Posts Tagged ‘free geography tools’

ColorBrewer in ArcMap, updated to version 2.0 (via Weary Ramblings)

Tuesday, March 16th, 2010

cb2

[Editor's note: Struggling to pick colors in ArcMap or need to ensure your design meets federal accessibility standards for vision impairment? ColorBrewer.org has been updated to version 2.0 and now a ArcMap plugin brings some functionality right into your GIS. It's not clear to me if the "Terrain overlay" option for previewing the colors takes into account the muted nature / secondary HSV mixing of the colors, I don't recommend using that part just yet.]

Republished from National Cancer Institute.
Seen at Weary Ramblings.

ColorTool is a plugin for ArcMap™ (part of the ESRI ArcGIS Desktop suite) that helps users create choropleth maps using ColorBrewer color ramps.

The program runs from a button in the toolbar and opens a form that guides the user in choosing a classification scheme. For more information on the color options, visit ColorBrewer.org. ColorTool supports Quantile, Equal Interval, Natural Breaks (Jenks), and Unique Value classification types.

Download the ColorTool plugin . . .

Along with the plugin, the main ColorBrewer site has been upgraded to version 2.0

Republished from Free Geography Tools.

ColorBrewer is an online Flash app designed to help select appropriate data coloring schemes for maps, including sequential (choropleths), diverging (data with break points), and qualitative (discrete categorical data). I’ve covered version 1.0 before, and now ColorBrewer 2.0 is out. Not a huge number of functional differences, but some useful additions (and one disappointing subtraction):

  • More parameters are selected by drop-down boxes instead of buttons; bit faster this way
  • All controls are on the left side, making them easier to find
  • You can now choose between a colored background and a terrain background
  • Color transparency can now be set between 0 and 100%
  • More choices for background, road, city and border colors
  • You can now screen color schemes by appropriateness for color blindness, photocopying and print. In version 1.0, you only had icons showing which uses were appropriate, and these are still available in the “Score Card” tab at lower right
  • More options for color scheme export directly from the program, including an Excel file of all available color schemes, export in Adobe Swatch Exchange format (ASE), and in-program text hex color codes for copying and pasting into graphics programs.
  • No more map zoom; I miss this option.

Self-Colored Map Graphics (Free Geography Tools)

Friday, March 13th, 2009

[Editor's note: Mike bugged me back in January to cover his free tool to easily color a world map by country and download the resulting PNG image file. I notice that the Free Geography Tools blog has covered the same. Check it out below. Would be nice if the world map were projected (like Winkle Tripel).]

Republished from Free Geography Tools.
Originally published Feb. 5, 2009.

A while back, I covered a web app that lets you color in countries on a world map, then download the resulting graphic. Since then, it’s added more features, including the ability to add text, lines and labels. Mike Piaget writes to tell me of a similar app he’s created, the Customizable Map Of The World. Not as many options as the other app, but easier to use:

2-4-2009-1.48.12 PM

Click on a color next to the country name, then click “Update Map Colors” to color the country on the map; here, I’ve colored all world countries that start with the letter “A”. There’s only six colors available for country colors (including the default), plus one for water, but you can modify those colors with the appropriate hex code at upper right. To save a copy of the map to your computer, right-click on the image and choose the “Save Picture As ..” option (or the equivalent in your browser):

chart

Unfortunately, you’re limited to the single on-screen size; however, there are closeup maps available for the subregions Africa, Europe, Asia, the Middle East and South America (links at the bottom of the web app page).

Continue to Aneki to use the tool . . .

Google Maps With A Topographic Overlay (Free Geog Tools)

Wednesday, July 23rd, 2008

free geo tools logo[Editor's note: An alternative to TopoZone.com. Their server can lag a bit.]

Reprinted from Free Geography Tools blog (posted there April 14, 2007).

In addition to the standard image overlays of Map, Satellite and Hybrid for Google Maps, the Active Trails website has an additional overlay button – Topo, for topographic maps. At lower zoom levels, the 1:100K scale USGS topo maps are visible, but if you zoom in close enough, the larger-scale 1:24K maps become visible. Comparing Map, Satellite and Topo overlays, there appears to be a good position match between the three. Active Trails also has placemarks for many kinds of outdoor trails across the country (hiking, biking, equestrian, etc.) entered by site users. You can also install a network link in Google Earth that will let you view the trails there, similar in nature to the new Google Earth layer from Trimble.

Addendum: Fixed the Active Trails links (sorry about that). In the comments, MH points out the ACME Mapper 2.0 site, which is a better choice. It displays black-and-white USGS aerial photos, and also lets you print out a copy of the on-screen map with the push of a button.

Terrain-Shaded Relief In Google Maps (Free Geog Tools)

Wednesday, July 23rd, 2008

free geo tools logoReprinted from Free Geography Tools blog (posted there May 8, 2007).

The Geolabels website offers another image option button for Google Maps, along with the standard Map, Satellite, and Hybrid buttons: Relief. This button gives you views of the terrain in an area, shaded by light at an angle and color.

Go to the website, and either zoom in on an area of interest, or enter the name of a populated place in the box at the upper left and click “Go” (if you hit “Enter” after typing in the name, you’re likely to get an error screen). At left, you will get a list of world localities in the database that match that name; click on one, and the map will zoom in on that location (click on the image for a larger view):

You will also get a marker at the location of the name you entered, along with a message box showing latitude and longitude to way too many decimal places. You can zoom in for a closer view:

Or zoom out:

Major rivers and bodies of water, major highways, and populated places are also shown on the map. Keep in mind, though, that the color shading represents altitude, not vegetation, e.g. in the image above, all that green around Phoenix definitely doesn’t represent lush vegetation. Other sites offer contours or topo maps in the Google Maps interface, but the Geolabels website is a nice complement to them.

Modified 8/26/07 to update URL.

Panorama, Peak Identification And Viewsheds In Google Earth (Free Geography Tools)

Wednesday, July 23rd, 2008

free geo tools logo[Editor’s note: This is the website for the “Hey, What’s That” tool featured in the Where iPod app reviewed in this blog last week.]

Reprinted from Free Geography Tools blog (posted there March 14, 2007).

OgleEarth posts about Hey, What’s That?, a website that lets you enter a location and then gives you:

  • A panorama of what’s visible from that location, marking the position of peak geographic landmarks
  • A list of the peaks, and the ability to show their position relative to your location on Google Maps
  • Terrain profiles (elevation versus distance from the location to any point on the map)
  • A plot all the areas visible from that location in red on Google Maps (aka the “viewshed” or “weapons fan”)
  • Contour lines (zoom in for these)
  • Google Earth export of position, viewshed, horizon line and horizon extent. If the viewshed area is large, this might strain the memory capacity of lesser systems.

It uses 30-meter SRTM version 1 data for its calculations, so there may be some quirks depending on whether there are holes in the SRTM coverage for your area. They’re switching over to SRTM version 2 soon, which is better but still not perfect. It only works in the US right now, but according to OgleEarth, they hope to expand coverage worldwide. A cool site! Check the OgleEarth posting for more info.