I have some data that encodes locations in certain countries, such as the US and China, that I would like to map. The data includes location name in Latin, extended Latin and other scripts (Japanese, Thai etc), location latitude, location longitude and some categories.
Ultimately I would like to be able to show this data on a map with administrative boundaries (roughly state/province level) and/or conurbation overlay. Likely output would be colour PNG images for use on the web.
I thought about using R (my main tool for data manipulation) to do a trial run with some of the US data but immediately stepped into a welter of jargon concerning shapefiles, attributes and the problem of trying to make a decision at least 3 different GIS packages for R. There are so many tools and moving parts out there that I am having difficulty seeing the forest for the trees.
Q. Can anybody provide a brief step-by-step summary (or a minimal example) of how I should go about mapping such data using R and some qualitative feedback on which R tools would be the most suited to me needs?
An example of my data, expressed in R code, would look something like this:
locname <- ("Shanghai Stock Exchange") loclocalname <- c("上海证券交易所") lat <- c(31.236259) long <- c(121.511299) mydf <- data.frame(locname, loclocalname, lat, long) mydf$latlong <- paste(mydf$lat, mydf$long, sep = ",") str(mydf)