Project R-5209


MapFlux: Bridging the Gap Between Paper-based Maps and Their Digital Counterparts


Recent controversies surrounding mobile maps have highlighted the importance of cartography to human-computer interaction and information visualization on mobile devices. However, despite the prominent role of so-called "map apps", they have not yet been robustly examined with a lens informed by the decades of relevant research in the field of cartography. Moreover, principles and best practices established in cartography have largely not been integrated with the work of computer science researchers and practitioners. In the MapFlux project, we first identify the predominant cartographic problems in popular map applications for mobile devices. Drawing on the well-established literature of academic cartography and research in mobile HCI as well as augmented paper solutions, we will then identify, implement, and evaluate potential solutions trying to bridge the gap between current paper-based maps and their digital counterparts. We currently have a window of opportunity for leveraging the benefits of traditional cartography to help make the world's geographic information more accessible and useful on digital devices. The core output will be the investigation of fundamental interaction principles for interaction with spatial information. Rather than simply replacing any paper-based map interaction with digital map applications, we aim for a symbiosis between the affordances of the paper & digital world by designing the next generation of hybrid paper-digital map user interfaces.

Period of project

01 January 2014 - 31 December 2017