Cartographic Resources 2012
- Last Updated on Monday, 03 June 2013 03:24
Mapbox.com – openstreetmaps
MapBox Streets is powered by high-quality open data from OpenStreetMap, available now from MapBox. Liberate your maps with global street level detail, rich features, and your own custom design.
Quantum GIS (QGIS) is a user friendly Open Source Geographic Information System (GIS) licensed under the GNU General Public License. QGIS is an official project of the Open Source Geospatial Foundation (OSGeo). It runs on Linux, Unix, Mac OSX, Windows and Android and supports numerous vector, raster, and database formats and functionalities.
TileMill is an application for making beautiful maps. Whether you're a journalist, web designer, researcher, or seasoned cartographer, TileMill is the design studio you need to create compelling, interactive maps.
Mapnik is a Free Toolkit for developing mapping applications. Above all Mapnik is about making beautiful maps. It is easily extensible and suitable for both desktop and web development.
ScaleMaster is a structured diagram for organizing multi-scale mapping using multiple databases and design, selection, and generalization decisions.
In its rudimentary form, ScaleMaster is a do-it-yourself Excel file available for download (19. below). Other resources are listed and linked as we continue to develop the idea.
Every human perceives urban space differently. Some places are seen to be unsafe, others as especially beautiful. This perception is subjective and emotions of the person influence it. For the project EmoMap we will enable an online community to collect that kind of data and store it in an open database. This database can be accessed and used by anyone to enhance the quality of future products and services, e.g. navigation systems for pedestrians.
A new platform for storing and exchanging data which are location and time-sensitive, making them accessible to users through mobile devices, web interfaces and physical interface objects. This platform enables people to become distributed intelligent actuators, which pursue their individual interests in cooperation and competition with others, and thus become prime actors themselves in improving the efficiency of urban systems.
How can we get our map colours right? How open journalism helped us get better
How good are we at choosing colour palettes for maps on the Datablog?
What happened when our users showed us how to do it
Maps of many different colours. But which one is best?
How can you get the colour scales right on maps?
(At this site) is a Storify showing how the conversation evolved - to create a better map.
Free GIS Software - QGIS 1.7.4
Quantum GIS (QGIS) is a user friendly Open Source Geographic Information System (GIS) licensed under the GNU General Public License. QGIS is an official project of the Open Source Geospatial Foundation (OSGeo). It runs on Linux, Unix, Mac OSX, and Windows and supports numerous vector, raster, and database formats and functionalities.
Map Maker Pro desktop mapping
The foundation of the system is the free GIS, Map Maker Gratis. If your mapping needs are basic simply use Map Maker Gratis for free.
ESRI Free Mapping Software
Easily visualize and share spatial information.
- ArcGIS Explorer Online—Do queries, create dashboards, and author presentations.
- ArcGIS Online for Personal Use—Create and share maps everywhere.
- ArcGIS Explorer Desktop—Combine your local data with online spatial information.
- ArcGIS for AutoCAD—Access ArcGIS map services within AutoCAD and prepare CAD data for use in ArcGIS.
- ArcReader—View high-quality interactive maps authored in ArcGIS for Desktop and published with the ArcGIS Publisher extension.
- ArcGIS for Smartphones and Tablets—Navigate maps, collect and report data, and perform GIS analysis from your smartphone or tablet device.
MapSphere is a mapping software for Windows that:
- downloads maps and satellite images from different sources
(OpenStreetMap, Terraserver, LandSat, and others)
- stores all the mapping data on the hard drive for offline use
- represents the map in 2D and 3D modes
- supports GPS-receivers to track your current position
- displays the location of other users and their GPS tracks
- provides a chat to discuss your travels
- geo-references your photos according to your track
and uploads them to your personal trip page
- shows tracks, photos, and chat messages on the map
- supports geocaching
- supports an easy-to-use iPad viewer
Delivering online mapping tools and information, this interactive service allows you to download Australian maps and data for FREE. MapConnect is useful to professionals or students working with spatial data. The general public is welcome to use this resource, but should note that some aspects of MapConnect are specialised. About MapConnect
MapConnect categorises data in five themes:
- 250K - 1:250 000 scale topographic map data
- GlobalMap - 1:1 million scale topographic map data
- Geology - 1:1 million and 1:2.5 million scale geological map data
- Groundwater - Groundwater themed datasets
- geoMAP - Create a quality PDF map
MapConnect is a FREE service, some of the data can be downloaded using the interactive map selection process.
A4 Report Map of Australia
Catalogue Number :
Release Date :
20 October 2010
Product Type :
1:20 000 000
WEB + PRINT
Free download available at:
Digital Topographic Data
Map data for use in Geographic Information System (GIS) applications is available in varying scales. It is free to download or can be purchased on digital media.
The topographic data is available for use in GIS applications, in the following scales which reflect their level of accuracy and best scale for use. The smaller the scale (i.e. 1:250 000 is a smaller scale than 1:100 000), the fewer features are depicted in the data and naturally they will be less spatially accurate. Geodata is vector data.
- 1:100 000: At this scale 1cm is equal to 1km. This is the largest scale data provided and is particularly suited for land management and planning applications. Data quality and reliability varies at this scale.
- 1:250 000: At this scale 1cm is equal to 2.5km. The data has been prepared to provide high quality base information for mapping and GIS professionals as it provides a detailed overview over a large area.
- 1:1 million: At this scale 1cm is equal to 10km. This data covers the Australian landmass and its island territories and was created by generalising our 1:250 000 topographic data.
- 1:2.5 million: At this scale 1cm is equal to 25km. This data is a vector representation of the 1:2.5 million scale general reference map and is suited to regional, state-wide or national applications.
- 1:5 million: At this scale 1cm is equal to 50km. This data is a vector representation of the 1:5 million scale general reference map and is suited to larger regional, state-wide or national application.
- 1:10 million: At this scale 1cm is equal to 100km. This data has been derived mainly from 1:250 000 topographic data and is suited to state-wide or national applications.
by Morten 5. May 2007 21:44
People are often mixing the above as if they were one and the same, so here’s a recap of them. One of the things you often find people saying is that “my data is in the WGS84 coordinate system”. This doesn’t really make sense, but I will get back to this later.
This is a very confusing subject, and I might have gotten a few things wrong myself, so please add a comment and I’ll update it ASAP.
A coordinate system is ……………………………………………..
Datums and ellipsoids
Some of the common properties of the above coordinate systems are that they are all relative to the center of Earth and except the Geocentric coordinate system, uses a height system relative to the surface of the earth.
This poses two immediate problems:
- Where is the center of the earth
- What is the shape of the earth?
The earth isn’t flat, and there is no simple way of putting it down on a flat paper map (or these days onto a computer screen), so people have come up with all sorts of ingenious solutions …………………………………………………..
The spatial reference is a …………………………………….
MAPS – HISTORY
Map expert Professor Jerry Brotton uncovers how maps aren't simply about getting from A to B, but are revealing snapshots of defining moments in history and tools of political power and persuasion
New book – Maps for the Future
More information at:
eBook on "Advanced Geo-Simulation Models"
Geosimulation has recently emerged at the intersection of Geographic Information Science, Complex Systems Theory and Computer Science. Geosimulation aims at understanding the dynamics of complex human-driven spatial systems through the use of spatially explicit computer simulation. The approaches and tools for validating Geosimulation models are especially important for understanding their complex and spatially heterogeneous outcomes. The Ebook presents the recent conceptual and methodological advances achieved in the field.
Evacuation Trace Mini Challenge Award: Tool Integration
Analysis of Movements with Geospatial Visual Analytics Toolkit
Natalia Andrienko, Gennady Andrienko
Fraunhofer Institute IAIS (Intelligent Analysis and Information Systems), Sankt Augustin, Germany
The Geospatial Visual Analytics Toolkit intended for exploratory analysis of spatial and spatio-temporal data has been recently enriched with specific visual and computational techniques supporting analysis of data about movement. We applied these and other techniques to the data and tasks of Mini Challenge 4, where it was necessary to analyze tracks of moving people.
Visualizing Time Series Data Using Web Map Service Time Dimension and SVG Interactive Animation,
by Timothee Becker.
The Gauss–Krueger Projection:
R. E. Deakin1, M. N. Hunter2 and C. F. F. Karney3
The Gauss-Krueger projection has two forms. One has the Karney-Krueger equations capable of micrometre accuracy anywhere within 30° of a central meridian of longitude. The other has equations limited to millimetre accuracy within 6° of a central meridian. These latter equations are complicated but are widely used. The former equations are simple, easily adapted to computers, but not in wide use. This paper gives a complete development of the Karney-Krueger equations.
Cartographic Enhanced Geoportals
TOOMANIAN A., HARRIE L., OLSSON P.O.
GIS Centre, Dept of Earth and Ecosystem Sciences, Lund University, LUND, SWEDEN
The demand for web based spatial data applications are increasing rapidly. A wide area of web based applications, initiated the requirement to disseminate spatial data to the end-users by the use of geoportals. They support searching, viewing and downloading spatial data.
Restoring Blaeu’s Globes by Modern Methods
MÁRTON M.(1), PLIHÁL K.(2), UNGVÁRI Z.(1)
(1) Eötvös Loránd University, BUDAPEST, HUNGARY ; (2) National Széchényi Library, BUDAPEST,
The famous Dutch Blaeu dynasty produced globes in the seventeenth century, which we can find all over Europe. In the Museum of the Zirc Abbey, there is a 68 cm diameter earth globe and its celestial pair too. These globes were in very poor state, so they had to be restored in 2008. After the restoration, we can see the globes in their original state in the Museum. Unfortunately, not every people can visit this museum. This is why the Department of Cartography and Geoinformatics at Eötvös Loránd University decided to take a photo series of the surface of the globes, and publish the globes on the Internet as virtual globes
(Virtual Globes Museum: http://vgm.elte.hu).
Examples of Spatial Humanities Projects
Published: July 26, 2011
Historians, literary theorists, archeologists and other academics are using advanced technology to establish a novel field that they are tentatively calling “spatial humanities.” These scholars use software that can display and analyze information related to a physical location to re-examine real or fictional places in new ways.
Best of the Blogs
Hot news this morning is Apple’s departure from Google Maps in iOS 6, instead moving to their own in-house mapping application, created from acquisitions of several mapping companies in recent years. AnyGeo has a great overview, including data partners.
Apple have also now posted a video showing the new maps application in action.
Further to this, James Fee from Spatially Adjusted asks “Will Apple maps impact web mapping?” And interesting post worth a read by any GIS developers out there.
Google Maps Mania highlight a crowd-sourced map of “the global transition to a new economy.” A new economy is one that "maximizes well-being, operates within environmental limits and is capable of coping and adapting to global environmental change".
For any Doctor Who lovers out there, Retronaut has pulled together various historical photographs of the Doctor’s many travels through time and space, and, using StreetView, has placed them in their current context.
GIS Lounge have a post all about some of history’s most notable cartographers and their maps. Some truly beautiful maps here.
O’Reilly Radar’s visualisation of the week last week was a time-lapse movie map that shows global Bit Torrent usage, made by the creators of the file-transfer protocol. It’s a great example of a way to display time-series data in an attractive and engaging way.
LiDAR News has a post talking about the way that LiDAR was used to assess the damage after the Japan earthquake and tsunami. “The idea is that it’s a virtual world you can explore without being physically present in that dangerous environment. You can move through it in the software.”
How will real-time inputs, and the increasing number of sensors, impact the geospatial industry?
For decades the lack of geospatial data was a barrier to geographic information system expansion and adoption. While obtaining high-quality spatial data continues to be a challenge, the problems of a lack of available data has quickly turned into the need to manage a glut of information.
Discovering the Next Dimension: How LiDAR Data is Changing the Geospatial Workflow
Today, geospatial data is used in critical decision making across industries and applications – from disaster response to defense and intelligence and natural resource management. When using geospatial data to make critical decisions, it is increasingly important to understand an area of interest from all angles in order to make the most informed decisions possible.
A Data Commons for Spatio-Temporal Knowledge About Our World
Now that we’ve achieved near global digital spatial data coverage, with a number of online tools to explore the world, it’s time to add to that data with further understanding.
Coordinates is a monthly magazine on positioning, navigation and associated technologies. It aims to broaden the canvas of the technology by taking it from the domain of experts to the realm of potential users.
Coordinates is published by Centre for Geo-Information Technologies (cGIT), a Non Government Organisation (NGO) based in Delhi, India
The Wind Rose
Pat Shingleton for June 15, 2012
June 15, 2012
The “wind rose” is a circular directional emblem found on vintage maps and charts. As noted previously, it evolved from the four primary wind directions arranged around a circle that represented the horizon. In the 16th century, cartographers expressed their most imaginative work within the rose, incorporating brilliant colors with gold- and silver-laced trims. Possibly through some means of uniformity, principal winds, half-winds and quarter-winds were done in various colors. Fifteenth-century Italian cartographers used gold, green and red hues for their winds. Cherubs were added, blowing the principal winds from their mouths, accompanied by wild animals. Where the compass and GPS set our course today, the wind rose was the primitive directional indicator on navigational charts. More Saturday. Fastcast: Sticky.
How satnav maps are made
Posted on 22 Jun 2012 at 15:15
Jonathan Bray reveals how the maps are created for the world's biggest satnav firms - and whether they have a future at all
When a lorry driver wedged his 13-tonne truck between a house and an estate agent in Somerset recently, the media was quick to point the finger of blame at a familiar culprit – the 6in screen sitting on his dashboard.
Flawed satnav instructions are the scapegoat for ridiculous round-trips, buses wedged under bridges, and ambulances taking life-threatening diversions. But few understand or appreciate how far mapping companies go to ensure the accuracy of the data they’re providing.
And, of course, we rarely hear of the millions of gallons of petrol saved or countless hours of business productivity recouped by the millions of satnav users who shave 10 or 20 minutes off their journey times every day.
In this feature, we’ll reveal the extraordinary efforts companies make to create and update their maps, and continually verify their accuracy, as well as sparing drivers from hours of sitting in traffic jams with the use of real-time data. We’ll also show just how much maps can differ from one provider to another.
Acquisition Guide for GIS Hardware and Software
Guide discusses the acquisition of GIS hardware and software, GIS system integration, GIS application development, and GIS use and maintenance. Also covered is evaluation of proposals and a delivery and installation plan as well as hardware, software, and network and communications specifications. Guide is available for download by clicking here.
GPS technology improves weather forecasting
14 June 2012
RMIT researchers are helping make weather forecasting more accurate. Image © iStockphoto.
The satellite-based global positioning system technology that guides modern in-car navigation systems is now being used to improve weather forecasts.
Researchers at RMIT University's SPACE Research Centre and the Bureau of Meteorology are using GPS and low earth orbit satellites to provide an additional type of temperature profile observation for use in weather forecasting computer models.
The computer models draw on about a hundred thousand million current weather observations, including data from 30 to 40 complementary satellite instruments, to generate the information used by meteorologists to prepare weather forecasts
RMIT Adjunct Professor John Le Marshall is Research Program leader at the Bureau of Meteorology and former Inaugural Director of the Joint Center for Satellite Data Assimilation, a joint NOAA, NASA and DOD research initiative in Washington.
He said: "What we've found through our work with RMIT's SPACE research team is that the GPS data improves the real-time temperature field and the cross-calibration of the data from a number of satellite instruments.
"This in turn significantly increases the usable quality of the satellite observations.
The Next Generation of Maps
Thursday, June 21, 2012 at 11:00 AM
Maps you can move in. Big, deep, 3D changes coming to the world of digital cartography.
Itsukushima Shinto Shrine, Japan. (Google Maps)
In the zone
Using geocoding technology can help bring customers to businesses by simplifying and speeding up the use of maps on websites.
Geocoding technology is being used by businesses which have maps on their websites
Date: 20 June 2012
Geocoding is a technology that translates an address or postcode into geographical coordinates. It is being used by businesses which have maps on their websites to give customers quicker access to details of local services.