John Nelson

John Nelson
I have way too much fun looking for ways to understand and present data visually, hopefully driving product strategy and engaging users. I work in the Content team at esri, pushing and pulling data in all sorts of absurd ways -and then talking about it. I also get to spend time with the Story Maps team, working on fun and useful user experiences. When I'm not doing those things, I'm chasing around toddlers and wrangling chickens, and generally getting into other ad-hoc adventures. Life is good.

Recent Posts

Hand to Digital

WatercolorInProGetReadyToLive

In a previous post, I walked through the creation of a hand drawn map. In the process I picked up some insights on what it was about the tangible graphite, ink, paint, and paper map that I appreciated. I had … Continue reading

Posted in ArcGIS Pro, Cartographic Design, Mapping, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | 2 Comments

Digital to Hand

DigitalToHand

For my father’s birthday this year, I decided to make him a…gasp…hand drawn map. I’d broken the seal on hand-drawing maps back at Christmas, when I made my sisters maps of their hometowns (Cheryl’s map, Carol’s map). What an exhilarating, … Continue reading

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Firefly Recipes

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The glowtastic Firefly symbols in ArcGIS Online are lots of fun (I mean a practical and pragmatic spatial visualization mechanism for the foundational concept of geographic dependence, i.e. the proximally-diminishing influence a feature has on its surroundings). By the way, … Continue reading

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My Favorite Hacks of 2017

HexAggregation

“Hack”, “how-to”, whatever the handle, to me it means putting some maybe-unexpected pieces together in a somewhat-unexpected way to create something with interest. You know, ideally. Luminance Hack Ah, it’s so simple. So simple. Just use symbol layers in Pro … Continue reading

Posted in Analysis & Geoprocessing, ArcGIS Online, ArcGIS Pro, Cartographic Design, Geodata, Imagery, Living Atlas, Mapping, The ArcGIS Book, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , | Leave a comment

College Football Recruitment Maps

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Did you hear about this thing that colleges have football teams now? And at the end of the year some committee decides on the four best, and they play each other? We have to support this or it might not … Continue reading

Posted in Analysis & Geoprocessing, ArcGIS Pro, Cartographic Design, Geodata, Location Analytics, Mapping, Spatial Statistics, Story Maps, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , | 4 Comments

Boundary Dropshadow Mega-Hack

BorderShadowMegaHack

I find that vector items floating above a complex basemap can sometimes be hard to see. An imagery basemap will have light patches and dark patches. So what’s a vector to do? Let’s see… Here is a layer of US … Continue reading

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Absurd Paper Maps in Pro

GreatLakesPaperCutThumbnail

Sometimes I find myself trolling Etsy for gift ideas, and I inevitably end up seeing hosts of amazing minimalist stacked paper-cut maps. Just lovely. If you don’t know what I’m talking about, then feast your eyes. Naturally, being the human … Continue reading

Posted in ArcGIS Pro, Cartographic Design, Hydro, Mapping, Oceans & Maritime | Tagged , , , , | 13 Comments

What’s New in ArcGIS Online? Firefly!

FireflySymbols_inAGO

Yes! Those curious glowing symbols that we just can’t look away from are now available right out of the box in ArcGIS Online…starting now. Now all that Firefly goodness is at your fantastic GIS-slinging cartographically-inclined fingertips. Go forth. How? Any … Continue reading

Posted in ArcGIS Online, Cartographic Design, Living Atlas, Mapping, Uncategorized, Web | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Water Lines…They need some space

WaterLinesRule

It’s not you, it’s them. They just need a little bit of space right now. In fact, the more space they get the more space they need. What First, let’s appreciate the magnificence of some outstanding examples from our forebearers. … Continue reading

Posted in Analysis & Geoprocessing, ArcGIS Pro, Cartographic Design, Mapping, Oceans & Maritime, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 9 Comments

Mega-Easy Coastal Stipple Effect

MegaEasyStippledCoastlines

Ah the days of old, our field bursting with artists plying their craft, creating maps of breathtaking imagination and technique. Just window shop here for a moment to fall into the eye-watering depths of cartographic charm. One of my favorite … Continue reading

Posted in ArcGIS Pro, Cartographic Design, Mapping, Oceans & Maritime, Uncategorized | Tagged , , , , , | 8 Comments