The visualisation is similar to what I did for the IRIS competition earlier but the difference is in the backend. Instead of reading a preset datafile and displaying it, this map here has a MySQL database in backend and queries it through PHP and visualises the result. It also has PHP based POST mechanism to send data to the database from the user. The best part is that none of the data in the image above is collected or entered by me (except for my two data points). It is rather generated by the people who individually entered their own locations.
Our team (Daniel, Kostas and I) have just finished doing 3 entries for the competition – An eye on IRIS, which aims to produce visualization of the data on esteems won by UCL researchers all around the world for which had been provided with a small subset of the IRIS database.
The starting point of this entire exercise was my short internship with Report Bee (A tech start-up with the vision to revolutionize the education industry). My job there was to inquire into the ways in which geographic visualization can enrich the analysis of the data present in the results of public examinations in Tamil Nadu and device a frame work for its implementation. It was an amazing ride to for me to start from absolutely zero, with an oversimplified view of things and vague ideas and go on to find out that the whole thing is neither simple nor easy as I thought. Though the exercise proved to have an extremely large scope to be covered in such a short internship, I picked up a lot of knowledge while figuring out my way.
The map highlights all the parks in green colour. The instruction are as below
Zoom and Pan can be done through the mouse as it is done in Google Maps.
Clicking on the map creates a Placemark and adds it to the map.
The ‘Eye’ button on the top right corner toggles the visibility of the Placemarks.
Double clicking the eye clears all the Placemarks.
The search box below navigates to the location typed on pressing the ‘return’ key.
Since I have covered a lot of basics in this exercise (Customized Base map, simple ways to input and output data, rudimentary ways to build a UI over the map), my next step would be learning to organize a data sets in a server side database and plotting it on the map and also to look into the Open Street Map API parallelly.
Update (21 August 2013): Was randomly reading about the Google speech recognition API for chrome and stumbled upon a simple way to integrate speech based input fields in websites. Updated the search box with speech recognition. In my trials it looks clean enough and works well enough. Wish there were more options in controlling the behaviour of the box but I think its just a matter of figuring out.
Update (21 August 2013):Updated the speech recognition again. Now press “ctrl+shift+.” and speak the place name the page directly takes you there. No more clicking and pressing enter.