Community Indicators for Your Community

Real, lasting community change is built around knowing where you are, where you want to be, and whether your efforts are making a difference. Indicators are a necessary ingredient for sustainable change. And the process of selecting community indicators -- who chooses, how they choose, what they choose -- is as important as the data you select.

This is an archive of thoughts I had about indicators and the community indicators movement. Some of the thinking is outdated, and many of the links may have broken over time.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Mapping Made Easy

Community indicators are often more powerful when mapped. And interesting data, when mapped, can often tell us something more than any table or graph might.

Now it's getting easier and easier to make maps happen. Lyle at his new PublicValue blog pointed me to a news article about how widespread and easy mapping tools have become.

The New York Times ran an article called With Tools on Web, Amateurs Reshape Mapmaking 27 July 2007. the article begins this way:

On the Web, anyone can be a mapmaker. With the help of simple tools introduced by Internet companies recently, millions of people are trying their hand at cartography, drawing on digital maps and annotating them with text, images, sound and videos.

In the process, they are reshaping the world of mapmaking and collectively creating a new kind of atlas that is likely to be both richer and messier than any other.

They are also turning the Web into a medium where maps will play a more central role in how information is organized and found.

Here are a set of resources that can turn anyone into a mapmaker:

Google Maps: My Maps
Google Earth (download)
Microsoft maps (for Virtual Earth download, click on "3D")
Microsoft Collections

What can you do with maps? Check these links out!

Graffiti in Federal Way, Wash.
Hydrofoils Around the World
Cheap Eats in New York City
Illinois Yarn Stores
Biodiesel Stations in New England
Trace Tribute Endurance Horse Ride by April Johnson
Geotagged Photos From Flickr Users
Favorite Places to Eat In Seattle While Boating
Tour de France Stages
Top 10 Oregon Vineyards

Do you have a favorite map to share?


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