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Curious Software — World Maps map animation package

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Curious World Maps is the unusual title for an innovative map animation package developed by Curious Software. It enables designers in the professional video and broadcast industry to create presentation quality maps from the whole world down to a single city block.

Because it incorporates built-in databases of the world licensed from Bartholomew, together with world-wide relief data provided by the US Geological Survey, creating an impressive map with shading and texturing is simply a matter of selecting the countries, regions, and places you want to include and then specifying how they should be displayed and animated.

The program is already being used to create high quality maps by a number of broadcasters including ABC World News Tonight, The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, and the Met Office.

Developing documentation for Curious World Maps posed an interesting problem: because of its intuitive user interface it is a very easy program to understand and start using, but it also contains a wide range of advanced features which need careful explanation.

The solution was to produce a highly illustrated user guide, describing how to use the product with a series of clear worked examples, together with a comprehensive HTML help system, context-linked to the software to provide in-depth information about each of the program’s features. In fact the user guide has also proved to be a useful sales tool, and Curious Software’s Managing Director Justin Wise said “We’ve found that the best way of explaining to a potential customer what the product is about is to leave them a copy of the excellent user guide”.

For more information visit:

Human-Computer Interface • 17 Signet Court • Swanns Road • Cambridge • CB5 8LA • England
Tel: +44 (0)1223 314934 • Fax: +44 (0)1223 462562