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A Gigapan of Erie Coke Corporation Eye
|| 3/22/2009 || 4:43 pm || Comments Off on A Gigapan of Erie Coke Corporation Eye || ||


After posting the map, I decided to upload it to the Gigapan website in order to add a little more interactivity to the map.


If you are subscribed to my RSS feed and are reading this on through your RSS reader, please click here to view it on my website or click here to view it on the Gigapan website.


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A Gigapan of West Sahara Lake Circles Quilt #2
|| 3/10/2009 || 11:25 pm || + Render A Comment || ||


Last month I decided to upload my map of the New York Public Library to Gigapan to see what it looked like. Today I uploaded my most recent map for you to check out. I’m not sure if I’ll continue to upload my maps here because it takes a long time to open them up and resave them as jpegs, but I find them quite fun to look at. Maybe the next one I’ll have something hidden in the map and make it into a quasi-Where’s Waldo style game.


If you are subscribed to my RSS feed and are reading this on through your RSS reader, please click here to view it on my website or click here to view it on the Gigapan website.


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A Perpetual Calendar showing the day of any month corresponding to any day of the week, for the year 1775, to the year 2025
|| 3/5/2009 || 7:44 pm || 1 Comment Rendered || ||

Last year I was planning on making six different calendars for 2009 to follow up the three calendars I made for 2008. I never ended up making any. It wasn’t that I couldn’t or wouldn’t, I just did really care at the time to make them. They didn’t end up becoming a priority, but I’m no sure why. I am still considering making one for myself, but haven’t yet.

The other week I came across this broadside on the Library of Congress’ Printed Ephemera Collection and thought it was worthy of sharing here. I’ll note that the graphic above shows only a portion of the original broadside, but for the purposed of this entry, it’s all I want to write about. This Perpetual Calendar was printed in Washington, DC in 1848 by the company Barnard & Sandy and is an interesting analogue means to find what the date is. Here is how:

The four steps it takes to find the day of the week.
1) Guide your finger to the years column on the right (or left) column
2) Guide your finger to the left (or right) to the central month column
3) Guide your finger down to the day of the week column
4) Guide your finger to the day of the month

Thursday, March 5th, 2009

It only works if you know what year it is, what month it is, and know either the day of week or the day of the month it is. For example, lets say you were unconscious for the last two weeks and don’t know what the day of the month it is (5th, 7th, 11th?) but you know that today is a Thursday, in March in the year 2009. This calendar will give you four options for the day of the month: 5, 12, 19, or 26.

Alternatively, if you knew that today was the 5th of March in 2009, but didn’t know the day of the week, you’d have to find where 5 shows up in the days of the month chart then find the point where the months of the year intersect in the day of the week box.

Once you figure out how to use this calendar its pretty easy to use. You can easily use this to plan for weekend trips for the next 16 years into the future or find out the day of the week a specific event took place in the last 234 years. I’ve come to the conclusion that while my art might be beautiful to look at for a year in the form of a calendar, I would rather construct a calendar like this one that outlives the 28 year cycle most leap year calendars follow. I think this would be an awesome project to undertake!



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A Gigapan of the New York Public Library Quilt
|| 2/12/2009 || 12:40 pm || Comments Off on A Gigapan of the New York Public Library Quilt || ||


A couple weeks ago, after seeing the fabulous Gigapan of the 2009 Inauguration by David Bergman, I decided to try out Gigapan for myself.

In the past I’ve used Zoomify to do roughly the same type of zooms, but over the years I’ve found that it has some important limitations. Most notably, I’ve found that Zoomify freezes up after I’ve been using it for a couple of minutes, which would always force me to reload the page. I believe this has to do with the Flash buffer or cache filling up with data and slowing down the viewing experience. Maybe the software engineers have changed this flaw, but I haven’t been too keen on adding all my maps as Zoomifiable entries because it takes too much time and I’m aware of a means to reverse engineer the tiles into the original map.

What is unique about this Gigapan, unlike all of my previous Zoomify maps, is that I went through the extra steps of saving the original map at its full size in .jpg format. In the past when I’d use Zoomify, I’d use a map that was saved at 9,000 x 6,000 pixels, which is half the original size of 18,000 x 12,000 pixels. The reason I shrunk the map was because I was unable to save the full-sized map in .jpg format using my photo manipulation software. Since the free Zoomify converter only took .jpgs, instead of the native tiff file format, I would have to resave the file at its largest size in .jpg format, which was around 9,000 x 6,000 pixels.

In order to bypass this current limitation, I chose to use Graphic Converter to open the original 18,000 x 12,000 tiff file and save it as a .jpg. The inherent problem here is that even with a somewhat new computer, it takes about 15 minutes to open the 216 megapixel file and another 10 minutes to save the file. In the end, the final .jpg saved to about 65 megabytes, which is considerably smaller than the original file size of about 500 megabytes. With this newly compressed map being so much smaller in size, I was able to upload it and share it here.

As regular readers know, a printed 60″ x 40″ copy of this map was donated to the Map Division at the New York Public Library back in October when I gave my presentation to the New York Map Society. If you are in New York City and curious about what it looks like printed out, head over to the library and ask to see it.


If you are subscribed to my RSS feed and are reading this on through your RSS reader, please click here to view it on my website or click here to view it on the Gigapan website.


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On page 149 of Experimental Geography: Radical Approaches to Landscape, Cartography, and Urbanism by Nato Thompson and Independent Curators International
|| 12/3/2008 || 12:20 pm || Comments Off on On page 149 of Experimental Geography: Radical Approaches to Landscape, Cartography, and Urbanism by Nato Thompson and Independent Curators International || ||

Today I received my copy of Experimental Geography: Radical Approaches to Landscape, Cartography, and Urbanism by Nato Thompson and Independent Curators International. As I mentioned before, my Pentagon Quilt #3 was included in Daniel Tucker’s WE ARE HERE Map Archive that is featured in Independent Curators International traveling exhibition. The catalog for the exhibition and goes on sale next month when the exhibit starts its two year international tour. My map is on page 149 next to Lize Mogel & Dario Azzellini’s The Privatization of War: Colombia as Laboratory and Iraq as Large-Scale Application.

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Stereocard of the Great Hall in the Vatican Library
|| 11/17/2008 || 3:59 pm || Comments Off on Stereocard of the Great Hall in the Vatican Library || ||

William Herman Rau (1855-1920), “Corridoio della Biblioteca Vaticana, Roma”. Stereofotografia. Numero di catalogo: 1999.

The other day I was clicking through Wikipedia and I came across this interesting stereogram. Check out these other stereocards.



Third Party Presidential Ballot Access in the United States of America [updated]
|| 10/16/2008 || 12:24 am || Comments Off on Third Party Presidential Ballot Access in the United States of America [updated] || ||

At the beginning of September I posted a similar graphic showing the third party presidential ballot access in the United States of America. In the month since, the final deadlines have passed and the updated graphic above shows the final state by state (plus the colony of the District of Columbia) listing of the candidates who have the statistical chances of winning the electoral college and becoming president of the United States.

What is sad about American democracy as it’s presented on television and in the print media is that America consists of Democrats, Republicans, and Independents, and only those parties and no mention of the ones above. All the third parties above are either completely ignored or they are incorrectly lumped together into Independents. The result is a marginalization of all other parties who might contribute to the political discourse.


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Third Party Presidential Ballot Access in the United States of America
|| 9/3/2008 || 11:07 pm || Comments Off on Third Party Presidential Ballot Access in the United States of America || ||

This entry has depreciated. Please click here to view the most up to date graphic.

The inverted color graph above from Wikipedia shows the states where political parties in America are on the ballot. Each state has its own ballot access rules and regulations, so unlike the two major parties in America, the smaller parties have a harder time getting access to all states in America. In Washington, DC residents like myself have the option of Ralph Nader or Cynthia McKinney as well as the two major party candidates.

Last week in Denver I went to Ralph Nader‘s rally and found his speech to be quite dull. I have the utmost respect for Ralph and he is one of my personal heroes, but when it comes to perennially running for president, he has nothing new to say and is a waste of time when it comes to growing third parties in America. This was the third political rally I’ve attended with Nader as the keynote speaker and his speech this year was not much different from the one I heard at the Green Party National Convention in 2007. His stance on the issues is 100% in line with my vision, but in most cases it seems that he’s still living out a dream that he is somehow going to crack through the two party system. By running as an independent he is able to keep the alternative voice alive in American political discourse, but by not aligning himself with a specific party he’s denying his supporters a political organization that can promote change from the bottom up, instead of strictly from the top-down. This has been sufficiently called Nader’s Nadir and it’s why I am not supporting him. I believe that changing the political sprectrum in America comes from the ground up through a slow coup of multi-partisan support. Or I’d at least like to believe its possible.


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Tag Galaxy [featuring Artomatic 2008 photos]
|| 5/19/2008 || 11:20 pm || Comments Off on Tag Galaxy [featuring Artomatic 2008 photos] || ||

tag galaxy showing Artomatic photographs from Flickr

Tag Galaxy is an interactive viewing environment for Flickr photographs. While I am not a big fan of hosting my artwork on Flickr, I find some of the derivative applications intriguing. I like how this viewing environment has a limit on the number of photographs being displayed, but I don’t really like the lack of zooming in to the photographs. Its more of a thumbnail earth than a galaxy, but it’s fun to use. The image above shows a small sampling of the Artomatic 2008 photographs that have been uploaded to Flickr since the exhibit opened. [via]



Nexus – Facebook Application visually graphs friends and commonalities
|| 3/26/2008 || 2:55 pm || Comments Off on Nexus – Facebook Application visually graphs friends and commonalities || ||

I am a fan of applications that can visualize the interconnectedness of my digital relations. The first iteration of this type of friendgraph was the Friend Wheel Application. While there is isn’t much difference between the two applications, I like how Nexus groups friends non-hierarchically and shows exactly who is connected to who and by what friend. Visually I can see my past and present friends on the radial friendgraph above. (I think it looks like the iconic Death Star from Star Wars.) Off in the corner are my high school friends who I remain in contact with, the lower right and top are college friends, and the far left are my current DC friends. That, however, is a broad generalization because there are so many miscellaneous linkages. What the Nexus application lacks is color customization beyond dark/light, typographical cloud scaling (like friends who link the most receive a larger font), and the application’s residency in a user’s Facebook’s profile. I am still using the Friendwheel application because it shows up in my profile, whereas the Nexus application is an off-site application.

Below is the less visually engaging spring friendgraph.

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Nikolas Schiller is a second-class American citizen living in America's last colony, Washington, DC. This blog is my on-line repository of what I have created or found on-line since May of 2004. If you have any questions or comments, please contact:

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  • thank you,
    come again!