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need recommendations: easy web-based tools for thematic mapping?

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#1
Tim Stallmann

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Hey y'all! I'm going to be teaching a couple of mapping workshops with young people in the next few months and am trying to decide what toolset to teach. We're going to be doing thematic mapping mainly with variables at the county and school-district level... I'm looking for something that's web-based so we don't have to go through installing software during the workshop; that's relatively easy-to-use and is likely to stick around and stay maintained (so that folks can keep making maps in the future); and that folks can use to upload or input their own data and relate it to a polygon layer (which as far as I can tell rules out both google maps + fusion tables and ArcGIS.com). The focus of this is more on exploratory data analysis than map design, so I'm more interested in how quickly and easily folks can bring in new variables and display them than being able to tightly control the final look of the map...

 

Any ideas? What have y'all used?



#2
Dennis McClendon

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Does it have to be web-based?  And are the school district polygons vital?

 

I might recommend MagicMaps as a way to very quickly make national-state-county maps with different data sets.  

 

If you have shapefiles of the school districts, etc., perhaps have a look at Mango Maps.


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Dennis McClendon, Chicago CartoGraphics
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#3
gregsd

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Have you looked at indiemapper?


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#4
David Medeiros

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Google Fusion Tables is pretty good at doing basic thematic mapping. The link below is to a tutorial I just found that may be of some help as well:

 

http://www.peteraldh...sion_Tables.pdf


GIS Reference and Instruction Specialist, Stanford Geospatial Center.

 

www.mapbliss.com

 


#5
Fran├žois Goulet

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Too bad you can't install software. Tilemill + Mapbox would be absolutely perfect for this.

 

With CartoDB, very easy to use, you can do all the analysis you want since it has PostGIS in the background. The learning curve may be a little steep for your purpose though 



#6
Tim Stallmann

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I ended up making a pre-packaged shapefile with a bunch of variables attached and then using IndieMapper in the workshop... it went fairly well; the balance of ease-of-use with flexibility-of-options in IndieMapper was I think just about right...






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