forum.supercharge.info

Proposals to de-clutter markers

The continued expansion of the supercharger network has started to present a bit of a usability problem for the maps on supercharge.info:
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(Bonus points to anyone who can identify all four regions above! :rofl:)

I’ve been experimenting over the past few days with a few different alternatives and wanted to get some feedback before I submit a pull request. For now at least, I have a list of options at the top so I can switch between them at various locations and zoom levels:


Here’s (roughly) that same part of California with clusters and with small markers:
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And here’s a slightly zoomed in view of the Los Angeles area with marker sizes that vary by density vs all “Large” markers:
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Personally I’m developing a preference for the clustered view, which renders faster than the others, so I made it the default for now. I’d really appreciate feedback, and I’d be happy to answer any questions. Also, if anyone wants to look at my code changes, they’re all on GitHub:

–Paul

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I think the same symbol rendered in different ways on a map winds up being confusing.
Clusters are the default on the Tesla nav and in general, I believe, so I have no objection there.
In my special use case, where the chargers are literally across the street from each other, seeing a “2” on a map where it looks like a single charger would spur me to investigate further and enlarge the area versus the assumption of a single site.
I assume the different colors correlate to the permit, construction, active current colors?
I appreciate the effort. Thanks!

Thanks for the feedback! Yeah, clustering is a pretty common method for handling a large number of points on a map, and like I said it seems to improve performance / responsiveness. Yes, the different colors represent the different statuses, which is why some of the numbers overlap – usually clusters are calculated so they don’t overlap at all. I could use a different color for any point with multiple statuses to prevent overlap, or just leave it as-is. As you pointed out, seeing any number on a map like that would prompt someone to zoom in if they want more details.

I did think specifically about the case of pairs (even before I saw your TMC post!) and coded the hover text a bit differently when the number shown is 2:
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Interestingly, Tesla’s web site (Find Us | Tesla) doesn’t use clustering, it’s more like the “By Zoom” option – each marker is small when zoomed out, and then they all get bigger once you zoom in to the state level or so. And I do agree that the “by density” view has the most potential to be confusing; it was my favorite for a while in terms of maximizing information at lower zoom levels, till the clustered version progressed to the point where it is now. :slight_smile:

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Hey paulkva,

Thank you for raising this point, interesting discussion.

Personally, I hate “cluster numbers” where you don’t see the exact location (unless you zoom in all the way). I very much prefer things the way they are. :slight_smile:

It’s one of the many things I really like about this site: open the map and you see all the dots. No fuss, no hassle.

But as I said, I appreciate that you brought this up and if the majority of editors and users prefer a cluster approach, by all means, do it. It would be nice to have a slider to turn it on and off though. :wink:

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I also hate clusters, but would be okay with them if you could do something like clicking on the cluster tag will immediately populate all the points it was representing. What most annoys me is that you zoom in on them and instead of seeing the points you wanted, it just breaks up into a bunch of smaller clusters. And if I want to see the exact points but they happen to get placed in separate “sub-clusters” then I might not be able to find an appropriate zoom level that will simultaneously show the two/multiple specific locations I’m interested in.

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I didn’t realize some people felt so strongly against clustering, so I appreciate that feedback.

if the majority of editors and users prefer a cluster approach, by all means, do it. It would be nice to have a slider to turn it on and off though. :wink:

Turning clusters on and off is already implemented – see the “Marker Sizes” selector in my previous post. :slight_smile: I believe if you login it will save your preferences, and I’d be happy to defer to others on which setting should be the default.

clicking on the cluster tag will immediately populate all the points it was representing

Interesting idea - right now I just have it zooming but I think this would be possible. Maybe I’ll poke at it over the next few days if I can.

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I agree with others about the clustering - although as you suggest, it is configurable so that’s good :slight_smile:

I’m not too keen about a mix of larger/smaller markers on the same map. There have been many requests over the years to use marker size to reflect either number of stalls, or charge speed (72/150/250 kW). I think if they were all large, or all small then that might be helpful, but having a mix of large/small on one map would imply that the size reflects a characteristic about a site.

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