There is no doubt that more and more platforms nowadays feature some sort of map for identification and navigation purposes. Imagine an on-line shop selling goods, that also has physical location, or a services company with a business headquarters; both these businesses would like for their potential clients to know how to find them and how to get to them. Also, being transparent and open about your location builds trust towards the person landing on your page.
The scenarios presented above are quite simple and require for the platforms to be integrated with the most generic mapping and navigation service, such as Google Maps. Although a simple feature, the map makes a great impact.
Maps should be everywhere!
In the case of businesses and projects where the platform tracks assets in real time with a certain precision, a GIS (Geographic Information System) may be used. The assets are layered out on a geographic canvas and monitored. GIS systems can be powered by Google Maps as well, and the canvas can be switched from a street view to a satellite view.
ArcGis of ESRI is a GIS system with a strong reputation and a big community around it. It uses all types of maps and mapping services to help layering out information. It also allows the users to build their own maps. John Nelson is a member of the ArcGis community that embarked on a journey of creating the tools for building a stunningly visual map representation, using cross-stitches. Not only that the maps look unique, but it’s relaxing for the eye to have the information projected on these types of minimalistic canvases. Have a look at the pictures below:
The needle-point ‘Sampler’ style can be found on the Esri (ArcGis) maps repository.
The style is free to use, no strings attached!
The inspiration for this material was the original article written by John Nelson, available here.
One example of ArcGis implementation is the Dashboard of the Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSEE) at Johns-Hopkins University monitoring the COVID-19 pandemics of 2020. It gathers data from sources such as World Health Organization, Center for Diseases Control and Prevention, central and local health department around the world, local media bulletins. The Dashboard offers a detailed view of the spread of COVID-19 cases around the globe. You can find the Dashboard here.