Crowdsourced Cartography

Our recent work reminded me of this project that started a few years ago. Crowdsourcing and points of interest are really nothing new to the social web, but I thought this project was really interesting in that it actually allows you to edit the existing geographic structure.  As shown in the picture below, if you find inconsistencies between your map and the real world, you can go ahead and change it for yourself.  This really calls into question the role of the cartographer, as we discussed during the readings on Tuesday.  Not only is his role removed, but his original work can actually be changed.

"Water Cooler Effect" of collabator productivity

Screen shot 2011-04-23 at 2.16.35 PM

Screen shot 2011-04-23 at 2.16.35 PM

Number of scientific paper citations [height] overlaid on the streetplan of the Harvard Medical School campus.  Color [gray to blue] indicates number of papers in which the first and last authors were in the same building .

Data collection: "Gathering data was much harder than Lee expected.  A team of 15 undergraduates used floor plans, staff directories, and their feet to track down the specific office and laboratory addresses of the 7,300 Harvard authors across several Harvard campuses and Massachussetts General Hospital, as well as addresses for the non-Harvard scientists included in the study."

Did the undergraduates get authorship?   Noooooo......


Unfortuately the link to the interactive map is broken.  Paper located here

Building as Narrative

Blake Carrington gives a building a new narrative based on its structural composition with his "Cathedral Scan" project.

"Cathedral Scan" translates the architectural plans of Gothic cathedrals into open-ended musical scores via custom software. Treating the plans as a kind of map, in the live performance Carrington navigates through them to create diverse rhythms, drones and textures."