New from Tilegrams: make a hex map with France and Germany borders

Simon Rogers
Mar 10, 2017 · 3 min read

Last year we launched Tilegrams with Pitch Interactive to make the process of creating a hexagon map or other cartogram easier. Now we have a new version: as of today, Tilegrams supports regional boundaries in France and Germany.

Both countries will see elections this year (you can find Google Trends data on the France elections, which will take place first). But it could apply to any dataset.

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The idea behind Tilegrams was to make the production of a cartogram open to everyone. When we launched it last year, I wrote:

This year, we will launch a number of tools to support data journalism. This particular tool is designed for serious developers and amateurs (like me) who want to make their own hexmaps. It’s published on github so anyone can take the code and re-use it. It allows you to make both static and interactive maps.

Since then, Al Jazeera used it for their US election results map (and wrote a Medium post about it here).

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How does it work? It’s pretty straightforward:

Step 1: Choose a pre-loaded map

The tool comes pre-loaded with a number of key hexmaps to get you started.

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Step 2: choose your data

If the pre-loaded maps aren’t what you need, then choose a dataset and see it visualised by clicking ‘Generate cartogram from Dataset’. You can also upload and paste in your own dataset in CSV format.

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Step 3: edit the data

The ‘resolution’ slider changes what each hexagon represents. And if you don’t like the way the map looks, you can drag the hexagons around to create your own map style.

Step 4: export the visual

There are two download options: svg to produce a static image that can be edited afterwards; and TopoJSON for the interactive version.

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You can read more about how to use it in this blogpost from the Pitch team.

Go straight to Tilegrams.

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We work with journalists and entrepreneurs to build the…

Simon Rogers

Written by

Data journalist, and Data Editor at Google. Launch editor of Guardian Datablog. Author, Facts are Sacred http://t.co/bL5erqoI7z. All views my own

Google News Lab

We work with journalists and entrepreneurs to build the future of media with Google. The News Lab is Google's effort to empower innovation at the intersection of media and technology

Simon Rogers

Written by

Data journalist, and Data Editor at Google. Launch editor of Guardian Datablog. Author, Facts are Sacred http://t.co/bL5erqoI7z. All views my own

Google News Lab

We work with journalists and entrepreneurs to build the future of media with Google. The News Lab is Google's effort to empower innovation at the intersection of media and technology

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