guide to a minimum and use ‘wayfinding’ graphics and other maps/views of the data: a #storymap ;-) #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 1:02pm @kennethfield Agreed, & I was throwing stereotypes around (partly) in jest. Was pleased to see more straddling at #NACIS2013 #geowebchat

@mappingmashups Oct 15, 3:11pm RT @MapHugger: @emacgillavry Let’s distinguish b/t stepping through the UI (bad) vs stepping through the Information (good) #geowebchat

@pasteinplace Oct 16, 3:15pm Wish I could have participated in yesterday’s #geowebchat. Looks like an awesome convo; might be good to look at architecture & other fields

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