Help me make a fancy-pants map.
January 23, 2012 10:59 AM   Subscribe

Looking for insider tips on how best to go about making this map almost exactly (with different data).

Does anyone have pointers on where to start?

I have two weeks, a safari books subscription, knowledge of HTML and css (but not JavaScript) and will probably make another few if it goes well. So it is worth learning long-term, if possible.

From the research I have done so far, I will have to learn how to use the Google maps API (which I know nothing about so far). I know Google has lots of tutorials and there are a lot of book articles on Safari books.

So...I am looking for specific suggestions (or shortcuts) on the best way to do that in a short time.
posted by OlivesAndTurkishCoffee to Computers & Internet (5 answers total) 9 users marked this as a favorite
Open source GIS software?
posted by rainperimeter at 11:40 AM on January 23, 2012

I'm on my phone so I'll take a closer look later, but my guess is Google Fusion tables. Also look into ArcGIS online and see if it will do what you want.
posted by desjardins at 12:17 PM on January 23, 2012

Best answer: Do you have Firebug installed? It lets you inspect the HTML, CSS, and JS on a page. Looking at the page, the real map is here, embedded in an iframe. The styling starts on line 74 of map.html. The data is hosted on Google Fusion Tables (line 159 of map.html).

Where is your data? If it's already online, and you can retrieve it as GeoJSON, use Leaflet to simplify your frontend code. If not, can you load it into Fusion Tables? The tutorials may be helpful.
posted by djb at 12:17 PM on January 23, 2012 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: thanks folks. I'm going to try diving into Fusion Tables.
posted by OlivesAndTurkishCoffee at 11:25 AM on January 24, 2012

Oh, and here's a step by step process to use a google doc spreadsheet for mapping via GeoJSON (if djb's GeoJSON link is too esoteric for you) and Tile Mill. Here are some maps made with Tile Mill.
posted by desjardins at 12:44 PM on January 24, 2012

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