Old-style mapping provides a new take on our poverty maps

Old-style mapping provides a new take on our poverty maps

John Burn-Murdoch writes:

Mapping data is tricky. The normal approach – as we used with our poverty maps today – is to create a chloropleth – a map where areas are coloured. But there is another way – and it’s quite old. This intricate visualisation by Oliver O’Brien (via spatialanalysis.co.uk) illustrates the demographics of housing throughout Britain in a style dating back to the 19th Century. Echoing the work of philanthropist Charles Booth, the map highlights groups of buildings rather than block-areas. The result is a much more detailed visualisation, allowing viewers to drill down almost to household level.

The meaningful display of data isn’t a new task. I suspect there are a number of visualization techniques that lie in library stacks waiting to be re-discovered.

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