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Map Engine

Creating beautiful maps from multi-jurisdictional data


Map Engine is the result of a partnership between Theory and Principle and legal tech innovation company Sente Advisors. Law firms often need to compile multi-jurisdictional or state survey data, but sharing those results previously meant using hard to digest spreadsheets or expensive, complicated map creation tools. Users needed a quick and easy way to make these surveys more visual to share with clients and beyond.

The Product

Map Engine allows users to easily upload a spreadsheet containing jurisdictional data and instantly generate a beautiful interactive map visualization. One of the core principles of the product was to reduce the steps required to convert the data they already had–in this case Excel based spreadsheets–into a custom map visual. Users add some simple categorization column headers in the spreadsheet, upload the file to Map Engine and get a custom, interactive, shareable map within seconds.

Map Engine is available for purchase on a subscription basis at

“Map Engine has enabled our attorneys to transform complex jurisdictional legal data into easy-to-consume, interactive visualizations for clients. The platform is easy to use and optimized for the user experience. It has empowered our front-line knowledge workers to quickly turn data into actionable intelligence.”
–Ali Shahidi, Sheppard Mullin Richter & Hampton LLP
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How did we get there?

Following interviews with a variety of law firms and knowledge management users, we developed a clear understanding of the types of maps they were looking to create and the format in which that underlying data was being collected. We then created some high-fidelity design mock-ups of the finished map to help guide the development effort.

As we built the initial functionality into the prototype and shared it internally with the team, we quickly added features and functions to ensure users would be able to customize the map to their liking. Once we had a good subset of the early features needed, we launched a beta test with actual law firm users to ensure the product was meeting their needs.

Following the feedback from users and discussions within the broader team, we finalized on a finished set of features including a basic front end UI to enable things like rearranging the legend order, or the ability to download or reupload updated excel files when data changes. After ample internal review and QA testing, we finally released the Map Engine V1.0 to the market.

We will continue to gather feedback from users, see how they’re using the product, and define new features as we look forward to new releases.