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Friday, February 27, 2009

Driving your golf cart around Surprise, Arizona is fun until you find yourself on a highway or unable to cross a busy street. Enter the golf cart map, proposed by Councilman Richard Alton to help drivers of these vehicles get around safely. In fact, the map, useful to all, is simply a speed limit map; golf carts are safest on roads with speed limits under 35 mph.

- AZ Central

by Adena Schutzberg on 02/27 at 06:23 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

That’s the business model of Charles R. Carpenter who offers up scanned historic cadastral maps of the US on his company site, Historic MapWorks LLC. The pricing, per the site is complex and based on different prices for searching, printing and saving (as jpg or PDF). For now users include genealogists, title researchers, libraries and art galleries but the hope is to license the collection more broadly.

- Mass High Tech

by Adena Schutzberg on 02/27 at 06:08 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

“These developments are so new they are not on any maps. Not even Google.”

- NPR correspondent describing why a real estate buying tour bus got lost trying to find new developments outside Los Angeles. The story will be posted here later this morning.

by Adena Schutzberg on 02/27 at 06:03 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share

The research, done by Cimex, explored how well UK crime maps are serving the public identified obstacles to government goals. The findings suggest “the current crop of crime maps is in fact leaving us more bewildered and confused than before.” (I’ve got an e-mail in asking who funded the study. More on that when I get an answer.)

The problems found:

- Information overload and sites with too many details
- Color coded maps or graphs that did not match
- Overcomplicated navigation & highly inconsistent wording
- Lack of interactivity in maps (whether for area selection or crime rates)
- Insufficient filters for users to narrow down the information
- Unclear time periods or missing points of reference
- Lack of comparison options that put the data into a meaningful context

Suggestions for improvement:

- Maps need to be informative and should be colour coded in a meaningful way.
- Maps and data should be connected to allow users to verify data and build trust.
- Users like to compare and require points of reference such as national averages, neighbouring areas or previous time periods.
- Interactivity enhances the user experience and should help users filter the information according to their preferences.

- press release

by Adena Schutzberg on 02/27 at 06:00 AM | Comments | Bookmark and Share
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