Mapping has become a big thing in our everyday lives. This goes hand in hand with stepped up efforts to collect but also release data. It has become a data war with big web players such as Google, but also traditional produces such as OS or the sensus data.
The bottleneck currently is more the traditional software tools to actually work with the data and produce meaningful output.
So it is great to get news about a new effort to open this up and make it more accessible and intuitive. Here we go INDIEMAPPER!
It is an online flash based mapping tool developed over the past two years by Axis Maps.
Image taken from Indiemapper / A map of Hurricane Gustav showing its path and wind speed, 25 August to 2 September 2008. The reference map data, including bathymetry, is from Natural Earth. The hurricane data is from Geocommons Finder.
It offers all you you can think of: Unlimited online storage, Secure data handling and storage, No software to install, Mac, PC or Linux ,Constant secure backups, Built-in collaboration tools, Premium customer support. A mapping tool to go really, work from were ever you have access, don't worry about the data. All for $30 a month, you can get a 30 day free trial to test it. For academic use there is a reduced pricing.
Indiemapper also integrates with independent cartographic tools on the web like ColorBrewer, TypeBrewer and Natural Earth.
"Indiemapper is a Web-based app that loads geo-data, allows custom control over mapmaking, and exports static maps in vector and raster formats.
We've balanced indiemapper so you have the tools you need to make beautiful thematic maps without overwhelming you with hundreds of obscure GIS functions. Nothing is more than 2 clicks away. This keeps mapmaking simple, fast, and fun." (Indimapper)
Find a detailed introduction on the Cartogrammer Blog or of course infos directly on the Indimapper page, this also features a blog with updates, also see the review on FlowingData.