For a while I’ve been thinking about how to make Open Data more tangible. Even with great visualizations, it tends to remain stuck in computers and smartphones. Recently, I had the idea to start taking geodata, released by cities, and start making it into physical things. This is the first steps and prototypes: Making a puzzle out of district borders.
- First download the city boundaries as Shapefile
- Make sure it’s WGS 84 EPSG 4326 formatted
- Convert it to SVG using kartograph.py
- Convert it to PDF - so the lazercutter can understand it
- Adopt the PDF for lazercutting (set line-widths to hairlines…)
- Try to assemble the puzzle
To make the process a little easier Stefan created a script for converting shapefiles to svg with the data.
We created puzzles for both Vienna and Graz using district boundaries released as Open Data. Once done, we noticed that solving a district boundary puzzle is not as easy as it seems… (even though the number of pieces are limited)