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ICAD Group Supporting Needle Analytics' Cartography Contest

Working with Raygun and JPEC to Create New Iowa Maps

The Iowa City Area Development (ICAD) Group is supporting a grassroots effort lead by Iowa City startup Needle Analytics to create new state maps that capture and graphically represent the local perception of the state. Submissions will be accepted through June 1 and the top three designs will be printed on posters and sold at Raygun in Iowa City.

“We wanted to get behind this effort to further explore and capture how our community and state views its strengths and assets,” said Mark Nolte, ICAD Group President. “Building local pride can only help strengthen the fiber of our area, which is reflected in our workforce, entrepreneurs and existing industry.”

Local business owners, Riley Gardam and Jacob Langenfeld, started Needle Analytics last May, shortly after their creation of The Bloom Index. The Bloom Index was a map that quantified Stephen Bloom’s blunt representation of Iowa in an article in The Atlantic. Since that creation, these two University of Iowa graduates have built a company that relays relevant and complex data in ways that are easy to process and understand, including maps.

According to Gardam, the idea for the event stems from their belief that cartography is an artistic undertaking. “We began playing with the idea of what kinds of meaning these Iowa places have for locals and how that might look in a map,” said Gardam. “This contest celebrates our first anniversary as well as our belief in mapping as an art form.”

Gardam says her team and Raygun representatives will select six semi-finalists who will each receive a $50 honorarium. From there, the top three entries will be printed on posters and sold in the Iowa City Raygun store Friday, July 5 and Saturday, July 6.

“The top three designers will receive half of the profits from the poster sales,” added Gardam. “We look forward to recognizing their work as part of our one year celebration.”

A reception to celebrate the winning designs, as well as Needle Analytics' first anniversary, will be held at the Iowa City Raygun store, 103 East College Street, on Friday, July 5 from 4:30 p.m. to 6:30 p.m. with refreshments provided.

Details regarding the rules and submission requirements can be found at the website, needleanalytics.net/contentcontest.htm. Event sponsors include Raygun, the UI John Pappajohn Entrepreneurial Center (JPEC), and the Iowa City Area Development Group.

For More Information:

Needle Analytics, (515) 249-2545 or info@needleanalytics.net


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