Polymaps, Mapnik, and TileStache software
prettymaps are interactive maps that integrate data from freely available sources into multidimensional renderings of different places. The application pulls geographic data from open-mapping projects—including street-level data from OpenStreetMap, land-formation data from Natural Earth, and place-specific data from Flickr—and plots them atop one another. Users can view the maps at varying degrees of detail, zooming from a view of the world to a view of a single neighborhood. They are visually striking, with cities transformed into colorful abstractions, but the shapes are recognizable for anyone already familiar with the terrain.