Stamen is a design and technology studio in San Francisco.

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We design and build maps and data visualizations in San Francisco's Mission District for a wide variety of clients. Hire us!

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Cabspotting

Invisible Dynamics: A living and always-changing map of city life.

“Who knew the pleasures of 21st-century techno-surveillance could be so purely, so innocently aesthetic?”
—Julian Dibbell, Village Voice
“This is stunning work.”
—David Pescovitz, boingboing.net

Invisible Dynamics is a research project sponsored by The Exploratorium which explores the meanings and representations of place. Working across the domains of art, design, cultural geography, cartography, information design, sociology, hydrology, marine sciences, and history, Invisible Dynamics hosts residencies and workshops, as well as developing exhibitions and public programs. Using new technologies for the representation and analysis of spatial information, the project investigates the complexities of the San Francisco Bay Region in the context of the Pacific Rim. The contiguities of bay waters, shores, industrial zones, the interlacing and often unseen systems that give this area its character are all a part of the project focus—extending to explorations of the entire Pacific Rim.

As part of Invisible Dynamics, Stamen has been exploring visualizations of GPS data generated by Yellow Cab taxi cabs in San Francisco. In these frame-by-frame maps of the locations of cabs in the Bay Area, the city ebbs and pulses like the beating of a heart. These movies are available on the cabspotting site.

This project is a collaboration with The Exploratorium and Scott Snibbe. Discuss Project.

"Stamen is steeped in knowledge of web-based interactive systems; they have a terrific and unique sense of design; and a wonderful and eclectic knowledge of cartography and its digital ancestors. They are also among the humblest and kindest people with whom I have worked. I would work with them again in a second."
Scott Snibbe

Color maps the speed and position of taxicabs over time.

Symbol size and orientation to maps the velocity of taxicabs over time.

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