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Automates making hipster square cartograph maps.
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README.md

Squared

Automates making hipster square cartograph maps.

##How it works It's really easy. Promise.

###Include the library Install with Bower:

bower install squared

Put squared.js in the <head> of your HTML file.

<script src="/bower_components/squared/dist/squared.js"></script>

###Include any custom styles By default , every Squared.js geography is given the class squared-geog. You can apply custom classes to cartographic elements, so make sure you have the styles to back them up.

<style type="text/css">
  .squared-geog {
    background-color: #9F8EC3;
  }

  squared-geog.commonwealth {
    background-color: #FDC26D;
  }
</style>

Set a container

It needs to have a unique id and a width/height, though they can be percentages.

<div id="map" style="width: 600px; height: 400px"></div>

Make a new Squared object

It accepts the container's id as an argument. You'll need this Javascript to run after the DOM loads, so wrap in a <script> tag after the closing <body> tag or make sure it's called after an onload or $(document).ready() event in an external file.

  var map = new Squared("map");

Make the base map

The make() function takes (optional) options and an (optional) template (more on the below).

map.make(data, 
  { 
    "background-color": "#9F8EC3",
    color: white,
    "font-size": "11pt"  
  }
);

Add data

Bind data to geographies with Squared.data(array, key), which accepts an array of data objects and an optional key value. If given, key should match a unique id in your template's geographies; it defaults to "name".

Example:

data = [
  {
    "name":"AL",
    "full_name":"Alabama",
    "2014_population": 4849377
  },
  {
    "name":"AK",
    "full_name":"Alaska",
    "2014_population": 736732
  }
  ...
  {
    "name":"WY",
    "full_name":"Wyoming",
    "2014_population": 584153
  }
];

map.data(data, "name");

Figure out what you want to highlight

Two ways to do this.

  1. Apply a CSS class using Squared.addClass().

    Example:

     map.addClass(function(d){
       if(d.2014_population < 1000000)
         return "small";
        else if(d.2014_population < 10000000 )
          return "medium";
        else return "large";
     });
    

    Squared.removeClass(classifier) works the same way, but removes the selected class.

  2. Apply a choropleth color scale! You can do this with Squared.makeColorScale().

    Example:

     map.makeColorScale('2014_population', {
       minColor: "#63998F",
       maxColor: "#EA463D",
       steps: 3
     });
    

Boom, map!

Full HTML:

<!doctype html>
<html>
<head>
  <script src="bower_components/squared/squared.js"></script>
  <script src="https://ajax.googleapis.com/ajax/libs/jquery/2.1.3/jquery.min.js"></script>
  <style type="text/css">
    .squared-geog {
      background-color: #FDC26D
    }
    .squared-geog.small {
      background-color: red;
    }
    .squared-geog.medium {
      background-color: green;
    }
    .squared-geog.large {
      background-color: blue;
    }
  </style>    
</head>
<body>
  <div id="map" style="width: 600px; height: 400px"></div>  
</body>

<script>
  map = new Squared("map");
  map.make();

  $.get("data.json", function(data){
    map.data(data);
    map.addClass(function(d){
      if(d.population_2014 < 1000000)
        return "small";
       else if(d.population_2014 < 10000000 )
         return "medium";
       else return "large";
    });
  });
</script>
</html>

##Options The options object takes a bunch of parameters:

  • padding: The distance between squares, as a percentage of the width of the square. Default is 0.1.
  • template: Object or string holding map template data.

Making your own template

What good is a hipster cartogram tool if you can't make your own custom hipster cartograms?

The options object in Squared.make() accepts template, which is an array of geography objects listing a name and x,y coordinates.

Alternatively, you can feed it a comma-delinated string, with each row terminated by a \n, listing a grid of the same values.

Easiest way to explain is to show it. This:

[
  {"name":"N","x":1,"y":0},
  {"name":"E","x":2,"y":1},
  {"name":"S","x":1,"y":2}
  {"name":"W","x":0,"y":1}
]

or this:

",N,\n" + 
"W,,E\n" +
",S,\n"

...will produce this:

More complicated? This:

"Iceland,,,,,,,,,\n" +
",,,,Norway,Sweden,Finland,,,\n" +
"Ireland,UK,,,,,Estonia,Russia,,\n" +
",,Belgium,Netherlands,Denmark,,Lithuania,Latvia,,\n" +
",,France,Germany,Poland,Belarus,Ukraine,Moldova,,\n" +
",Portugal,Spain,Switzerland,Austria,Slovakia,Romania,Bulgaria,,\n" +
",,,Italy,Slovenia,Hungary,Serbia,,,\n" +
",,,,Croatia,Bosnia,Macedonia,Turkey,,\n" +
",,,,,Albania,Greece,Cyprus,,\n"

...makes this:

I find it easiest to make these grids in Excel and save as a CSV.

History

It all began with a map from The New York Times: It wasn't the first time a designer had sought to minimize visual bias by squishing states into squares, but it launched plenty of imitations.

Reference

Squared.make([options ])

Makes a new Squared object.

Parameters

  • options: object
    • padding (float): The distance between squares, as a percentage of the width of the square. Default is 0.1.
    • key (string): The property containing a unique id for every template geography. Defaults to "name".
    • responsive (boolean): Whether the map should resize if the bounds of its containing element change. Useful if the containing element has a percentage width.
    • template (object or string): Either an array holding a collection of geography objects, or a comma-delineated string with rows broken by newlines. See above for example.

Properties

  • geographies (array): An array of DOM elements contained in the map.

Squared.data(data[, key])

Bind data to a Squared map.

  • data (array): An array of objects, preferably one per geography in the template. They are bound based on the shared id listed in key, so make sure both the template and the data have this same id for every object.
  • key (string): The shared property between the data you're binding and the map template. Defaults to "name".

Squared.addClass(classifier)

Add a class to map elements, either selectively through a function or en masse via a string.

  • classifier (function or string): This is usually a function: It's repeated for every element in the map and is passed that element's data object as an argument, returning a class name. If it's a string, each element in the map receives it as a class.

Squared.removeClass(classifier)

Removes a class from elements, either selectively through a function or en masse via a string.

  • classifier (function or string): This is usually a function: It's repeated for every element in the map and is passed that element's data object as an argument, returning a class name. If it's a string, each element in the map with the class name loses that class.

Squared.makeColorScale(property[, options])

Applies a color scale to the map based on the values in property.

  • property (string): The data property with which the scale will be based.
  • options (object):
    • min (number): The minimum value in the color scale. Defaults to the lowest overall value. Must be paired with max, though both are optional.
    • max (number): The maximum value in the color scale. Defaults to the highest overall value. Must be paired with min, though both are optional.
    • minColor (string): The starting color for lowest values.
    • maxColor (string): The ending color for highest values.
    • steps (number): The number of colors to display. Defaults to 5.
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