Evaluating the Usabilty of Cartographic Animations with Eyemovement Analysis

Proceedings of the 25th International Cartographic Conference, Paris, France, 03–08 July 2011

T. Opach and A. Nossum

“Availability of time-series spatial data and wide access to computer tools has resulted in broad use of cartographic animations. A growing amount of animated maps poses new challenges, in which the efficiency of cartographic communication is of concern (Opach 2005).

“There are various methods for studying usability of maps in general. The methods range from traditional surveys (Suchan and Brewer 2000) to unobtrusive data gathering such as eye-tracking. In recent years the use of eye-tracking in cartography has increased (Fabrikant et al. 2008, Çöltekin et al. 2009, Brodersen et al. 2001, Fabrikant et al. 2010, Li et al. 2010). Availability as well as development of both eye-tracking software and hardware is believed to be the major reason for this.

Examples of: (A) areas of interest, (B) gaze plot and (C) heat map.

Examples of: (A) areas of interest, (B) gaze plot and (C) heat map.

“Eye-tracking provides the ability to record eye movements in unobtrusive manner relying on specialized equipment. Earlier studies using eye-tracking have primarily treated the stimuli as static representations. Although, several studies have also focused on exploring new approaches or analysis methods for eyetracking data to accommodate better cartographic stimuli and qualities associated with this (Garlandini and Fabrikant 2009, Çöltekin et al. 2010).

“Despite the increased focus on eye-tracking, the question remains unanswered on how eye-tracking is suitable as an evaluation method with cartographic animations as stimulus. In this paper we explore the suitability of eye-tracking on two different cartographic animations in an attempt to answer this question.

“We have conducted two eye-tracking experiments with 10 participants each for both an isolated cartographic animation (semistatic animations) and a complex animated map (the Kampinos Forest animation). We have used standard analysis tools to assess and gain experience on their strengths and weaknesses when cartographic animations are used as stimuli. The experience gathered in this process is described throughout this article as well as our suggestions for improvements.”

A Spatial Analysis of Variations in Health Access: Linking Geography, Socio-economic Status and Access Perceptions

International Journal of Health GeographicsInternational Journal of Health Geographics, 10:44, Published 25 July 2011

Alexis J Comber, Chris Brunsdon and Robert Radburn

“Background: This paper analyses the relationship between public perceptions of access to general practitioners (GPs) surgeries and hospitals against health status, car ownership and geographic distance. In so doing it explores the different dimensions associated with facility access and accessibility.

The study area, Leicestershire UK, and the locations of the attitude survey  respondent postcodes, GP surgeries, hospitals and hospitals with Emergency  Departments (ED).

The study area, Leicestershire UK, and the locations of the attitude survey respondent postcodes, GP surgeries, hospitals and hospitals with Emergency Departments (ED).

“Methods: Data on difficulties experienced in accessing health services, respondent health status and car ownership were collected through an attitudes survey. Road distances to the nearest service were calculated for each respondent using a GIS. Difficulty was related to geographic distance, health status and car ownership using logistic generalized linear models. A Geographically Weighted Regression (GWR) was used to explore the spatial non-stationarity in the results.

“Results: Respondent long term illness, reported bad health and non-car ownership were found to be significant predictors of difficulty in accessing GPs and hospitals. Geographic distance was not a significant predictor of difficulty in accessing hospitals but was for GPs. GWR identified the spatial (local) variation in these global relationships indicating locations where the predictive strength of the independent variables was higher or lower than the global trend. The impacts of bad health and non-car ownership on the difficulties experienced in accessing health services varied spatially across the study area, whilst the impacts of geographic distance did not.

Spatial variation in the relationships between perceived difficulty in access  to hospitals and GPs with Bad Health and Non-Car Ownership.

Spatial variation in the relationships between perceived difficulty in access to hospitals and GPs with Bad Health and Non-Car Ownership.

“Conclusions: Difficulty in accessing different health facilities was found to be significantly related to health status and car ownership, whilst the impact of geographic distance depends on the service in question. GWR showed how these relationships were varied across the study area. This study demonstrates that the notion of access is a multi-dimensional concept, whose composition varies with location, according to the facility being considered and the health and socio-economic status of the individual concerned.”