1
Sep
2015
1

Map colouring in takes off

When I blogged last week about adult colouring in and made a selection of British city maps available for download to be coloured in – I didn’t expect to create such a stir! I’ve been thrilled to see so many of you eagerly printing the maps out and sharing your colouring in with me at OS. I’ve heard from geography teachers who are excited that their map geekery is becoming mainstream, students who are finding it the perfect break from their dissertations and map lovers across the world from Canada to Australia.

London seems to be the most popular map to colour in so far...thanks to the team at Snowflake, geography teacher Mr Hunt and the  map curator at Melbourne Uni for sharing their map colouring in efforts

London seems to be the most popular map to colour in so far…thanks to the team at Snowflake, geography teacher Mr Hunt and the map curator at Melbourne Uni for sharing their map colouring in efforts

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28
Aug
2015
1

Minecraft maps continue to grow

OS GB Minecraft map wins Guinness World RecordThere’s no end to the range of uses for maps – and not just for walking or planning either! Earlier this week, we debuted our maps for colouring in and now we’re talking about Minecraft maps after seeing two new releases this summer…

It’s been almost two years since the OS Minecraft map of Great Britain was released, with 22 billion blocks representing the 224,000 square kilometres of our country. In the first few months after the release, our Minecraft map was downloaded over 50,000 times. It even won us a Guinness World Record as the largest real-world place represented in Minecraft!

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24
Aug
2015
8

Maps join adult colouring in

IMG_2947Unless you’ve been under a rock for the early part of 2015, you’ll probably be aware of the latest craze, adult colouring in. It’s possible that, like me, you’ve jumped on the craze and discovered the unexpected relaxation benefits of gradually colouring in a detailed drawing. It isn’t just a UK craze, it’s sweeping the world, as The Guardian reported: “Five of Amazon’s top 10 last week were adult colouring-in books, as were six of Brazil’s top 10 non-fiction list. Last year in France, the combined colouring-in industry sold 3.5m books.”

With the growth in technology and social media meaning we are all available 24/7 and spending increasing hours of the day looking at screens, some time out spent colouring in can be hugely beneficial.  There does seem to be some science behind the trend with numerous psychologists admitting that when it comes to relaxation, colouring has surprisingly scientific results.

When we’re running around at work or home making decisions and solving problems, we use beta brainwaves, which take up a lot of mental energy. The brain can’t sustain this mode, it would be like keeping up the speed of a 100m sprint for a prolonged period. We need to slow down to a mental jog and use alpha brainwaves instead.  Some people find it hard to slow down, but activities like colouring can actually help put the brain into alpha mode. It gives the brain something simple to focus on.

Where does map colouring in fit in?

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21
Aug
2015
0

Last chance to enter #OSPhotofit junior photo competition

Keen photographers aged 16 and under have until 31 August to enter our junior photo competition. We’re looking for fantastic photos of Great Britain to feature on the cover of our eight OS Tour Maps. Keen photographers don’t just have the chance to be on the cover of our maps, but also to win an iPad Mini.

#OSPhotofit (6)

Steve Backshall helped us launch the competition earlier this summer, hear what he had to say: Read More

19
Aug
2015
0

New simple guides for OS OpenData products

Guest post by summer intern, Jessica Fisher

Under the banner of OS OpenData are over a dozen products which vary in format, scale and design to offer the greatest flexibility and usability possible. These products are all freely downloadable from our OS website – and now there are new start-up guides to using a number of the products.

OS  Open Map Local in QGIS

OS Open Map Local in QGIS

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17
Aug
2015
3

Join our #MapFold challenge

Joe Crowley completed the #MapFold challenge

Joe Crowley completed the #MapFold challenge

We’ve just released a new series of map reading videos with our #GetOutside champion Steve Backshall, but they didn’t tackle that crucial paper map challenge…how to fold a paper map. Coping with huge maps in wet and windy conditions can break the most avid outdoors fan, but there is a good way to tackle it. Bonita Norris, another champion on our team, has recorded a video showing how to fold a map, and it’s been a popular choice on our YouTube channel.

So, with official guidance on map folding out there – we thought it was time for a challenge…

How quickly can you fold a paper map?

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