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The Importance of Visualisation – Mapping the Way Forward

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The Importance of Visualisation – Mapping the Way Forward

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Maps are more than just diagrams of the route from A to B – to draw one is to bring together the whole view of our surrounding world so that we can gain a better understanding of it. Even a single, simple example has the ability to delight, unsettle and reveal truths. In politically-charged environments an objective visual map can reinforce, influence or challenge held perceptions and beliefs, making them a vital tool in designing pliable, people-focused content systems that are fit for purpose. Their proactive and reactive qualities force ourselves and others to see things as they really are; to contemplate the relationship between them and how they vary together.

Presented at the Content Strategy Forum 2013 in Helsinki, Finland on 13th September 2013.

Maps are more than just diagrams of the route from A to B – to draw one is to bring together the whole view of our surrounding world so that we can gain a better understanding of it. Even a single, simple example has the ability to delight, unsettle and reveal truths. In politically-charged environments an objective visual map can reinforce, influence or challenge held perceptions and beliefs, making them a vital tool in designing pliable, people-focused content systems that are fit for purpose. Their proactive and reactive qualities force ourselves and others to see things as they really are; to contemplate the relationship between them and how they vary together.

Presented at the Content Strategy Forum 2013 in Helsinki, Finland on 13th September 2013.

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The Importance of Visualisation – Mapping the Way Forward

  1. MAPPING THE WAY FORWARD The importance of visualisation - Richard Ingram @richardjingram Friday, 13 September 13
  2. ©TrusteesoftheBritish Museum Babylonian map of the world Clay tablet, probably from Sippar, southern Iraq (c.700-500 BC) Babylon Friday, 13 September 13
  3. ©TrusteesoftheBritish Museum Hereford Mappa Mundi (‘Sheet of the World’) Inked parchment, the largest medieval map known to still exist (c.1300) London Edinburgh Friday, 13 September 13
  4. Friday, 13 September 13
  5. Administrative Friday, 13 September 13
  6. Administrative Social Friday, 13 September 13
  7. Administrative Social Military Friday, 13 September 13
  8. Administrative Social Military Political Friday, 13 September 13
  9. Walt Disney’s business map,1957 Depicts a central film asset and its supporting entertainment assets Friday, 13 September 13
  10. Growth of Las Vegas, NV 1984–2012 Google Earth timelapse constructed from satellite imagery Friday, 13 September 13
  11. Radial hierarchical organisation structure About as complex and contradictory as its name suggests Friday, 13 September 13
  12. John Rocque's map of London, 1746 Rocque deliberately left out the city’s unsavoury elements Friday, 13 September 13
  13. John Rocque's map of London, 1746 Rocque deliberately left out the city’s unsavoury elements Friday, 13 September 13
  14. John Rocque's map of London, 1746 Rocque deliberately left out the city’s unsavoury elements Friday, 13 September 13
  15. Map of organisation-wide content distribution Or that giant hairball the cat coughed up yesterday. Equally yucky. Friday, 13 September 13
  16. MAPPING OUT A STORY Beyond physical geography - Friday, 13 September 13
  17. Wabash river Ohio river Mississippi river ©TrusteesoftheBritish Museum Native North American buckskin map Possibly used in land negotiations with the British (c.1744) Friday, 13 September 13
  18. Distribution Distance Overlap Direction N A B C A B Friday, 13 September 13
  19. LIGHT HEAT SUN gives gives Exploded view Concept map Different maps, same basic building blocks Friday, 13 September 13
  20. Topological map Star map Different maps, same basic building blocks Friday, 13 September 13
  21. North South EastWest Find your coordinate system Anything can be mapped using pairs of opposites Friday, 13 September 13
  22. Expensive Cheap Slow Fast Find your coordinate system Anything can be mapped using pairs of opposites Friday, 13 September 13
  23. High Low Small Large Find your coordinate system Anything can be mapped using pairs of opposites Friday, 13 September 13
  24. N Plot your landmarks Start with the most prominent feature, then move outward Friday, 13 September 13
  25. N Plot your landmarks Start with the most prominent feature, then move outward Friday, 13 September 13
  26. N Plot your landmarks Start with the most prominent feature, then move outward Friday, 13 September 13
  27. FINDING OUR WAY The unfamiliar environment - Friday, 13 September 13
  28. Content ProcessesPeople Tackling that complex trinity Content governance is an important tool for this end Friday, 13 September 13
  29. web

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