Name subway information design

Lemongraphic created the Lemongraphic Subway, a simulation of using names as subway stations. 10 subway routes with different colours were made to experiment with data visualization in creating a subway sitemap information design. Using the process of categorisation, data processing, design elements in creating this unique art work!

This work uses vibrant colours on a dark background which brings out the colour a lot, allowing for an even easier read, if I saw this from a distance I would be pulled in and want to investigate. Colour options will definitely be considered when creating my own map.

Here’s a video of the layers of the map:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xg4XEPdXJgE&feature=youtu.be&t=6s

Images from http://www.lemongraphic.sg/2011/04/14/neon-subway-map/

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Berlin Subway Map Redesign

Tom Hayes redesigned the Berlin rail system map which contains both over ground and underground lines. Central to the map a circular and direct shape is used, then branching all of the other lines through dissecting the centre of this circle. This allows for the map to be more iconic and memorable. The logo and iconic elements were also recreated.

Hayes’ has adapted Henry Beck’s original design, putting a twist on the geography of the map. With this work as inspiration I will create a map with similar elements. I have no geographical map to actually follow, this allows me to shape the map in any way I want.

Images from http://www.behance.net/gallery/Berlin-Subway-Map/3672557

London Underground Tube Map

Harry Beck

Henry Charles Beck (4 June 1902 – 18 September 1974), is the man responsible for the creation of the London Underground Tube Map in 1931. He drew up the diagram in his spare time while working as an engineering draftsman at the London Underground Signals Office. London Underground was at first skeptical of Beck’s proposal as it was an uncommissioned spare-time project, and was introduced to the public as a pamphlet for a trial in 1933. The immediate popularity of it meant it was used, and the Underground has used topological maps to illustrate the network ever since.

Beck’s Concept

He believed that passengers riding the trains weren’t too bothered about the geographical accuracy, but were more interested in how to get from one station to another, and where to change. This resulted in his diagram being formed, having more of a resemblance to an electrical schematic than a true map, on which all the stations were more or less equally spaced.

 

Beck’s diagram of the London Underground will allow me to create the foundations of my own map for the use of technology and human systems. I will use a similar style with colour coding and simplicity.

 

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Images taken by myself in the London Underground

Maps research

Maps. They make everything a little bit better. They have the capacity to turn confusing and unimaginable information into visual masterpieces of understanding. And when we can see the information, we’re more likely to do something useful with it.

“references to celestial bodies have been found in cave paintings around the world” – maps and cartography date back to a possible 8000 years, this shows that even early humans could use maps and follow direction. With this information, it reinforces my use of maps, this is because I have discovered that maps, like pictograms, date back to early human history, this means that they are simple and easy to understand, possibly making it easy for other extraterrestrial life to understand.

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Image from ‘The Information Design Handbook’ by Jenn and Ken Visocky O Grady

Pictography

This page from ‘The information design handbook’ explains what is being shown on the Pioneer plaques from 1972, showing how pictography is used when the intended audience isn’t human.

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Image from ‘The Information Design Handbook’ by Jenn and Ken Visocky O Grady

Pictogram: is a graphic symbol that represents an idea or concept that conveys it’s meaning through it’s pictoral resemblance to a physical object (ideogram). Pictography is a form of writing which uses representational, pictorial drawings. Some of the earliest written symbols were based on pictographs (pictures which represent what they signify) and ideograms (symbols which represent ideas). Some ancient cultures that used pictography include the Chinese, Egyptian, and ancient Sumerians.

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Examples of Egyptian pictograms – image from http://www.xtimeline.com/evt/view.aspx?id=56566

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Image from ‘The Information Design Handbook’ by Jenn and Ken Visocky O Grady

I’m going to research iconography, maps, and the symbolism that is associated with maps, as these are to be used in my final idea. I feel a map will be the most appropriate way to display the systems idea as it branches out onto different areas, a map is easy to follow and to understand.

Ideas

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Idea 1 – infographics

This idea was formed on the first day of the brief as an initial response. It is meant to display a range of information, data, statistics and figures about different things on Earth, and is presented within a simple hollow image relative to the information, for example: if information was been shown of humans, then the image would be of a human being, if it were of animals, then the image would be of an animal.

The message

It’s giving information about our planet, educating people/extraterrestrials of humans, natural earth, nature, human factors and impacts etc. this is giving a slight;y more interesting look to boring information.

Conclusion

I felt this idea was over used and boring, many other people on the course had similar ideas to this one and therefore I felt it was un-original and would be boring.

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Idea 2 – DNA

This was another initial response on the first day of receiving the brief. The idea behind this was that the DNA strand would be some sort of interactive piece where one would be able to zoom into specific areas/strands of the DNA. I wanted this to be a timeline of some sort, possible timelines it could show included:

1) the beginning of earth and the progression of the planet until modern day

2) the beginning of life/man kind, and the progression of man, evolution

3) showing human events, achievements, advancements and milestones

4) showing bad things that humans have done e.g. war, famine, poverty

The message

This would show the history of something interesting, human life, planet earth, evolution.

Conclusion

I thought this idea had potential and would be a good idea to go through with, however the shear amount of information required to create this would be too much. Also, I didn’t know what format to tackle this in, would it be a large print which you could look at different sections? Would it be digital and interactive online? Would it be presented in a book? 

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Idea 3 – map

This idea is meant to show how transport looks every day, from a global scale, right down to a local scale, this would include air traffic, train routes, shipping routes and road traffic. This would be a form of data visualisation showing how transport looks every day from your hometown, city, country, continent, and the whole globe. Each mode of transport would have its own globe, and there would be a final globe with all transport networks presented. I thought that creating the globes from papier-mâché and pinning on routes with different couloured string would be a good idea.

The message

It shows how humans use logistics to make the world go round using transport, trade, business, and ultimately showing how busy earth is.

Conclusion

This idea is my second in line for creation, creating a physical object with information on transport and logistics would be a fun idea to go through with.

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Idea 4 – systems

This idea is will show the processes of an average human’s day to day life, this would show how everything revolves around us. Inputs, processes, flows and outputs would be illustrated for a variety of things that humans use such as electrical appliances, food, and money, and how it all links together.

The message

That humans require a lot of things and maintenance. This will show how humans live, and what the processes, inputs, flows and outputs go into them.

Conclusion

This idea interests me the most as I can look into what we would normal perceive as normal every day behavior, and see how it affects everything else and what impacts it has on things/places/others. I’m going to go through with this idea, and will research into maps as this will be the way I will present this.

Idea – Systems

After listing down ideas I could use for technology and related human geography, I came up with the idea of showing everyday life as a series of systems, these systems would show the inputs, processes, flows and outputs of things an ordinary human would do during their day e.g. when someone eats food:

-it begins with an animal or plant

-this is then harvested

-it’s then processed and refined

-packaged

-exported/imported/transported

-put into supermarkets and shops

-purchased

-prepared

-and finally eaten

I can present this in numerous ways, one being as an info graphic, or some form of map. I can apply this ‘system’ process to many things in human everyday life, some of these include transport, power/electricity, communication, and entertainment.

I came up with the idea during the listing of what I could look at in technology, and began writing my idea down on this page:

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Technology

I have chosen to focus on technology and the human geography that is associated within it. I looked at this brief as if our planet was being visited by another life form, and I listed things that I would be interested in about this new unidentified species., some of these included: technology, humanity, science, and natural earth (or whatever planet they would be from).

I decided upon technology as this is the topic that would most interest me and would also allow for humans to have new found knowledge of extraterrestrial technology.

The human geography sided of this would include how we use the technology we have, from everyday life, to industry, and how this all works together to make our planet sustainable, and allow for humans to live the way they do.