Thursday, May 17, 2012

Revolutionary Scrollbar Map Control

The Twin Cities Storm Ready Map is an interesting Google Map showing the time-line of a simulated tornado storm hitting Minneapolis–Saint Paul.

The map, created by Minneapolis Public Radio, shows the likely effects of a tornado hitting the Twin Cities. The simulated effects of the storm are partly based on asking people along the path of the simulated tornado what their preparations for a storm are.

The map itself features a really clever time-line control. To navigate through the time-line the map user just needs to use the browser scrollbar. As the user scrolls down on the page the Google Map stays stationary in position on the page but the sidebar scrolls down the time-line and the map updates to show the scenario for that part of the simulated storm.

This is the first time I've seen the browser scrollbar used to control a Google Map. Somehow I don't think it will be the last, as it is a very effective method for presenting a time-line on a Google Map.

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