Time-series animation is a visually intuitive way to display urban growth. Animations of landuse change for the Baltimore-Washington region were generated by showing a series of images one after the other in sequential order. Before creating an animation, various issues which will affect the appearance of the animation should be considered, including the number of original data frames to use, the optimal animation display speed, the number of intermediate frames to create between the known frames, and the output media on which the animations will be displayed. To create new frames between the known years of data, the change in each theme (i.e. urban development, water bodies, transportation routes) must be characterized and an algorithm developed to create the in-between frames. Example time-series animations were created using a temporal GIS database of the Baltimore-Washington area. Creating the animations involved generating raster images of the urban development, water bodies, and principal transportation routes; overlaying the raster images on a background image; and importing the frames to a movie file. Three-dimensional perspective animations were created by draping each image over digital elevation data prior to importing the frames to a movie file. ?? 1997 Elsevier Science Ltd.
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Time-series animation techniques for visualizing urban growth