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Magazine of Cartography


















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Metricity and visualization means of dynamic cartographic images

      Creation of animated cartographic images has led to the introduction of dynamic graphical variables. It means that all static graphic variables acquired another time dimension. Animations make possible changes in shape and size of the object, the color and its saturation, the internal structure and position of the symbol on the map. The most frequent animations are the ones that show:

  • the movement of signs within the map, for example, the motion of atmospheric fronts lines on synoptic maps, the relocation of planes;

  • the movement of arrows which indicate the direction of traffic flow, the movement of air masses, etc .;

  • the change of color, such as, gradual change of color or even it is ton, i.e. the effect of spectrum changing color, for example, when depicting the outspread area of infection or epidemic, color change when showing the temperatures;

  • the blinking of signs that draw attention to the important object on the map, for example, to a source of chemical pollution of the environment.

      The design of dynamic mapping symbols is being actively developed at the intersection of cartographic semiotics and computer design technologies domains.

      It is well-known that dynamics is inherent in every geographical object, process, phenomenon and affects their interrelation. Mapping the dynamics of phenomena and processes reflects their origin, development, change in time and space. For this purpose (of mapping the dynamics) are used the following basic cartographic approaches:

  • the dynamics of map symbols (depicted on a single map with the help of specially developed methods of imaging the dynamics of objects);

  • the dynamics of the cartographic basis, which is achieved by using a range of multi-time maps;

  • a combination of the dynamics of the cartographic basis with the dynamics of symbols.

      The combination of the first two approaches is used quite often. The creation of dynamic maps in some cases provides the possibility of their comparison, and the development of series of approved maps does not exclude introducing of dynamic characteristics in each map. Depending on the purpose of the dynamic map and the goals of the research, which are visualized by different kinds of cartographic dynamics, are used different mapping approaches, different ways of cartographic depiction of the mapping objects dynamics.


      Problem statement

As it is known from the theory of cartography, one of the properties of the map is its metricity, which helps to determine the differences of objects in various units of measurement. Such measuring and comparing actions can be made when evaluating the characteristics of mapping objects with practical research purpose. On the map can be shown the following metric characteristics of objects:

  • geometry:

  • distance (length), characteristic of the lines length;

  • area, the function of a geometric figure on a plane;

  • coordinates, units of determining the position of an object on a cartographic image;

  • dynamics:

  • time and space parameters;

  • measuring directly the dynamics of the objects movement and change in form;

  • color as a characteristic of spectral light, taking into account visual perception of the cartographic image by the user, namely, measuring chroma and saturation of color, its quantitative imaging.

      Key words: metricity, animated cartography, dynamic objects, visualization means.


      Received at editorial November 11, 2018


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