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Geovisualizations
by Christoph Hormann
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Generalized geodata products

Generalized coastline data

generalized coastline illustration 1 generalized coastline illustration 2

Coastlines are one of the most important elements to display in maps. More elaborate information on the importance of generalization for a well readable coastline representation can be found in an essay I wrote. The coastline data I offer here is generalized using a technique I developed. For good results the generalization needs to be performed specifically for the map projection used and should be adjusted to the scale and the style of the map.

A set of coastlines generalized for web maps in web mercator (EPSG:3857) projection at zoom levels 1 to 6 is available for free under CC license.

data information:
data type generalized coastline data
coverage global
available projections/variants EPSG:3857 for web maps zoom 1-8, EPSG:3031, EPSG:3995
custom production any other projection, adapted to the map style
license constraints based on ODBL OpenStreetMap data, attribution required.

Generalization of the coastline serves to remove detail from the data that can not properly be displayed at the target map scale leading to a cleaner and better readable map while preserving key features of the coastline that would not properly show in a direct rendering of the raw data.

What parameters are best for the generalization depends on the kind of map the data is going to be used for. Print maps call for different settings than maps for screen display. It is also important to generalize for the map projection used.

raw coastline data generalized coastline data rendering example

If you are interested in generalized coastline data use the form below to describe your needs and i will get back to you.

Data inquiry

You can use this form to make your inquiry, it is also available via encrypted connection. If you prefer you can also make your inquiry via email of course, at your option also with encryption).

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Generalized rivers and lakes

generalized lakes illustration 1 generalized lakes illustration 2

Generalization of the lakes is using a similar technique as for the coastlines although in combination with the rivers things get much more complicated. See the more elaborate description of the process for details.

An example for use of generalized rivers and lakes in a map can be found in the demonstration map. As a result of the significant processing required this is currently not regularly produced for the whole globe but custom local processings can be made upon request.

data information:
data type generalized rivers and lakes data
coverage global
available projections/variants only custom production
custom production any projection, data source and extent
license constraints none except for the source data

Like in case of the coastline generalization of the lakes and rivers serves to remove detail from the data that can not properly be displayed at the target map scale leading to a cleaner and better readable map while maintaining the major drainage patterns created by the rivers.

What parameters are best for the generalization depends on the kind of map the data is going to be used for. Print maps call for different settings than maps for screen display. If only the major rivers are supposed to be shown or also the smaller ones depends on what other elements are displayed of course as well.

raw lakes data generalized lakes data rendering example

If you are interested in generalized lakes and rivers data use the form below to describe your needs and i will get back to you.

Data inquiry

You can use this form to make your inquiry, it is also available via encrypted connection. If you prefer you can also make your inquiry via email of course, at your option also with encryption).

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Generalized glacier data

generalized glaciers illustration 1 generalized glaciers illustration 2

A generalized global dataset of all glaciers is offered for use in map rendering. This is based on a combination of different data sources - together forming the most detailed and up-to-date glacier data set currently available. As with the lakes and rivers an example of use of this data can be seen in the demonstration map.

data information:
data type generalized glacier data
coverage global
available projections/variants EPSG:3857 for web maps zoom 1-8, EPSG:3031, EPSG:3995
custom production any other projection, adapted to the map style
license constraints partly based on ODBL OpenStreetMap data, attribution required. Custom productions without OSM data can be provided without contraints but limited coverage.

raw glacier data generalized glacier data rendering example

If you are interested in generalized glaciers data use the form below to describe your needs and i will get back to you.

Data inquiry

You can use this form to make your inquiry, it is also available via encrypted connection. If you prefer you can also make your inquiry via email of course, at your option also with encryption).

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Generalized settlement polygons

generalized settlement polygons illustration 1 generalized settlement polygons illustration 2

Cities and towns are displayed in many maps but their extents are often based on outdated data. A custom designed processing system is used to process detailed building and landuse data from OpenStreetMap into generalized polygons outlining the settlements that can be used for accurate depiction and lower magnifications where the original data is too detailed to be used directly. A more elaborate description of the process and the purposes of such data can be found in a separate background text. There you can also find a sample data set.

data information:
data type generalized human settlement data
coverage global
available projections/variants only custom production
custom production on customer requests
license constraints based on ODBL OpenStreetMap data, attribution required.

Like for other map features generalization of settlements serves to remove detail from the data that can not properly be displayed at the target map scale leading to a cleaner and better readable map. In addition the process used aims to unify varying styles of source data in different regions.

Since settlements often have no clearly defined boundary rendering them is much more a subjective matter of style than for other features. Processing needs to be customized for the map style for good results.

raw building and urban landuse data generalized settlement data rendering example

If you are interested in generalized settlement data use the form below to describe your needs and i will get back to you.

Data inquiry

You can use this form to make your inquiry, it is also available via encrypted connection. If you prefer you can also make your inquiry via email of course, at your option also with encryption).

human verification Please enter the code you can see in the image on the left to verify you are a human and not a spamming script.
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Todays featured image:

The Transantarctic Mountains
The Transantarctic Mountains
Landsat mosaic showing the Transantarctic Mountains between the Nimrod Glacier in the south (top) and McMurdo Sound in the north (bottom). Includes... [more]
Design and Content Copyright 2015 by Christoph Hormann
last updated Mon, 18 May 2015 15:37