Step 1 – Login to Save your Work

Make sure you sign-in prior to starting your map so that your progress is saved. Use the button with the three lines (A) to open the sign-in menu. If you are new to EQUATOR, use the “Sign Up” button (B) to create an account. If you are already a user, use the “Sign In” button (C) to login.

 


 

Step 2 – Search for a Location

Search for your location using the search bar in the upper left corner. Once you have typed in a location, hit enter to bring up a list of search results. Select the location you are interested in viewing from the list (A). Once you do so, your view will zoom to that area.

 


 

Step 3 – Search for Layers

You can use the search box at the top of the list to search for layers or locations. Here, we are searching for a layer with the keyword “bike” in its description, and after that, layers with the keyword “ferry”. After hitting enter, a number of locations and layers have appeared with this word in the description. Scroll through the layer list to find the layer(s) of data you are looking for.

 


 

Step 4 – Adding Layers to the Map, Downloading Data

Once you click on the layer you are interested in, you will arrive at this screen. All of the information contained in Box A is provided by the data owner. Here the layer description is provided, when available. To return to the search and list of layers, click on the back arrow in the top left.

Box B shows information about when the data layer was created, as well as when it was last updated. There are two buttons at the bottom of the panel: “Source” and “Add.” By clicking on “Source”, you will be directed to the page where the layer was sourced from. From there, you have the option to download the data in various formats. If you would like to add this data to the map, simply click on “Add.”

Box C includes a button that allows you to turn the map to HD mode. In HD mode, the data layers will appear more clear and crisp.

The first time you load a layer, it will have a random color assigned to it. Sometimes, the color blends in with the map imagery. You can toggle the imagery (base layer) on and off using the green button shown in Box D. This feature will help you check to see if the layer has loaded. Box D also allows you to change the base layer to different options (with labels, imagery, no imagery, etc.).

Now, repeat steps 4-5 for any other layers you would like. In this case, we are adding a total of three layers: “Bikeway”, “Ferry Route”, and “Ferry Routes”.

 


 

Step 5 – The Layer List

Click on the “Layers” button (A) to bring up the layers menu. From this menu, you can change layer formatting (color, line thickness, etc.), add your own markup, and change the order of layers. If you have loaded multiple layers, you can change the order that layers appear on the map by dragging them above or below other layers in the layer list (B).

To format a layer, click on the layer name in the layer list (B)

If you would like to turn layers on and off, use the eye icon on the right side of the layer name (C).

 


 

Step 6 – Create A Report

Go to the Projects menu (A). From there, select Add Report (B). This will bring you to a menu where you can choose the type of report you want. Double click on your desired report format and move on to Step 8. (this tutorial will use a Blank 8.5”x11” format.)

 


 

Step 7 – Create a Map View

Once you are in the report editor, select Map View (A) and click and drag to create your map view (B). After double clicking within the map view, you can tilt, zoom, and rotate it just as you would in the main map. Position the map to your satisfaction and proceed to Step 9.

 


 

Step 8 – Marking Your Route

To mark checkpoints, alternate routes, or other points of interest on your map, you can label them with arrows. Equator Maps allows you to import whatever marker images you need. Simply drag and drop them from your files to the grey space outside the report, then drag them into the map view. If you want you can switch off the labels on the baselayer to make your own labels more clear. Position the markers as needed and move to Step 10.

 


 

Step 9 – Format The Map

There are a number of things you can do to clean up your map and make it visually appealing. Click on the map view to edit the layers. Then, you can change the width and colour of your route lines by using the eye and gear icons, visible when you hover over a layer (A).

You might also want to grey out the baselayer slightly to highlight your routes even further. Hover over the baselayer (B) and type in the value you want, with one being full contrast and zero being none. (this map is at 0.5 contrast).

Finally, you can drag, resize, and otherwise modify the scale bar and the north arrow (C and D). Once you are satisfied with how the map view looks, go to Step 11.

 


 

Step 10 – Add A Legend

Routes are somewhat meaningless with no legend to inform people of what they represent. To insert a legend, click on the map view and select Legend (A) in the right-hand menu. Then, click and drag to form the legend wherever you want (B).

 


 

Step 11 – Title Text

To finish off your map, add some title text! Click out of the map view and select Text (A). Draw a text box where you want the title to be and modify the font and text size to your liking (B).

 


 

Step 12 – Name and Save

Finally, name and save your report. In the text box at the top of your screen (A), type the name you wish to give your report. This is what it will be saved as in your account, but not what it will be called if you download it. If you do wish to download it, choose your format (B) and download.

 

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Rebecca is the Co-Founder and CEO of Equator.