ArcGIS Living Atlas

Piracy & Time Travel

The ability to slide on the data visualization goggles to filter, pivot, animate, and otherwise magically parse a phenomenon is a real wonder. I’ve been doing this a while but am still frequently amazed when the structure of a phenomenon washes over my screen. This StoryMap walks through the visual analysis of 30 years of nautical piracy through various cross-sections of the calendar.

While I am not a marine security expert or global economist/sociologist/explorer, I do make maps for these sorts of people. The story map presents nautical piracy in place and time, which offers up all sorts of questions. Questions I don’t know the answer to; but maps don’t necessarily have to answer questions. Maps prompt new and more specific questions.

Here are a couple extracts from the StoryMap. First, a linear look at the past three decades…

And here is a seasonal cross-section of this era…

I hope you check it out and ask questions of your own. The data is sourced from the National Geospatial Intelligence agency, and is available as a feed, updated weekly, in the ArcGIS Living Atlas of the World. The maps were created in ArcGIS Pro with Arcade date functions, a multiple map frame Layout, and the Firefly style.

About the author

I have far too much fun looking for ways to understand and present data visually, hopefully driving product strategy and engaging users. I work in the Content team at Esri, pushing and pulling data in all sorts of absurd ways -and then talking about it. I also get to spend time with the Story Maps team, working on fun and useful user experiences. When I'm not doing those things, I'm chasing around toddlers and wrangling chickens, and generally getting into other ad-hoc adventures. Life is good. Loads more how-to posts: My YouTube channel: Loads of Styles for Pro: Instagram:


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