Mosaic drawings and cartograms

R.G. Cano, K.A. Buchin, T.H.A. Castermans, A. Pieterse, W.M. Sonke, B. Speckmann

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Cartograms visualize quantitative data about a set of regions such as countries or states. There are several different types of cartograms and – for some – algorithms to automatically construct them exist. We focus on mosaic cartograms: cartograms that use multiples of simple tiles – usually squares or hexagons – to represent regions. Mosaic cartograms communicate well data that consist of, or can be cast into, small integer units (for example, electorial college votes). In addition, they allow users to accurately compare regions and can often maintain a (schematized) version of the input regions’ shapes. We propose the first fully automated method to construct mosaic cartograms. To do so, we first introduce mosaic drawings of triangulated planar graphs. We then show how to modify mosaic drawings into mosaic cartograms with low cartographic error while maintaining correct adjacencies between regions. We validate our approach experimentally and compare to other cartogram methods.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages4
Publication statusPublished - 17 Mar 2015
Event31st European Workshop on Computational Geometry (EuroCG 2015) - Univerza v Ljubljani, Ljubljana, Slovenia
Duration: 15 Mar 201518 Mar 2015
Conference number: 31


Workshop31st European Workshop on Computational Geometry (EuroCG 2015)
Abbreviated titleEuroCG 2015
Internet address


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