Mapping styles for situated screens

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    Testing out mapping styles on limited set of content—which one would you prefer?

    The light version is based on existing Helsinki maps (, with less information and slightly more contrasted colours.

    The dark one is an attempt to design a negative version of the first, while maintaining lightness and "Helsinkiness".

    The physical hardware will be a black "monolith", and the screen LCD for now. Which means the white one is quite bright, and the dark one blends to the hw quite well.

    tobybarnes, bashford, antimega, and 11 other people added this photo to their favorites.

    1. antimega 46 months ago | reply

      If it about being situated, I'd have to see it on a real screen in a real place ;) I'd probably say light during the day and dark during the night.

    2. Mikko Waris 46 months ago | reply

      Light in the daytime and dark in the nighttime?
      - Oops, you were 40 seconds faster than me :)

    3. Sami Niemelä 46 months ago | reply

      That's what we initially thought too— however, when being tested on a 47" lcd /a glowing rectangle, the dark one feels way more friendly and subtle. And blends w/ the black hardware quite nicely.

    4. bashford 46 months ago | reply

      What Chris said. Light screens at night might draw too much focus from passers by. Unless of course you want the screens to act as lighting.

      My main comment would be that the areas of green and water are adding lots of visual complexity to the map. Maybe try dropping their contrast so the routes and 5 minute walk ring stand out a bit more.

    5. Sami Niemelä 46 months ago | reply

      Hmm, good points. Although I'd argue the water and areas of green are quite important for orientation in a city like Helsinki, and less important in say, London.

    6. Sami Niemelä 46 months ago | reply

      oh and this will be 57" btw. So quite large, the smallest actionable items are now about an inch.

    7. tobybarnes 46 months ago | reply

      I don't have a problem with the water - water is location finder. more so than roads.

      I would try variants of grey, if you have the spectrum - darker grey at night as near to black
      lighter grey in the day, even as far as titanium ish.
      adding colour will make it warmer less clinical.

      and what Ben said about lighting - see iphone screen as torch etc

    8. Sami Niemelä 46 months ago | reply

      It's a battle between more subway-map style infographic, and a *map* with more visual information. Will be quite interesting once we got streetnames on :)

    9. perttumurto 46 months ago | reply

      Light one. I think it's easier to eyes in long run

    10. adamgreenfield 46 months ago | reply

      Talk to Mike Migurski at Stamen about algorithms for street-name placement, BTW.

    11. Sami Niemelä 46 months ago | reply

      Good idea. Will do that once we get there.

    12. Mikko Hämäläinen 46 months ago | reply

      They both look really nice. When possible test the dark one in direct sunlight to see if you get lots of glare that makes details harder to see.

      With Shadow Cities we're still constantly tweaking ui element contrasts because harsh sunlight can turn the screen to almost a mirror like surface when your background is very dark. Not sure if it as big of a problem with these bigger screens.

    13. Sami Niemelä 46 months ago | reply

      From mockups I'd say the large light screen will be quite harsh, even in bright daylight. Studying continues— we're now fiddling with different kind of patterns for the parks.

    14. natasayu 46 months ago | reply

      Beautiful Shot!

    15. 46 months ago | reply

      Congrats on explore! Well done.

      Have a nice day..

      [my flickriver stream]

      commented with FlickrComment

    16. Sprengben [why not get a friend] 46 months ago | reply

      Woow, an awesome Photo. I am new to the Optical Group.
      Come over to my latest group Photo and enjoy it if you like!

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