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Map Design

  • By: Robert Edsall
  • In: Encyclopedia of Geography
  • Edited by: Barney Warf
  • Subject:General Geography, Earth & Environmental Science

Maps remain the primary means of communicating arguments and exploring information in geography. Clear and compelling map design can propel research in geography, while poor design can hinder it. Good map design results from careful planning and consideration of choices that are made throughout the cartographic process. Some of these choices are informed by cartographic theories of abstraction and representation, while others are informed by psychological theories of vision and perception, and still others are informed by artistic theories of harmony and balance. These choices apply to both the map itself and the map image, defined here as the completed map document: a printed page, a journal illustration, an interactive animated Web application, or a visualization system designed for data analysis and exploration.

Aesthetic Considerations: Lessons ...
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