Join 3,500 readers in helping fund MetaFilter (Hide)


One map's journey
October 14, 2010 2:02 PM   Subscribe

The KICKMap has come up previously on MeFi (1, 2, 3). In this article, designer Eddie Jabbour elaborates his approach and offers a detailed comparison with current and past NYC Subway map designs.
posted by Casimir (8 comments total) 4 users marked this as a favorite

 
Protip: If you want me to use your map instead of the free one, yours should be free, too.
posted by reductiondesign at 2:08 PM on October 14, 2010 [1 favorite]


i love the kickmap. i even emailed eddie once to tell him so, and to express my disappointment that i didn't have a hard copy. in return, he asked for my address and mailed me a very nice printed color copy. nice guy! his iphone app works great too.
posted by Mach5 at 2:37 PM on October 14, 2010


PDF download of the KICKmap (for folks who want it for free)
posted by hippybear at 2:48 PM on October 14, 2010


I think this would be MUCH better if the neighborhoods weren't so colorful. I'm here for the subway routes, dudes!

Still: great design.
posted by wemayfreeze at 3:52 PM on October 14, 2010


The current MTA map shows all the heliports in the city ...

is ridiculous!
posted by wemayfreeze at 3:57 PM on October 14, 2010


Hey, you never know when you might need an emergency helicopter ride!!
posted by yeoz at 4:15 PM on October 14, 2010


That's probably the thinking. "We're putting out millions of these, they can do double-duty as emergency response maps." Feature Creep: It's not just for technology.
posted by wemayfreeze at 4:38 PM on October 14, 2010


Point: I think this would be MUCH better if the neighborhoods weren't so colorful. I'm here for the subway routes, dudes!

Counterpoint: I find the neighborhood designations, and their emphasis in the design, really useful in this app. I can't confirm the veracity of the names or the borders, but I refer to the neighborhood info on the map all the time in order to be that much more knowledgeable about my city (don't screw me over, KICKmap, I'm counting on you). I often refer to the app while on the subway, so having this info resident on my iPhone is preferable to requiring network access, since that's mostly not available during that time.

The design of KICKmap is not the standard subway map style, and the standard subway map style is a really great design, but that doesn't mean that KICKmap's design is bad. It's another good design. My girlfriend gets all indignant about its style and design choices, but I find them easy to read. YMMV.

There are lots of ways you could approach the design challenge of representing the New York City subway system. Devising any design solution requires that the designer prioritize some aspects over others. Does KICKmap answer your questions about the subway system and the New York City that it serves? Great! If not, there are many other options (I'm not providing links because there are a ton of them and I haven't evaluated them since I'm a satisfied KICKmap customer).

The game that's included in the current version kinda sucks though, since either I'm slow or it's slow. Don't know which.
posted by dammitjim at 4:52 PM on October 14, 2010


« Older Vegan Dad: "When you have kids, supper has to be ...  |  Fuck Yeah Fluid Dynamics... Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments