Saturday, November 03, 2018

XKCD Cartography


XKCD #2067 2018 Midterm Challengers is an interactive map of all the challengers in the 2018 midterm election. The size of the politicians' names on the map is determined by the importance of the office and the challenger's chances of success.

If you click on a challenger's name on the map you can visit the candidate's website. You can also click on place-names on the map to view a location's Wikipedia page. The place-name data on the map has been sourced from Wikipedia. This makes for some interesting place-names, for example there is a place called 'Port Chicago Disaster' in Sacramento, a '1951 NFL Championship Game' in Los Angeles and a 'Death of John Lennon' in New York.

Despite these strange results from Wikipedia the map is still a great visualization of the most important races in next week's election.

This isn't Randall Munroe's first venture into mapping on XKCD. In fact XKCD is required reading for all students of cartography. It can teach you about Map Projections

XKCD can teach you why America's Favorite Halloween Candy map is rubbish (XKCD: State Word).

XKCD also has an important lesson on why normalizing your data is very important (XKCD Heatmap).


XKCD #1110 Click & Drag isn't a map but the last frame does resemble an interactive map in so far as you can click & drag the frame around like a slippy map. If you click on the last frame you can discover a very huge world lies beyond the frame's borders. In fact, thanks to dividuum, you can actually explore this frame in a Leaflet powered interactive map.
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