We’re happy to announce a major development for maps in Flourish: the beta launch of our “Projection map” template.
Previously, we offered a range of ready-made map templates, but if you wanted to map other regions, you would have had to code it yourself, or persuade us to build a template. With our new template, you can upload your own GeoJSON and create data-driven maps for any regions you care about.
The new template, which is launched in beta, is designed to make it easy to create interactive, data-driven maps, without coding. You can:
- Use an existing map as a template or create a new one by uploading your own boundaries
- Join new data with the regions or countries without coding
- Choose the most appropriate projection for your map, from a growing range
- Fine-tune your map with advanced legend and coloring options.
Our cofounder Duncan Clark has made a four-minute video, showing off what the new maps can do.
If you have geospatial data in another format, such as a shapefile, you can convert it to GeoJSON using a tool like Mapshaper. Mapshaper also makes it easy to simplify your boundary data, which can decrease load time and improve performance.
Like before, we also offer ready-made maps for common use cases. Just drop your data (using the “merge” option) to make a shaded map. Some examples: European countries; Great Britain (local authorities); England & Wales (police force areas); England (regions); US (counties); US (states); London (wards); London (boroughs); Argentina (departments); Argentina (provinces); Brazil (municipalities); Brazil (states); Spain (communities); Spain (provinces).
Our maps offer a wide range of projections for you to choose from. Most thematic maps are best with equal area projections, rather than the default Mercator. For example, if you’re building a map of the US, try the Albers USA projection. (If you’re not sure what any of this means, check out Tom MacWright’s guide to map projections).
The new template gives you full control over your map’s legends and coloring. Set the color scale to be a continuous sequence, or divide it into bins or categories. Choose a sequential color scale to show the intensity of a scale, or a diverging one to highlight the differences between regions.
We’ve also made an internal change which means that you can visualize far more data than before. Whereas previously point maps were limited to a few thousand items, the new canvas-based maps can cope with far more data - we’ve successfully created maps with thousand or regions or hundreds of thousands of points.