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The World Wide Web has rapidly become a widespread means for the publication of geospatial data. It has earned this popularity since it is virtually platform independent can reach many users at minimal cost and is easy to update. More importantly, the web meets the increasing demand for customized geospatial data products. However, the visual dissemination of spatial data on the web creates special requirements for map design, and introduces new capabilities and pitfalls for interactive map applications. Web maps are first put into a broad context and specific characteristics of these maps are then examined from a user perspective. The various functions of maps on the Web are discussed in the context of the technical background and fundamental user questions such as what can be done with existing data. Web cartography also provides insight into the particularities of multi-dimensional web maps. Typical characteristics are explained clearly from the perspectives of static viewing and dynamic viewing. For each category, design considerations, based on cartographic principles, are discussed. Topics addressed include map contents, map physics and the map environment. Technical terms are explained where necessary. For several time-sensitive topics such as traffic, weather and tourism, the status and future of web maps are discussed. Atlases and national mapping agencies are also covered. The website http:://kartoweb.itc.nl/webcartography/webbook accompanies the book. It provides a dynamic environment for demonstrating many of the principles set out in the text and includes access to a basic course on Web cartography. The book and website provide a text for students and professionals in the fields of cartography and GIS. The series of chapters are written by different people but worked together into a single text.
Published: 21st September 2000