[R] Mapping in R - in the common sense

Duncan Murdoch murdoch at stats.uwo.ca
Wed Nov 7 15:21:39 CET 2001

On Wed, 7 Nov 2001 10:56:05 +0000, you wrote in message
<20011107105604.C1491 at socrates-a.ucl.ac.uk>:

>Dear R people,
>I am wondering how difficult it would be to produce graphs based on maps in R (like "a county is red
>where x is high").  I reckon this requires the coordinates for the polygons that make up the 
>map and also a mapping to a set of identifiers to assign colours, hatches, etc.
>Would it be possible to pass R a vector graphics of the map and back out the polygon definitions from 
>that (supposing that the map is drawn the same way, ie redundantly with full polygons)?  If yes, there 
>could be a matrix with the identifiers and the polygon parameters....  If no, is there any other/better 
>idea.  Has anyone tried this before?

There's a maps library for S that can do this.  It's incompletely
ported to R; currently it mostly works on Unix, and just recently I
got it working on Windows, but it's not packaged up and ready to
distribute yet.  It's quite large (there's a lot of data in a world
map), so I won't email it to you, but if you want the Unix version,
you can get it from Ray Brownrigg's ftp site:


Duncan Murdoch
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