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Mapping Census Information 3 Dimensionally

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#1
jpbellavance

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Hi all,

I am new to this site but have been amazed by all the beautiful maps I have seen. It is really inspiring.

I have a project I am working on to map two different types of relationships for U.S. States. They are education level in relation to cost of insurance premiums. I have the data I need but am trying to come up with a clean way of presenting both values in one map. I know I can use charts/pie graphics/graduated circles, etc. to do something like this but what I would rather do is have the states be extruded vertically to symbolize the cost of premiums and then also have them color coded by education level. Or vise- versa. I have not tried this before in ArcGIS. Are there third party companies that can do this if ArcGIS cannot.

Thanks for any information anyone can provide.

Jesse Bellavance

#2
CGIS

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Hi Jesse,

We do this sort of thing, but not with Arc - when 3D comes into play, we tend to move the data to a piece of software called 3DSMax. We have Manifold/Arc/Illustrator/Photoshop, but when it comes to 3D, 3DSMax is the tool for the job.

If you're interested in sub-ing out the 3d portion of the map let me know, I'd be happy to help.

#3
jpbellavance

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Hi Jesse,

We do this sort of thing, but not with Arc - when 3D comes into play, we tend to move the data to a piece of software called 3DSMax. We have Manifold/Arc/Illustrator/Photoshop, but when it comes to 3D, 3DSMax is the tool for the job.

If you're interested in sub-ing out the 3d portion of the map let me know, I'd be happy to help.



Thanks for the info. I tried their website but it is SNAFU. Thanks though. Could you post a pic of some of its mapping capability. May try their 30 free trial period.

Jesse
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#4
David Medeiros

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Adobe Illustrator has some 3d functions that might be able to help you extrude or lift the state polygons to represent one of your variables. I don't have any direct experience with this work flow however.

Another thought is to use a non contiguous cartogram with fill color representing one variable and area representing the other.

Posted Image

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#5
jpbellavance

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Thanks. I know I have seen some maps out there that have done what I am looking for but a Google Image search has come up <NULL>. However it was created it was probably using an app that sole purpose was to display this kind of information.

Something you might see on a CNN story or news piece.
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#6
Matthew Hampton

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Depending on your level of investment (time/cash), 3dsMax might be a little overkill for a project or two.

The 3DAnalyst extension for ArcGIS can extrude polygons based on a z-value (in your case premiums).

You might try Google Earth and KML as well. Google had a good post last week on creating "High performance KML" that you might find interesting.

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#7
CGIS

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Depending on your level of investment (time/cash), 3dsMax might be a little overkill for a project or two.


That's why I suggested outsourcing the 3D part to me - the cost and learning curve on 3DSMAx is steep, and in my opinion not worth tackling it yourself if you just need it here or there. This wasn't done by us, but here's something that was done in 3d software (can't say if it was 3DSmax, blender, etc.) http://www.istockpho...-states-map.jpg

#8
jpbellavance

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Depending on your level of investment (time/cash), 3dsMax might be a little overkill for a project or two.


That's why I suggested outsourcing the 3D part to me - the cost and learning curve on 3DSMAx is steep, and in my opinion not worth tackling it yourself if you just need it here or there. This wasn't done by us, but here's something that was done in 3d software (can't say if it was 3DSmax, blender, etc.) http://www.istockpho...-states-map.jpg



How much does the software run for the different versions?

J.
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#9
david17tym

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Following Matthew's suggestion

The attached was created in arcscene

ESRI dataset of population stats

Attached Files



#10
David Medeiros

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Taking the OPs desire for a "clean" presentation, I'm not sold on the 3d map as an effective means of conveying data. Humans are not very good at evaluating and comparing volume by eye. The relative changes in volume and their significance may be lost on the viewer. Additionally 3d maps, depending on the perspective, hide a lot of information as one block covers up portions of adjacent ones. It can look cool, but I don't think it qualifies as "clean". Take with requisite of salt : )

If you do decide to go with the ArcScene extruded polygons I would simplify your map first. Get rid of as many of the small boundary details as possible while maintaing topology to create smoother extruded surfaces. Good luck!

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#11
CGIS

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[/quote]
How much does the software run for the different versions?
J.
[/quote]
Last time I looked, 3DSMax is approx $3,500, Vray (a render engine http://www.chaosgrou...en/2/vray.html) costs about $1400, then you've got various hardware costs if you want to get the most out of the software.

#12
razornole

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Taking the OPs desire for a "clean" presentation, I'm not sold on the 3d map as an effective means of conveying data. Humans are not very good at evaluating and comparing volume by eye. The relative changes in volume and their significance may be lost on the viewer. Additionally 3d maps, depending on the perspective, hide a lot of information as one block covers up portions of adjacent ones. It can look cool, but I don't think it qualifies as "clean". Take with requisite of salt : )

If you do decide to go with the ArcScene extruded polygons I would simplify your map first. Get rid of as many of the small boundary details as possible while maintaing topology to create smoother extruded surfaces. Good luck!


Couldn't agree more. I would not even consider a perspective or 3d map for statistical data. Take David17's map for example, where do CT, NH, and VT stand? There are many better tried & tested methods to produce multi-variable maps.

kru
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Strabo 22AD




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