Proportional map: federal land ownership
Posted 19 June 2008 - 03:30 PM
Head of Production, Hedberg Maps, Minneapolis, MN USA
"Life's too short for bad maps"
Posted 20 June 2008 - 09:44 AM
...from a cartographic perspective, I was really struck by the elegance of the solution on this map. It looks like simple statistical maps from decades past, but somehow I've gotten so used to choropleth solutions for percentage or density, this would never have occurred to me. Brilliant and simple.
I agree that it's more striking than a chloropleth solution. However, there seems to be some sort of optical-illusion thing going on (at least in my head). When I look at states that are roughly 50% federally-owned (such as OR, ID, and AZ), it looks like more than 50% of those states are red. Intellectually I know this is because most of the area in a polygon is around the edges, but visually I have a hard time forcing my brain to see it that way.
professionally: cartographics manager for Dex One
personally: cartophile and road-geek (my website)
Posted 23 June 2008 - 07:40 AM
I think it often helps to think about what the main message that the author wants to communicate in this piece is. Is it the geographic distribution of federal land? The comparison between states - relative and absolute? The ratio per state? Or all of them.
If you look at it - the top 10, bottom 10, lists on that web page are extremely powerful in informational content as well - and may be better in communicating some messages - or perhaps through a bar chart.
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