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#1 2006-02-28 20:50:06

alexandra
Member
From: Cologne, Germany
Registered: 2004-04-02
Posts: 1,370

[contrib] Project: TXP Subway Map

Hi all,
i agree with neutrino that Anark had a great idea: a Subway map. The map is ment to visualize all the different TXP pages/projects.

Anark elaborates on his idea here.

I guess, it does not necessarily have to be structured as he suggests – may be similar?

Anybody around who likes to pick up the idea and transform it into a little project :)?

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#2 2006-02-28 21:09:14

hakjoon
Moderator
From: Arlington, VA
Registered: 2004-07-29
Posts: 1,634
Website

Re: [contrib] Project: TXP Subway Map

I had a really hard time visualizing what Anark suggested. Any examples of something similar out there?

I thought Neutrino’s TOC (Draft 1, Draft 2) was an interesting starting point.

Last edited by hakjoon (2006-02-28 23:09:25)


Shoving is the answer – pusher robot

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#3 2006-02-28 23:04:20

nardo
Member
From: tuvalahiti
Registered: 2004-04-22
Posts: 741

Re: [contrib] Project: TXP Subway Map

I also thought anark’s idea a good one – especially from the design view (city/subway/station) – someone could have a lot of fun with those illustrations : )

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#4 2006-02-28 23:35:10

neutrino
Member
From: East of the Diablo Range
Registered: 2005-06-16
Posts: 134
Website

Re: [contrib] Project: TXP Subway Map

Yeah I loved the visual of the map—the London subway was the first one that popped into my head and then, because of where I am, BART. I stuck some links to subway maps somewhere around here. I’ll go find them. Count me in on this. I’m happy to flesh out the TOC Map more fully — I planned to do that anyway. Maybe Anark has some more ideas about transforming a visual like a map into an interface. I wonder if it’s a large monitor project. Textland is pretty big. It could be designed like TxgMag’s site page — scrolling right and down.

the links to the maps are in this post

Edit: There is also a link to the revised TOC in that post. This version is run by a Java applet (which I think is a pain — I haven’t learned to fully appreciate Java) which is clickable and collapsable. Freemind is a very useful (and easy to use) program.

Last edited by neutrino (2006-03-01 20:19:33)

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#5 2006-03-01 04:17:55

Anark
Member
Registered: 2004-08-14
Posts: 101

Re: [contrib] Project: TXP Subway Map

> hakjoon wrote:

> I had a really hard time visualizing what Anark suggested. Any examples of something similar out there?

I can’t think of examples that do anything similar, but it’s a fairly simple idea, so let me try to explain it again.

You’re familiar with maps on the Web: they generally let you zoom in and out: from continent-level to street level and back. The “tiers” I suggested are essentially zoom levels: The top-most tier is the zoom level where you see all Textpattern-related projects at a single glance, the bottom-most tier is the zoom level at which you see the individual person. The tier in between is the zoom level at which you see the individual projects.

Then let’s extend the map metaphor a bit and say that TextPattern is a country (top-most tier, zoomed all the way out) that the projects are cities (middle tier, zoomed midway in) with subway systems where project contributors are shown as stations. Then you click on the station and get through to the individual person (bottom-most tier, zoomed all the way in). If a project has different parts, say, for instance, a backend group and an interface group, they’d be rendered as different subway lines: John, Jane and Jake will be stations on the Backend Line; Sally, Steve and Sophie will be stations on the Interface Line, etc.

Or look at it this way: at the bottom-most zoom level it’s a Who’s Who in TxP wiki, and the two zoom levels of the map that overlay it are just a fanciful interface to that wiki.

At the midway zoom level, it’s a detailed description of the individual projects, and the topmost zoom level is just a fanciful interface that shows how these projects are related to all the other projects.

The tiers, like the zoom levels in an online map, are a convenient way of hiding detail where detail isn’t required, and that is what makes the tiered map a better interface than Neutrino’s mindmap, which looks a bit cluttered. With a tiered map it’d be easy to get an overall view and you could zoom into whatever project you want to find out about, and from there you could zoom in to the project’s contributors.

The bottom-most tier, the Who’s Who in TxP wiki could be dropped and in its place there could be simple links to the TxP Board’s user profiles.

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#6 2006-03-01 04:51:14

hakjoon
Moderator
From: Arlington, VA
Registered: 2004-07-29
Posts: 1,634
Website

Re: [contrib] Project: TXP Subway Map

Ok I get it now. That would be pretty awesome.


Shoving is the answer – pusher robot

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#7 2006-03-01 14:05:09

Destry
Moderator
From: Haut-Rhin
Registered: 2004-08-04
Posts: 4,296
Website

Re: [contrib] Project: TXP Subway Map

Fun idea. I would be careful about making it overly interactive, or you begin adding a lot of usability issues. I’m pretty sure we don’t just want a cool toy to play with, but something actually useful for getting people to content quickly.

One idea with respect to the subway idea. Maybe the top-tier items could be represented as colored train lines (keeping with the theme), like in an exaggerated legend or something. That’s all the user sees at first; keeping the overhead low and simple. For example:

Line 1 — Documentation
Line 2 — Development
Line 3 — Design (e.g., TextGarden)
Line 4 — Community (e.g. TxPMag)
etc.

When a train line is clicked, the representative branch expands to the next tier, but only as far as the next level, where the user would again make a direction choice and click accordingly, and likewise where the branch continues to expand to the third tier, and so forth.

I like the lateral branching in neutrinos thought maps; something like that could work great for this idea, and the branching lines could easily represent the train lines and be colored accordingly.

(By the way, neutrino, what did you use to make that branch schematic? It looks pretty automated, and if so, I could really use something like that.)

One thing we don’t want to do is build something that is hard coded into graphics (e.g., image maps or Flash). The information changes way too quickly for that to be remotely practical. Whatever we do, the train lines (map) need to be easily, dynamically updated when the architecture is modified (and you can bet there will be a need for that). AJAX maybe?

Great ideas though, Anark/neutrino. Very innovating. Our mantra should be “simplicity” through it all. The fancy aesthetics should only be the icing on the cake, not the main objective. You know, usability and all.

Last edited by Destry (2006-03-01 14:08:11)


Wordworkin’ for you.

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#8 2006-03-01 20:22:55

neutrino
Member
From: East of the Diablo Range
Registered: 2005-06-16
Posts: 134
Website

Re: [contrib] Project: TXP Subway Map

@Destry

Freemind

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#9 2006-03-01 20:49:59

alexandra
Member
From: Cologne, Germany
Registered: 2004-04-02
Posts: 1,370

Re: [contrib] Project: TXP Subway Map

Get inspired: Tup Map variations :)

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#10 2006-03-01 22:45:43

nardo
Member
From: tuvalahiti
Registered: 2004-04-22
Posts: 741

Re: [contrib] Project: TXP Subway Map

the benefit of cities/suburbs etc (as opposed to just flat subway maps) is that importance/activity/relationship is represented graphically

some guy did a web stats program using a sim-city approach, right?

thanks google

being txp, we may eschew the big city gloss for lime-washed walls, corner shops owned by certified eccentrics, 27 local bars & home distilleries within 15 mins walk, bicycles, hand-painted signs, sky & horizons, dunes and sea, animalia

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