Say hello to all-new

Datawrapper Maps.

Introducing a new, very easy workflow to create maps for all countries in the world.

Today we are adding an entirely new map module to Datawrapper. There a quite a few new and notable features in this update: Datawrapper now provides a workflow to create a choropleth maps in minutes. The new module now has many more maps than the beta version: 252 map shapes of the world, continents and all countries of the world.

The new maps display well on large and small screens and render amazingly fast in your browser. They have a zoom and even support additional tooltips to contextualize the information shown to the user.

Overview

Let us walk you through the new map module quickly. No worries,  while there quite a few features to cover, you are just five minutes away from having created your first new map with the new map module. Before skipping the manual, let us provide a very quick overview of all the features that are coming your way with the new Datawrapper maps:

New workflow: Start with the map, then add the data

252 maps for this release, more to come

Worldmap, continents, all countries of the world with states/regions

• Zoomable maps down to county level, for US & German counties, more to follow

New workflow

We add a new workflow, specifically for maps. The old set-up firstly asked for data, then for the visualization type. Now, we separate the map creation process from the chart creation process. In the future you choose either Create new chart or Create new map in step one of Datawrapper.

(1) Select: Create map

Next in the map process is that Datawrapper lets you choose the map you want, with a very easy to use selector. 

The Datawrapper map library now offers 252 maps (up from 30 in the beta version): World map, continents, all countries of the world, some already down to a county or district level. The source data for this come are public domain via Natural Earth.

We will be adding maps with higher level detail for countries continuously. If one is needed right away sent us a note to support@datawrapper.de and we try to add those ASAP.

(2) Add data to your map

You can now add data manually, the map will update after each entry, which shows how much quicker the new module renders the visualization. Adding data manually will always work, though this approach will be efficient for maps with very few data points or to correct a mistake.

(3) Uploading data simplified

The more common and much quicker way is to upload data from a spreadsheet, via copy & paste or by using the fileformat .csv (for "comma separated values").

When you select a file from your computer, Datawrapper will look out for the column where your location data is. We support the most common types of geolocation here: ISO, FIPS (now GEC), HASC and AGS (Germany). If you want to look up the appropriate codes for your country to add to the states or counties in your region, here is a good reference page: Geonames

(4) Finding missing country names or or location codes simplified

There a number of countries and country codes which often create a bit of more work. What is the correct name or code for countries which are written in different ways: Is it Congo, Republic of Congo? Is it Cote d'Ivoire or Ivory Coast? Datawrapper will show you missing data points which you can add manually to ensure that all data is properly attributed to countries or regions.

(5) Adding tooltips with placeholders

You can show the specific value of a region when your readers hover over the map. Tooltips can contain additional information using placeholders. 

See this sample tooltip (in step "Refine). The blue boxes on the right are data columns present in the dataset. Values from these columns can be displayed using Javascript formulas (we add a tutorial on that in a few days). 

This adds a deeper level of insight to these interactive maps.

(6) Zoom

The new Datawrapper maps have zoom features. You will notice that the zoom even works when editing the map. The good thing is that even if your viewers/users try that they will not loose the focus and suddenly loose the map view. These maps are not tile-based, so the common problem of suddenly looking at Iceland unintentionally simply does not occur.

(7) Fully responsive

Yes, all Datawrapper maps are responsive and suitable for smart phone screens. Datawrapper is used heavily in newsrooms around the world and the mobile views on most news portals are growing strongly. 

In the coming days we will add specific, short tutorials on how to prepare your data, where to find data for maps and how to use Javascript formulas to create tooltips in a bit more depth.

But, now, back to the promise from the start of this post: After reading this for a few minutes, you can now create your first new Datawrapper map. Below is a sample map of the population in Mexico - to show what is now possible with Datawrapper Maps 1.0. Have fun trying the new features.


Send us feedback

If you like this new module, please let us know - either via support@datawrapper.de or via @datawrapper on Twitter

If you don't like a particular step or element of the process, do the same - we want to hear back from you about issues. Getting to this point took quite a bit of work - so what we hope is that the feedback will be by and large positive. This is a big step for Datawrapper, we hope you agree. 


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