Cartoblography: Experiments in Using and Organising the Spatial Context of Micro-blogging

Transactions in GIS, Volume 14 Issue s1, Pages 5 – 23

Kenneth Field and James O’Brien

“Blogs, micro-blogs and online forums underpin a more interconnected world. People communicate ever more and are increasingly keen to explain and illustrate their lives; showing where they are and what they are doing. Desktop, online and mobile mapping landscapes have never been as rich or diverse yet this challenges cartography to adapt and remain relevant in the modern mapping world. We explore the spatial expression and potential value of micro-blogging and Twitter as a social networking tool. Examples of “twitter maps” are reviewed that leverage the Twitter API and online map services to locate some component of the “tweet”. Scope, function and design are illustrated through development of two proof-of-concept map mashups that support collaborative real-time mapping and the organisation and display of information for mass user events. Through the experiments in using and organising data in this way we demonstrate the value of “cartoblography”– a framework for mapping the spatial context of micro-blogging.”

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