Animated and static cartography
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Previous research has demonstrated that in some circumstances, animated maps are more effective than equivalent static maps, while in other situations the opposite is true. An experiment was conducted in which users were divided into three groups and shown either static maps, animated maps, or a mix of static and animated maps. Originally based on land use/land cover data, the maps were abstract, very complex, and nominally categorized, and they depicted the same areas at five successive points in time. Participants answered questions about the information depicted and rated their confidence in the answers they provided. Results suggest that animation decreases response accuracy and confidence and increases response time, though these effects are largely predicated on other factors.