Maps of Home tells the story of growing up and going back. This theme may be relatable to many readers, as COVID-19 led to many relocations and returns. In the piece, author Dylan Moriarty reminisces on the nearly two decades he spent growing up in Janesville, Wisconsin.
He later moved to New York, returning to the Midwest mostly for "holiday pop-ins" in the years that followed. A family member's illness caused Moriarty to return to Wisconsin for a longer period of time, and he decided to reflect on his homecoming in this data visualization. The nostalgic prose and engaging visuals make the piece a sweet read, culminating in a memorable line: "It is enthralling realizing that for each of those folk, this lil' dot [referring to map coordinates] blows out to a whole other story." To add an audio element to the piece, users will want to click the "Hover for Companion tunes" button in the right corner. This will initiate a fitting playlist, beginning with the song "Home Again" by Michael Kiwanuka. Maps of Home was created with Mapbox and OpenStreetMap data. Readers who enjoyed this piece may wish to explore the other posts on Moriarty's blog, Moriarty Naps.