Friday, November 30, 2012

Here comes the sunglasses

When I first saw this thing it was listed for $260.  It appears to be on sale now. Perfect for Christmas, eh?

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Sandy's emotional tweeting

The following is an animated "heat map" style map from SGI and the University of Illinois showing the positives/negative nature of tweets as Hurricane Sandy passed through. It's similar to me to the Sandy-related flight delays map from FlightStats that I posted about a few weeks ago. Thing is, SGI is supposed to have this amazing visualization technology as frankly this video, while interesting, leaves me unimpressed.  Why did they leave this as a choppy snapshot type almost stop-motion animation rather than showing the heatmap fluidly morphing over time?  That would have been very much easier to follow and see the patterns develop in relation to the hurricane. Did they only collect tweet data hourly or something?  Why so infrequently?  Is continuous tweet data not available? I can understand the wisdom of packaging the data in hourly tranches, but its very hard to follow this data in this animation with it being show choppy.

And, to get a little nit-picky, I'd like to see how this animation compares to a similar animation showing the "background" or "baseline" emotional tweet data.  In other words, what would this type of heatmap look like during a less meteorologically exciting period or baseline?  How did the emotional nature of tweets during Sandy differ from a similar, more mundane period?

This does, however, remind me of a pre-Twitter art project that's still running called "We Feel Fine"  that I posted about last year where somebody mapped the emotional nature of posts that it found on webblogs.  

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Archie's aliens

See that little blue-marble-style globe there in the aliens' main display?  We'll count that as a map in this Archie comic.  I've never seen the appeal of Archie.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Debatable end

You may be sick of them, but I still have this one final batch of election-related maps in comics .  These generally deal with that last presidential debate that was supposed to focus on foreign policy, so it was natural for cartoonists to adopt a geographic and/or global theme:
Nate Beeler

Bob Englehart

Jen Sorensen

Mike Luckovich

Jimmy Margulies

John Deering

Steve Greenberg

Monday, November 26, 2012

Meet you at the station

This is sort of a strenuous punchline.  Especially since the map only shows the two different ways anyway, no third way that could be a Lakeview trail... especially since that Mai Way would seem to offer some pretty excellent views of the lake... Why would a blocked highway prevent pedestrians from walking it?  Isn't that ideal pedestrian conditions for highway travel?  I think there's even a bit of a risk of wandering into reference to My Lai if they're not careful.

I appreciate the effort, but this is simply an overstretched punchline from the webcomic Basketcasecomix by Kelly Ferguson.... which is probably supposed to be part of the humor...let's hope.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

One Minute Physics

One Minute Physiscs has lots and lots and lots and lots of quick sharpie-illustrated videos that explain interesting and whimsical things about physics. Here's a rather map-ish one (well, globe-ish anyway):


Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Somebody tell Nebraska

Nebraska needs an intervention in this Sheldon webcomic by Dave Kellet.  It's got a reference to secession that is prescient given a recent rash of sore loser requests for secession on the White House petitions page.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Hurricane Candi-dates

As an election/Hurricane Sandy round-up, here's a batch of hurricane + election + maps editorial cartoons:
Bill Day

John Cole

Bob Englehart

Jeff Koterba

Markus Szyszkowitz

Monday, November 19, 2012

GPS kudzu

This item is from "Six Chix", a collaborative comic that's authored in turns by a variety of female artists. Today's installment come's from Isabella Bannerman.  Kudzu, for those of you who may not know, is an incredibly fast-growing invasive weed that has conquered many southern states, especially along freeway corridors.  As I found this one on Comics I Don't Understand, the point of the humor is a bit obscured... which, actually, may be the point.


Friday, November 16, 2012

Space Oddity

Here's a fun treat: graphic artist Andrew Kolb has illustrated (but not published) this children's book version of David Bowie's "Space Oddity".  I've inclued just one still from it below.  The whole thing is here.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Bruce Springsteen performances and other time lapses

Here's an animated map showing everywhere Bruce Springsteen performed. I'll give it interesting, but, I'm sorry, I've never been much of a Springsteen fan. Still: Animated maps are cool:

The thing is, animated time lapse map technology has been around for ages, but only this summer has it been made more accessible in the Google Maps platform. Here's a few more: Las Vegas grows:

The Amazon is raped and pillaged:

Drilling activity in North Dakota:

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Swingin' Ohio

We'll do a couple weeks of election round up in the Tuesday two-fers.  The first set is a collection generally about swing states but specifically about Ohio.  I want to start, however, with a pair that features a number of states that I'm going to count on our list of states specifically featured/mentioned on the blog. The first shows several of the swing states. The only one that is recognizable that we haven't posted yet is Colorado... and given that Colorado didn't even get featured during the Aurora shootings this may be the closest we'll get:

Daryl Cagle

 The next is a collection of envious anthropomorphic states who are getting sick of Ohio.  Here we'll get Arkansas, Idaho, Illinois, and Oklahoma clearly recognizable.  That only leaves nine states that we haven't posted about yet: Alabama, Delaware, Missouri, North Carolina, both Dakotas, Oregon, Washington, and West Virginia.  Which one do you think will be last?
Jeff Koterba

Jimmy Margulies

Jeff Darcy

Joe Heller

Nate Beeler

Kirk Walters

Daryl Cagle

Monday, November 12, 2012

Land of musical desolation

Bruce Eric Kaplan had this map-ish visual allegory  for aging musical tastes in The New Yorker.  The fact that "easy listening" is a rather dead genre that rarely plays even in grocery stores suggests  that this might not be an relevant cliche anymore.  I'm not sure that I've ever known older people to purposefully buy and listen to "easy listening".  Light rock, sure.  Even some flaccid jazz. But "easy listening" doesn't actually seem to enter into peoples' musical tastes.

Friday, November 9, 2012

...make good neighbors?

While it's not actually very easy to see The Great Wall of China from space, there are walls that are visible form space.  This image is a night-time view of the border between India and Pakistan where there is a big, floodlit fence designed to keep out smugglers and arms trafficking.  NASA's Earth Observatory has more.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Animated GIFs is funny

This compilation of animated GIFs uses only one GIF twice set to two different soundtracks:


Which one do y'all like better?

Here's the entire compilation:

Wednesday, November 7, 2012


Yesterday's post came from largely from Tom Pappalardo's blog.  Here's an item from his comic called "The Optimist" which, in this episode, features Connecticut... which brings the total number of states specifically mentioned/shown in our blog to 36.


Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Close to Home rage

So over the years we've posted a few examples of John McPherson's Close to Home, It's a comic that I used to follow closely, though it didn't ever deserve my attentions.  I had expectations about it that were never met.

Well here's a post by one Tom Pappalardo who is a professional graphics dude where he absolutely destroys McPherson's work by detailing the complete crapfest that it is. In that post he provides several examples, two of which are map-related.  I'm just gonna let his commentary explain these two...  though by the time his post got to these examples he was in quite a state so I'm going to edit the expletives.

***** ****, McPherson. Can’t you draw a ****ing car? Do you know what perspective is? Is that supposed to be fire in a trashcan? Is that an Asian man in that broken window? Is that rat the same size as that man’s head? When did car manufacturers stop producing vehicles with hood ornaments, exactly? Is that a knife on the ground? Do most brick wall dead-end alleys have floor trim along the ground? ***** ****ing ****, LOOK HOW ****ING TERRIBLE THAT CAR LOOKS. Is it 40 feet long? Is the front tire bigger than the back one? IT IS REALLY REALLY BAD.

So the rectangle that a comic is drawn in is called a border. The border defines what the comic panel is. Here, the artist has bisected his panel into two. Now, a clear-thinking person might go to the trouble to make the added borders match the existing borders. Maybe, oh I don’t know, use a ****ing ruler. Maybe even get extra-fancy and use a little white-out to erase the ends so the two panels look like two distinct boxes. But no no no. That would look too good. McPherson has no time for such things. He’s going for the lumpy line look. And he’s going to lazily slap it on at a jazzy angle, to highlight the blank wall above the computer monitor that has no keyboard. Other things to note: What is that woman supposed to be driving? a ’62 Ford Pickup? Look at those ****ing seats! The steering wheel! The copious headroom! I’m almost jealous. Also, what visual cue exists to let the reader know the woman in the top panel can hear what the man in the bottom panel is saying? He is not speaking into anything. She has no cell phone, no headset, no made-up dash-mounted speaker-thing with noise-lines emanating from it. She’s just a dead-eyed woman looking through a windshield that’s two inches away from her face, holding a shaking steering wheel with the skinny little deformed arm that is growing out of the top of her thigh.

Monday, November 5, 2012

And in the Dakotas...

In the spirit of the recent (justified) excitement about the weather here's a meteorological item from a recent New Yorker Magazine cartoon by Michael Crawford:
Is this a depiction of the anchorman being mean to the hapless TV weatherman?

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Sandy flight delays map animation

Here's a great animation put together by my friend Wm over at Flightstats showing the progression of flight delays as hurricane Sandy and the Frankenstorm moved through the weekend.