7. On the Surface

  1. Daniel Dorling

Published Online: 5 JUL 2012

DOI: 10.1002/9781118353929.ch7

The Visualization of Spatial Social Structure

The Visualization of Spatial Social Structure

How to Cite

Dorling, D. (2012) On the Surface, in The Visualization of Spatial Social Structure, John Wiley & Sons, Ltd, Chichester, UK. doi: 10.1002/9781118353929.ch7

Author Information

  1. Department of Geography, University of Sheffield, UK

Publication History

  1. Published Online: 5 JUL 2012
  2. Published Print: 3 AUG 2012

ISBN Information

Print ISBN: 9781119962939

Online ISBN: 9781118353929



  • Britain;
  • County Council Elections;
  • English Voting Composition;
  • graphing;
  • surface;
  • surface geometry;
  • surface value


The surface of an object is the boundary, edge or limit of a shape. It exists in, and encloses, a dimension one order above its own. It contains and defines an object, while expressing form itself. This chapter focuses on surfaces that are mostly two-dimensional areas in three-dimensional space. It also considers another form of surface, one-dimensional lines, straight and curved, traversing and enclosing two-dimensional space, more commonly referred to as graphs. Graphs show the relationships between two dimensions. Visual improvement in graphing is achieved by transforming the axes more generally. The chapter presents images depicting the 1985 County Council Elections in Britain. Some of these images highlight the surface showing the change in the English voting composition. The chapter concludes with a discussion on travel time surface and surface value.

Controlled Vocabulary Terms

Charts and graphs; Statistical shape analysis