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Participatory Mapping: New Data, New Cartography by Jean-Christophe Plantin

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4

Maps and Web-based Data

As maps become more similar to other Web platforms, they inherit the same challenges but also the same data collection methods. What data sources are available online? What processing work is required to make the data comply with the characteristics of the map? How can the various actors manage the potential technical flaws to guarantee the validity of the map?

A representative corpus of techniques for creating maps online has been compiled to address the above questions1. The selection is made according to the following criteria:

– the maps are mashups: they use a base map to show third-party data; they are not used for GPS navigation or mobile applications involving geolocation;

– they are geographical: this excludes Website graphs, mind maps and other non-geographical visualizations;

– they are produced by amateurs, i.e. non-geographers and non-cartographers;

– they are available online: this excludes offline maps that require specific software to be consulted such as GIS;

– they are thematic: the base map is used to show data in a space, excluding purely topographic maps;

– they are created for the Web: as opposed to digital maps which are imported on the Web.

Since the creation of this list of maps2, one of the mapping applications it refers to is no longer online3, and others are encountering problems in accessing data. In the first case, the map in question was removed from the list, which made the number of maps drop to 19. Regarding the second ...

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