Contains the full lesson along with a supporting toolkit, including teachers’ notes.
There are many different types of map and each type is designed to show particular things. However, every map is an attempt to describe the spatial relationships of chosen features. These might be physical features such as county boundaries, mountains, motorways and the location of towns and cities. Other types of map might be designed to show social or economic information such population density, public transport routes and the location of particular industries.
In modern times, maps are used for decision making and planning purposes in many areas of activity. Flood control, mineral exploration, housing, education, environment, industry, and health are among the almost limitless examples. Obviously, making decisions in these areas requires the consideration of many different types of information. The information comes from various sources. Each of these sources is referred to as geographical information system (GIS) and the data provided is known as geo-spatial data. Clearly it would be extremely useful for decision makers if the data from these various sources could be displayed at the same time on one map. This is exactly what the GeoHive service from OSi offers. In this lesson we will describe GeoHive and learn how to use it to make an important decision.
What is GeoHive?
GeoHive is a web platform (www.geohive.ie) that allows the user to combine chosen sets of geo-spatial data on a map. These data sets can be placed on, and taken off, the map in layers. This process is known as layered mapping.
Using layered mapping
Assume you are moving to a new location and need to know about the schools in the area and how they are served by public transport. The first thing to do is to log in to GeoHive, click the menu button on the top right and select the Make Your Map option. This brings you to the ‘Map Viewer’ where you will see a map of Ireland. Using the ‘Data Catalogue’ on this page, you choose the first map you want to use. This is called a basemap because it is the map on which the other data will be layered. You can select the location you want on a basemap. If necessary you can search for a location by entering its name, address or Eircode. You can also zoom in or out using the menu on the right hand side of the page. There are ten basemaps available, including aerial maps and historical maps from as far back as 1837. The most up to date basemap is called the GeoHive map and this is the one used in this lesson.