Web Trend Map 4.0: Proud To Be A Railway Junction

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Fonts in Use, News | Jürgen Siebert | April 17, 2009

The fourth edition of the A0 sized internet map “Web Trend Map” is ready for printing. Last week Information Architects Zürich posted the Beta version (6740 x 4768 pixels) on Flickr for review. The Web Trend Map maps the 333 leading web domains and the 111 most influential internet people onto the Tokyo Metro map.

Web Trend Map 4.0

Any domain on the map can be evaluated based on its station’s height, width and position. A station’s height represents its domain’s success, which is measured not only by traffic, but also by revenue and trend. The stability of the company behind the domain is translated into the station’s width. However its domain must have proven itself as a significant online component, otherwise even a large corporation can still have a thin station. Lastly a station’s location on the map tells two things. First the metro line it is situated on indicates what group it belongs to. Second its position on the map reveals its importance; whether it is a part of the tech establishment, a traffic hub, or an online suburb.

The FontShop network, with its worldwide shops, blogs, FontStruct, and other related websites is proud to discover it is a railway junction between the Money line and the Social railway line connecting to the Creativity line. Thank you, Information Architects. The FontFeed was also happy to find typography blog peers I Love Typography, Swissmiss and its author Tina Roth Eisenberg, and typographic community Typophile on the Creativity line.

The Web Trend Map uses the classic Frutiger Condensed which is perfectly suited for this type of application. It is a highly legible font that works well for readers who may need quick orientation while en route. MetaDesign recognised this when they adapted Adrian Frutiger’s design to create FF Transit for the official use of the Berlin Public Transportation Services (BVG) and Düsseldorf Airport. They pared the font design down and extended the family by creating a new set of matching italic fonts. In addition, they altered the widths and spacing of each font to enhance their functionality in different situations.

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6 Comments:

  1. Can someone just explain why someone would use this thing ? Who the hell needs this ?

    Posted by Rudy on Apr. 17, 2009
  2. Rudy, it’s art. ;)

    I like it, I wouldn’t mind hanging this on my office wall. Very nice design.

    Posted by Yves Peters on Apr. 17, 2009
  3. Lot of details. Lot of research.
    I LOVE it. But I wonder, why you choose black as a background? It looks good on screen, but I don’t think that will be the same case on print.

    Posted by Angger Atmawarin on Apr. 17, 2009
  4. Jürgen, your synopsis is better than the author’s site. Congratulations to FontShop. Of course I’m happy to see Typophile at the intersection of “creativity” and “sharing”.

    Posted by Joe Pemberton on Apr. 17, 2009
  5. No one needs it and it certainly isn’t art…

    The web trends map is a dialogue that Information Architects have used to propel themselves into your lives. It has been loved by not only the web professionals community but also equally by Sunday periodicals… How many web companies do you know have been credited online and in newspapers with equal gusto.

    what it presents is an informed opinion of the internet as a social mechanism over the last year… and for that reason it’s appeal is that it manages to convey something sprawling and vast into a 2d space most people are able to understand through the power of informatics. I would have preferred a while background option to be available as i find black oppressive on a wall.

    Posted by Tony Mosley on Apr. 18, 2009
  6. Well said, Tony. I agree this is a wonderful example of the power of information graphics to explain something quite complex and make it understandable to most.

    It’s funny two commenters already complained about the black background — it is a common remark in the comments on the iA blog.

    Posted by Yves Peters on Apr. 18, 2009

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