Tobler's Flow Mapper
Geographical movement is of crucial importance. This is because
much change in the world is due to movement; the movement
of people, ideas, money, or material. One way of depicting
and analyzing geographical movement is by way of geographical
maps. A convenient and rapid method of displaying movement
data on such maps is therefore very useful. A flow mapping
program is one approach to this objective. For in depth information see:
About Flow Mapper
In 2003 CSISS supported an effort to produce an interactive
flow mapping program. The result is an updated Windows-based
version of a program originally designed and programmed by
Waldo Tobler in 1987. Tobler's original application was updated
by David Jones using Microsoft Visual Basic .Net and SVG (Scaleable
Vector Graphics) for map rendering. It requires as input locational
coordinates and a table of interaction between places. Additional
input may include place names for the location coordinates
and a file of boundary coordinates (the background map). The
user has several menu options for producing a map. The program
allows for the production of a total movement map shown by
volume-scaled bands, net movement given by scaled arrows,
or simultaneous two-way moves.
Flow Mapper Functionality in ArcGIS
Flow Data Model Tools consist of several ArcGIS 9.x VBA macros. The prototype software integrates the
functionality of Flow Mapper into ArcGIS, and allows ArcGIS interaction with the Flow Data Model.
Source code and further information.
Flow Mapper Requirements
- Microsoft Windows 98SE, ME, 2000 or XP
- Microsoft Dot.Net Framework Installed
- Microsoft Internet Explorer (Required to display maps properly)
- Scalable Vector Graphics Support for Internet Explorer: Adobe SVG Plugin 3.x or higher
- C:\temp folder
Installing Flow Mapper
- Remove any existing version of Flow Mapper (Start > Control
Panel > Add/Remove Programs).
- Verify that your operating system meets the requirements above.
- Install the .Net Framework if necessary. Many newer Windows
XP machines already come pre-installed with it. Go to Start
> Control Panel, the .Net Framework Management Icon
will be visible if it is installed (you may need to look
in Administrative Tools.) If not visible you will need to
Download and install the .Net Framework (21MB)
- If you you
have not done so previously, install Adobe SVG Plugin.
If you are unsure, install it again.
Download and install
Adobe SVG Viewer (2.4MB)
- Make sure C:\Temp (c:\temp) exists, the application
uses this directory
to write temporary files.
- Download and
install Flow Mapper (22MB), unzip the
files o temporary directory and run setup.exe. Flow
mapper will be installed and a shortcut will be placed
in the Start Menu under Flow Mapper
and on your desktop. The documentation, and Data_Sets
will be automatically installed and links placed in the
Flow Mapper folder.
- After installing Flow Mapper, Download
the Documents and Data update (8.5MB, 7-19-05)
and unzip it to your installation folder (the default
folder is C:\Program
Please send questions and comments to Waldo Tobler
Tools Clearinghouse: Kevin Konty
Search Engines: Eric White
This page updated
December 12, 2001