Last updated: October 17, 2013
Frequently Asked Questions
This list will help you to find tools together with readings about how to use them.
It is an easy way to go through all the information on this website.
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Click on one of the categories below:
- How can I add sound to a PowerPoint publication?
- PowerPoint has the option to insert audio into
a slide (see Insert ribbon).
- If you want audio to play across multiple slides
or the entire presentation, a little bit more work
is required, see:
Play sounds across multiple slides.
- Is it possible to embed an interactive / animated
map into a PowerPoint slide?
Yes there are several techniques to do so:
- A commercial solution is provided by
Gmark. Their product
vMaps adds a new button to your PowerPoint ribbon
which gives access to more than 3000 vector maps
at a single click which can be edited, styled and
animated as you need. In addition, Gmark sells interactive
- Using an map image and PowerPoint's tools one
can create an interactive callout maps as
demonstrated in this
- One can embed Google maps (and other
web pages) with the help of the
Live Web add-in, as explained in this
- The native PowerPoint animation allows to create
an animated map (point moving along a path),
- My PowerPoint presentations tend to have too much
text. How can I make better slides?
- I am new to data visualization. Is there any gentle
- How can I add data visualization to my website without
- A simple start is
once you have got your data in a spreadsheet, you
can copy them to the Data Wrapper website, choose
a chart type, publish the chart and copy the embed
code into your web page.
- Another online service is
upload your data into an online spreadsheet,
create a charts and download this infographic as
an image file.
- A similar approach is Google's
Fusion Tables: you must upload your spreadsheet
and can choose a chart. Next you will get a link,
which can be embedded in your web page.
- Usually, Flash charts have a more attractive
is a non-free product, which produces interactive
Flash charts. Embedding is a bit more complex. Moreover,
notice, that Flash is not (easily) displayed on
mobile devices such as the iPad.
- More advanced users may have a look on
Web (in particular the tools section: special
tools for RDF encoded data).
- Further readings on methods and techniques are
to be found in the
Data Visualization section of our
- A good-looking and free product is
which supports a large set of animated chart
classes and provide many chart types. The
default appearance will usually be all you need,
and you can always customize a chart to fit the
look and feel of your website.
- A more generic approach is using
your work with vector graphics on the web.
- For more products, see the
section of our Tools page.
- Is there any software to interactively explore
and analyze my data (and show it to other people)?
- GGobi is
an open source visualization program for
exploring high-dimensional data. It provides
highly dynamic and interactive graphics such as
tours, as well as familiar graphics such as the
scatter plot, bar chart and parallel coordinates
offers a range of web-based and desktop software
to cater to diverse mapping and visualization
needs. It is intended to make data analysis
easy, efficient and enjoyable.
- More in the
Data Visualization section of Tools page,
see for example Gapminder and Tableau Public.
- How to create a timeline without programming?
- There is a wide range of software and online
services for creating timelines. We only give a few
examples, more information is to be found in the
Timelines section of the Tools page (and also
that list is a selection). A choice depends on
project purpose and individual preferences, e.g.
teaching (several people may enter data), static on
a web page (single author), is the timeline
printable or not, is there a choice between sharing
and keeping private. Examples of timeline services,
which don't require programming are
- I want to have my complete timeline on my own
server. What software is available?
- A classic piece of software is the
SIMILE timeline widget, but it may not work so
well on touch devices.
Timeline.js is rather popular, it works well on
touch devices and also made according the principle
of responsive design.
- How to make an (interactive) map for a website?
- This is a complex question. It depends. A first
choice is between georeferenced vector maps and
image based maps. The latter type is more frequently
used in infographics. Although various image file
types can be used, SVG files may give best results.
For information about adding interactivity to
SVG files, see the section
and Animation of the Techniques page.
- Another option is using Flash, but
this does not work on most mobile devices (at least
not without special apps as the Puffin or Photon
- Unless you use one of the online map
authoring services (e.g.
see the section on this website)
you will have to do some
to read the
introduction by Bruner:
How To Build an Interactive Map with Open-Source
Tools? There is more useful information in the
and Mapping section of out Techniques page.
- I am not going to spend much time to map making.
Are there any quick solutions?
- How to obtain map backgrounds, which can be
- There are a few sites where digital maps in
various image formats can be downloaded provided the
- You may also use the online map authoring
services to create the map image you need (see above
Wikimedia Commons has a nice collection of SVG
World Map Finder is a useful site to discover
map files, even on city level.
- For more, see the section
of Tools & Resources page.
- I need a historical map, i.e. a map showing a
geographic situation of the past. How can I make that
type of maps?
- Start with an old map. To find a suitable one,
browse through the collections of digitalized old
maps in section
Historical and Old Maps of the Tools & Resources
- Use the old map as background to draw upon an
SVG map, using one of the
- What should I know to make an e-book?
- First of all, you should understand the
e-book concept, the different standards, what they imply and how to
convert. Some introductions are listed in the
e-Publishing | General section of Techniques
- What tools do I need to create an epub book?
- A dedicated e-book editor is highly recommended,
for example Sigil for epub 2 and BlueGriffon or
Yutoh for epub 3. In addition, you need to install
an e-book reader as Readium or Azardi. Please, refer
to the Epub2 and Epub 3 sections on the
Tools page for more
information about tools and to the same section on the
page for the 'how to'.