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New Feature: Move Icons Along a Line In Animations!

News March 22, 2024

In the ever-evolving landscape of digital mapping tools, we are always happy to hear your suggestions or missing features! Here we are today with a new feature that has been much-requested by users: the ability to add icons on top of animated lines. This innovative addition opens up a world of possibilities for users, from enhancing news reporting visuals to creating captivating travel animations. In this article, we’ll delve into the technical intricacies of this new feature and explore the diverse range of applications it offers.

Animated Lines and Having Icons Move Along the Line

Mapcreator’s new feature builds upon its existing capability to animate lines, allowing them to grow dynamically from one end to the other. This animation is achieved by representing the line as a series of points, and the point that represents the end of the line can be used to provide the coordinates of the icon.

If you’re curious, here is a short technical insight:

The magic begins with the extraction of these coordinates from the endpoint of the growing line, as these coordinates are the foundation for positioning the icon. To align the icon with the line, the code simply takes the coordinates of the second-to-last point and calculates the angle of that point relative to the point at the end of the line continuously. This angle is then added to the original angle of the icon.

And that’s it. Now we have an icon sitting on the end of a growing line! From here you can of course still change the styling of certain elements, but you’ve got the basis covered. Continue reading below for some more use cases and examples of moving icons along line animations.

Dynamic News Reportings 

Mapcreator’s icon-on-line animation feature revolutionizes the way news events are visualized. Now, news reporters can dynamically illustrate unfolding events like plane crashes or world events like the Tour de France, placing icons on animated lines. This immersive approach not only captures attention but also provides a clear and engaging narrative to the audience. The seamless movement of icons along growing lines adds a layer of dynamism to news reporting, setting Mapcreator apart as a powerful storytelling tool.

Immersive Travel Itineraries

Take your travel animations to the next level with Mapcreator’s innovative feature. By following the routes of flights or cruise ships using icons on animated lines, travel agencies can create captivating and immersive representation of their trips. The coordination between icons and animated paths enhances the storytelling aspect of travel maps, allowing users to share their journeys in a visually compelling way. Allow icon-on-line animation to bring your travel stories to life! 

All Transportation Visualizations

From pedestrian pathways to bike and vehicle routes or whether it’s exploring the world by air or sea,  the icon-on-line feature adds a dynamic dimension to transportation visualization. Icons seamlessly move along paths, depicting the movement of various modes of transportation.

Icon-Only Animation

Let’s go beyond traditional mapping tools and allow users to create animations with just icons! By making the line transparent and duplicating it, users can isolate the moving icon, resulting in a unique visual effect. The duplicate line, when made opaque and without animation, creates an illusion of an icon moving along a path. This feature opens up new creative possibilities for users.

Try it out for yourself!

Mapcreator ensures a user-friendly experience by simplifying the process. With just a few steps, users can bring their maps to life, creating engaging animations that align seamlessly with their narratives.

If you are new to our mapping animations, please start from our blog article on animated lines and follow the next steps from there.

1. Select the animated line you’ve created on your map 
2. On the left side, a styling menu will appear, on the bottom of the menu you can see the ‘’move icon along line’’ option. Click the toggle next to it.
3. Select the icon you want to use.
4. Watch the magic happen as the icon automatically follows the line!

There are a few more options you can decide on from here. In the timeline, you can decide when you want the icon to pop up or disappear, regardless of where the line starts or ends. The line and the icon are elements you can select and edit separately. If you want the icon to appear halfway and stay until the end – this is no trouble!

Other options include whether you want the icon to align with the line direction (the default setting) or add custom rotation. You can also decide how long you want the icon to ‘’grow’’ in the timeline by dragging the darker part in the beginning or end of the line backwards or forward depending on elongating the growing or shrinking of the icon.

What are you waiting for? 

Mapcreator’s new icon-on-line animation feature is live now! From news reporting to travel journals and various transportation visualizations, the possibilities are extensive. By seamlessly integrating icons with animated lines, users are empowered to tell captivating stories through dynamic and visually stunning maps. Dive into this innovative feature and elevate your map creation experience!