Resources for Map-making
There are MILLIONS of online learning resources regarding map making, and I also learn the best via online materials. This is a storage space for myself on materials / papers / books / websites / codes related to map making. If you find this place useful, I will be more than gratified.
Last Updated: 17 Aug 2021
Table of Contents
- Cartography - Colour Selection
- Cartography - Choosing classification method
- Cartography - General
- Map Projections
- Spatial Statistics with GIS
- Charts and data visualisations
Cartography - Colour Selection
In most cases, Color Brewer would save your life in selecting colours. In general, think about if your color scheme is: 1. Colour-blind friendly; 2. Photocopy friendly and 3. For sequential, diverging or qualitative data
- Color Brewer
- a diagnostic tool for evaluating the robustness of individual color schemes
Cartography - Choosing classification method
Classification affects how you would interpret the results of chloropleth maps!
- Types of colour schemes
- Overview of sequential, diverging, and qualitative colour schemes
- Statistical Mapping (Enumeration, Normalization, Classification)
- Overview of data classification methods
Types of Chloropleth Map Classification Methods, from Geospatial Analysis 6th Edition, 2020 update
|Unique values||- Each value is treated separately
- Each value is mapped as a distinct color
|Manual classification||- Manually specifies the boundaries between classes required as a list, or specifies a lower bound and interval or lower and upper bound plus number of intervals required|
|Equal interval, Slice||- The attribute values are divided into n classes with each interval having the same width=Range/n.
- For raster maps this operation is often called slice
|Defined interval||- A variant of manual and equal interval, in which the user defines each of the intervals required|
|Exponential interval||- the number of observations in each successive interval increases (or decreases) exponentially
- Intervals are selected manually
|Equal count or quantile||- Intervals are selected so that the number of observations in each interval is the same.
- Ideally the procedure should indicate the exact numbers assigned to each class
|Percentile||- Standard version equal percentages (percentiles) are included in each class
- a variant of equal count or quantile plots. .
- Example: <=1%, 1% to <10%, 10% to <50%, 50% to <90%, 90% to <99% and >=99%
|Natural breaks/Jenks||- Widely used within GIS packages
- variance-minimization classification technique
- Breaks are typically uneven, and are selected to separate values where large changes in value occur.
- Could be significantly affected by the number of classes selected and tends to have unusual class boundaries.
- Unsuitable for map comparisons
|Standard deviation||- The mean and standard deviation of the attribute values are calculated, and values classified according to their deviation from the mean (z-transform)
- Usually at intervals of 1.0 or 0.5 standard deviations.
- often results in no central class, only classes either side of the mean and the number of classes is then even.
- central class (defined as the mean value +/-0.5SD)
|Box||- A variant of quartile classification designed to highlight outliers
- Typically six classes are defined, these being the 4 quartiles, plus two further classifications based on outliers. These outliers are defined as being data items (if any) that are more than 1.5 times the inter-quartile range (IQR) from the median. An even more restrictive set is defined by 3.0 times the IQR.
- Similar ideology as Box plots
Cartography - General
- A bulk resource list for making good maps
- The Complete Color Harmony, Pantone Edition (Leatrice Eiseman)
- understand emotional perceptions of colour
Use Project Wizard to select the appropriate projection without knowing the details and maths behind projection!
- Projection Wizard
- A web application that helps cartographers select an appropriate projection for their map
- Geographic vs Projected Coordinate Systems
- GCS and PCS explained
- xkcd: Map Projections
- xkcd is always relevant
- Equal Area Projected Maps for ArcGIS Online
Spatial Statistics with GIS
- De Smith, Goodchild, & Longley (2018) Geospatial Analysis, 6th Edition
- An Overview of key terms for GIS & spatial analysis
- Twitter Thread for spatial stat in epidemiology
Charts and data visualisations
Most importantly, remember the principle of proportional ink (Bergstrom and West 2016):
The principle of proportional ink: The sizes of shaded areas in a visualization need to be proportional to the data values they represent.
- Fundamentals of Data Visualization
- “a guide to making visualizations that accurately reflect the data, tell a story, and look professional."
- The Truthful Art: Data, Charts, and Maps for Communication (Alberto Cairo)
- Overview of “creating” meaningful and useful graphs and charts