Friday, April 13, 2018

A map that caught my eye

The Westin Hotel in Westminster, CO had this map available in its fitness center. I know it looks like nothing special, but it is not the look that caught my attention.

The Westin is near an amphitheater and a park. The terrain isn't quite flat, but it isn't mountainous either, which makes it good for a walk or run. This small 5 1/4 x 3 3/4" map is the perfect device for helping someone get in a good workout. The front side is the map, while the back side contains map directions. What makes it special, though, it that it is plasticized paper. Yup, waterproof, sweat-proof, snow-proof, rain-proof and mud-proof.

Since this is a blog about digitization and copyright, lets notice that this map has clearly taken advantage of a map (or maps) that already existed. Likely whatever map which was the basis for this was modified to fit the need of this specific running map. I don't know if using that underlying map was "fair" or if New Balance, who actually created this map, paid for the use. Whichever they did, I trust that they have kept it legal.

But let's also notice that this map - contents and type of paper - was made with its use in mind. We often create aids for our users that meet our needs (the library's needs) and don't always consider how a person will use them. Are we providing content in the correct format, language, etc.? I suspect our community members would be happier if we spent a moment thinking about that before we create materials for them.

Running map, 5 1/4 x 3 3/4”

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