Tag: mapping

by Paul Goodman

In May I worked with Plan Benin to improve its Violence Against Children (VAC) reporting system. The system uses FrontlineSMS and Ushahidi to collect and visualize reports of violence against children. Ushahidi develops open-source software for information collection, visualization and interactive mapping. While in Benin, I was frustrated by the lack of local data available [...] more »

by AJ Ashton

One of our favorite collaborative open data projects is [OpenStreetMap](http://www.openstreetmap.org). We’ve [talked before](http://www.pbs.org/idealab/2010/10/openstreetmaps-audacious-goal-free-open-map-of-the-world288.html) about the project’s goals, how its free and open nature is advantageous for non-profit and commercial applications alike, and how its open and near-real-time editing process is a major [advantage in rapidly changing situations](http://www.pbs.org/idealab/2010/12/how-openstreetmap-helps-to-curb-haitis-cholera-epidemic342.html), from city construction projects to natural disasters. The [...] more »

by David Cole

In the days following the earthquake in Japan, members of the US business community pledged more than $240 million to aid response and recovery efforts. Their challenge was to figure out how to dispense that money to the projects and people who needed it most. To help them visualize the scope of the disaster and [...] more »

by Bonnie Bogle

Until recently if you wanted to create a fast interactive map to use on your website you had two main options – design it in Flash, or use Google. With the prevalence of mobile devices, for many users Flash isn’t an option, leaving Google and a few competitors (like Bing). But we are developing open [...] more »

by Eric Gundersen

Plotting information — say survey data in Pakistan’s Federally Administered Tribal Areas or election results in Afghanistan — on any kind of map adds critical geo-context to the data. These maps quickly become move powerful when you start adding more custom overlays, showing data like where different ethnic groups live, high incidents of corruption, or [...] more »

by Justin Miller

We’ve talked here before about [TileMill](http://www.pbs.org/idealab/2010/08/tilemill-custom-maps-to-help-with-data-dumps-hyper-local215.html), an open source tool for creating your own custom map tiles (the individual pieces that make up a full map of a city, country, and so on). But what sorts of things can you do with these map tiles? One area we wanted to explore was using them on [...] more »

by Eric Rodenbeck

Since my last post, we’ve been busily working on extending the functionality of Dotspotting, the first project in our larger Citytracking project aimed at helping people tell stories about cities. It’s still, as my colleague Aaron puts it, very much in a “super alpha-beta-disco-ball” state — which mainly just means we don’t want anyone to [...] more »

by Robert Soden

In order to respond to the current cholera epidemic in Haiti, it’s essential that citizens, aid groups and others are aware of the locations of functioning health and sanitation facilities. The challenge is that maps showing this information don’t currently exist — at least not in a comprehensive and up-to-date way. Guensmork Alcin is attempting [...] more »

by Ian Cairns

On the [MapBox website](http://mapbox.com/) we describe TileMill — the project we’re working on with our 2010 Knight News Challenge grant — as [“a toolkit for rendering map tiles”](http://mapbox.com/tools/tilemill). To be more specific, it’s essentially a “glue layer.” TileMill is built on top of a cocktail of other open source mapping software projects, and its biggest [...] more »

by Robert Soden

In our [previous posts](http://www.pbs.org/idealab/2010/08/tilemill-custom-maps-to-help-with-data-dumps-hyper-local215.html) on [TileMill](http://mapbox.com/tools/tilemill), we’ve focused on how [open data can be used to create custom maps](http://www.pbs.org/idealab/2010/09/open-data-custom-maps-better-afghan-election-monitoring259.html)and [tell unique stories](http://www.pbs.org/idealab/2010/08/helping-dc-drinkers-and-bikers-with-custom-maps230.html). One question we run into a lot is, “Where does open data come from?” One exciting source is a global mapping project called [OpenStreetMap](http://www.openstreetmap.org/) (OSM). Founded in 2004 with the goal of creating [...] more »