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Mapping with ArcGIS Pro by Ryan Malhoski, Amy Rock

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Color as a visual variable

Like text, color can be used to represent qualitative and quantitative data on a map. Qualitative schemes are typically best represented with distinct colors, as color values and data values are typically unconnected (with the exception of the cartographic conventions noted earlier). Quantitative schemes may use one or more colors, but, more importantly, vary the value of each color to imply quantity.

Qualitative data is usually represented with categorical colors, where each value has a different hue. Colors selected in this scheme should have equal values, which means no one color should dominate the others in terms of visual hierarchy. Certain colors, such as reds or intense blues, can be difficult to manage ...

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