From an early age, we are trained to attach meaning to symbols, and the use of symbols on maps is one of the first things novice map readers identify as a key component of maps. All symbols are an abstraction of reality, but can range from highly realistic to highly abstract, while others are essentially an extension of the alphabet. Some symbols are universally recognizable to large groups, others to only a few people. The whole map is essentially a symbol, and at the same time, an assemblage of symbols.
In this chapter, we will cover the following topics:
- Representing features with graphics
- Classifying data
- Making symbols dynamic