Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Bike Map, finished version at end of class on Tuesday 9-23-08

Bike Map, more progress

Now we get down to the detail work, where I have this huge map, and it's impossible to see all of it at once, much less know if the labels look ok. one can zoom in, but how do you then know you aren't missing out on some place? i guess that's why we put graticule on the map, huh. so when I zoom in to B1, I can check that off some list and move on to B2. Dang, that's one of the 10 map elements that could be on every map that I didn't remember when I was taking my test. Graticule. What a cool word, maybe I'll remember it now.

Today I remembered my jump drive, but forgot to bring a pencil and my text book. I am not always this crazy. It is really just Tuesdays.

Here is what I have at the moment at several zoom layers. My roads annotation seems to have disappeared again. Sort of weird. It had reappeared last week by the end of class.

Really it looks much the same as it did two weeks ago. Actually I think it looked better two weeks ago. Depressing.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

An open letter to Asheville City Transit

(now that I have your attention. ... I posted this in my comments, but people often forget to read the comments of comments)

Thank you for your feedback, paul -v-.

I created the Asheville Transit layer as part of a final project for an intro to GIS class I took last semester at AB Tech. I was naive and thought it wouldn't be difficult to create! I georeferenced an Asheville City transit map to a Buncombe Streets layer, and then I selected the portions of the streets that overlapped and exported them into the various routes. When I was done with all the routes, I consolidated them all into one layer. I am rather proud of it. There are a few mistakes, the digital equivalent of typos. and I believe I only put the daytime routes on it.

It was very educational and I know much more about Asheville Transit Routes than I did before.

The assignment was to perform some kind of analysis. I compared the transit map to population density information gleaned from 1990 TIGER/Census data and found that while the transit routes match up pretty well with areas of high population density, the Enka-Candler area has a much higher population density than other places that Asheville Transit serves, like Weaverville and Black Mountain. And Asheville Transit only goes to the DMV and then stops. I also applied a buffer -- I think I put it at two miles -- around transit routes, assuming that most folks desperate enough could be reasonably expected to walk two miles to the nearest bus stop. Therefore, I only looked at areas of high pop density which were outside of the 2-mile buffer.

I concluded that while my census data was almost 20 years out of date, it seemed reasonable that the population of the Enka-Candler area has only increased in the last 20 years, and thus is all the more in need of transportation further out Smokey Park Highway than the DMV.

I also looked at the density of elderly folk and renters, those being the closest I could approach to the demographics that might be expected to ride Asheville Transit. And these, too, came out to be high in the Enka-Candler area and indeed higher there than in other places that Asheville Transit does serve.

It was the overambitious naivete of a beginner that caused me to embark on such a project in ArcMap, but it was also that I worked a boring job as a data-entry clerk and it was a great opportunity to come home and apply my brain to something interesting and analytical.

I suppose I should have told someone at Asheville Transit sooner about my results. But then, I was just a data-entry clerk at the time, and my analytical thoughts seemed pretty irrelevent in the grand scheme of things.

Unfortunately I cannot find a copy of the maps or analysis that I turned in as my final project. This is what the Asheville Transit project looked like in its initial stages, before I finished the transit layer and added the buffers:


Tuesday, September 9, 2008

No Subject

well, I only got one dot when i attempted to add the x,y data. even though there were tons in the attribute table. does not make sense. nonetheless, my map is beginning to look sorta awesome.

The top picture is zoomed out to buncombe county. the lower one was at what arcmap claimed was "100%" therefore, i assume it best represents the scale that would show in my printed out version.

well, it's a work in progress anyway. light blue is asheville transit routes. purple is bike routes. red is highways.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

LEAF, font advice

Here is my belated LEAF map. I know, it's ugly. I ran out of time to make it less so.

Re: Our lecture on fonts yesterday, if anyone wants advice on fonts, I do carry a lot of them around in my head. Have spent last 4 months trying to figure out what is a good font for a construction business? an ice cream parlor? a Mexican restaurant? a real estate business? a cattle auction business? a political party?

When I first started, I was totally intimidated by fonts, but if you use them, you'll learn them, and you'll learn what works and what doesn't work and messes up when you try to pdf it.

Just skimming off the top of my head, maybe not really very applicable to cartography, some nifty fonts:

delta hey max nine and zorba are two of my personal favorites. These are funky, playful fonts you don't get to use very often.

for a more professional looking font but still one that is artistic looking, I generally go for Californian FB.

for a solid, '90s feel, I go with one of the versions of Futura -- I forget which it is I'm thinking of.

A totally macho, plumbing and power tools and heavy equipment kind of font is Impact.

a classical neoGreek-looking kind of font is Papyrus.

There are a lot of loopy, pretty fonts meant to look cursive-inspired. You can find many of these by going through and trying fonts with French-sounding names. My personal favorite of these though is Marigold. But you have to have pretty large text for it to be properly legible. Another pretty one to sometimes experiment with is Centaur.

Of course, most of the time, (and especially with cartography as opposed to ad design) you are looking for a quieter more toned down font, something that looks professional but doesn't yell it. I don't remember the names of these as well, and there are tons of them. Gill Sans is what you use when you want something like Arial that isn't Arial. Blue Highway is one that is playful but in a quiet kind of way. Bookman and the Berhards and Bernhards are some that are similar to Times New Roman, but aren't Times New Roman, and they can be very attractive. Courier is a typewriter kind of looking font. Palatino and Garamond are nice.

The main thing with fonts is to just be patient. You can picture the font you want in your head. Something which fits your criteria is out there. There are tons of them. You just have to be willing to go through and find it.

Monday, September 1, 2008