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#48418 Overpass Turbo

Posted by Daniel Huffman on 28 January 2015 - 05:43 PM

I wanted to share what has proven to be a very valuable resource for data, which comes to me via Sam Matthews (mapsam.com): Overpass Turbo — http://overpass-turbo.eu/


It can look a bit intimidating, but it's pretty easy to work with. Go click the "Wizard" button, and then type in a query like "highway = trunk." It will grab the data and show every major highway on the map on the right. It pulls data for whatever area you've got shown on the right-side map. To download, click "Export"


Today, I needed all the major roads in a county. Normally, I can find a government dataset that either has a) every single road ever, or b) just the main highways. I needed something in-between those, and all I had to do was go to Overpass Turbo, and in the wizard do a query of "highway = motorway OR highway = trunk OR highway = primary" and it pulled the top 3 levels of roads for me. I downloaded them, kicked them in to Arc, and I'm on my way to my map. No need to sort through TIGER data picking out the roads I want.


You can make use of more than just roads data. Anything OSM has can be grabbed. Consult the handy feature list for stuff you can download: http://wiki.openstre...ki/Map_Features


Pretty handy stuff. If you want to get fancy, you can access the Overpass API with your own scripts, but if you don't know anything about scripting, or just don't care to make one, Overpass Turbo makes it easy to just look around and download what you want.

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#47817 Boring Cartographers Map Bland and Dull

Posted by Matthew Hampton on 15 August 2014 - 09:59 PM

BORING, Oregon, August 9th, 2014 -- Just in time to commemorate Boring and Dull Day on August 9th, a new piece of local artwork is available to the public.  Two card-carrying NACIS members from Boring, Oregon, have created an illustration showcasing the unusual alliance between three communities around the world who have unstimulating names. The thrilling threesome between Bland, Dull, and Boring has formed the League of Extraordinary Communities and the artwork contains detailed maps and factual information on each community, as well as a timeline detailing the development of this tedious triangle.  Local residents took advantage of purchasing the poster in person at the Boring and Dull Day community social at Boring Station Trailhead Park from 5-9 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 9, where cartographers, Matthew Hampton and Erica McCormick, staffed a pop-up map shop for boringmaps.com.  The nicely styled print “is a fine addition to any Boring home, in addition to Dull and Bland ones, not to mention any wearisome wall around the world,” Hampton said.


It all started with a bike ride.  A Scottish woman was cycling through Oregon and saw a sign for the town of Boring, reminding her of a town she lived near: Dull.  Soon, the Dull Women’s Book Club was informed and before long, the Councils of Dull and Boring were rolling up their sleeves.  From their enthused camaraderie, the Pair for the Ages was born, twinning Dull and Boring for all time.  International interest was piqued and a chord was struck in the outback.  The Shire of Bland, in New South Wales, Australia, was no stranger to the tired jokes Dull and Boring endure, and a kinship was formed.  Together, these three rural locales now comprise the League of Extraordinary Communities.  They were on the world’s mental map, but two particular Boring residents following the developments of the economic tourist partnership happened to be mapmakers and knew something must be done.  Hampton and McCormick met over a Boring Brewing beer and decided to tackle the project as a way to honor the trio and provide the finest crafted cartographic creation this tedious triad has seen.

“What intrigued us was the similarities between these three rural places around the globe and the cartographic challenge that one is a shire, one is a parish, and one is a community,” McCormick said.  They worked with local businesses and organizations throughout the process and chose a thick pearlized paper, rich ink, and a high quality design.  The result is a piece of art that is far from dull and bland.

The poster is frame-worthy so Hampton and McCormick hope folks will be proud to hang it in their homes and to offer as gifts for friends.  The Boring duo plans to expand the brand with related merchandise in the future and hopes that other mundane-monikered communities will join the League, which is why it was formed.  More information about their work, the Pair for the Ages, and the League of Extraordinary Communities is available at www.boringmaps.com.

“It was really exciting to interview our Dull friends and to be on the phone with Bland folks” McCormick explains. “The international nature of the project made it very rewarding.”  The League was formed to encourage tourism and will use the slogan “We’re Bland, Dull, and Boring, so come visit.”  Hampton and McCormick think everyone's journey to Bland, Dull, and Boring ought to start with a good set of maps.


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#46941 Wall map of Colorado's Terrain - plan oblique relief with landcover

Posted by jdvarner on 07 December 2013 - 04:49 PM

I've been working on a new wall map of Colorado (41 by 31 inches) that shows the terrain in plan oblique relief, combined with landcover coloration, with labels for all the major landscape features, towns, ski areas, etc.

I used Natural Scene Designer to render the plan oblique relief. I'm also experimenting with Patrick Kennelly's hillshading techniques using sky models: https://speakerdeck....terrain-metrics, which makes for a nice effect -- I like how it accentuates the shadows in deep canyons.


I showed an earlier version of this map (which used hypsometric tinting instead of landcover) at the NACIS poster gallery in Greenville.


Please let me know what you think! Is this relief portrayal effective? I'm trying to make the terrain easily interpret-able, with an immediately recognizable "3D" effect. What do you think about the label density, especially in somewhat crowded areas like the Front Range? Any feedback would be greatly appreciated!




Attached Thumbnails

  • fullmap.jpg
  • denver.jpg
  • sanluisvalley.jpg
  • legend.jpg
  • elks_sawatch.jpg

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#46797 The Appalaichian Trail

Posted by Rosemary D on 24 October 2013 - 02:16 PM

Hi Everyone,


Here is the Appalachian Trail map recently made at National Geographic Maps which we displayed in the Map Gallery at this year's Annual Meeting. We had a lot of fun making this map, it's a bit of a hybrid between our classic political reference map and a more physical styled map, and we had a great time getting some feedback from all the cartographers at NACIS. We hope to carry this style of map out to the other great trail systems across the U.S., and possibly the world!



Attached Thumbnails

  • Appalachian_Trail.jpg

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#46781 Memory Roots: A Traveler's History

Posted by bswanson on 21 October 2013 - 09:20 PM

Thanks for the opportunity to post my map on Cartotalk! This map won second place at the NACIS Meeting in Greenville. Just click the map to view the full image. Note that it is a PNG and it is 2.6 MB in size.


This map documents my personal travels from my home base in Minneapolis to various locations around the country.



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#48384 It's good to be a cartographer

Posted by P.Raposo on 22 January 2015 - 09:46 PM

A suitably pleasant degree of pride and satisfaction, as well as welcome measures of appreciation and admiration from peers in other disciplines, is conferred upon those who labor to produce assemblages of graphic variables that mimic the spatial distribution of landscapes.  ;)

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#48368 Manual Shaded Relief of the World

Posted by Tom Patterson on 19 January 2015 - 07:45 AM

Hi Everyone,


A generalized shaded relief that I drew over the holidays is now on the Natural Earth website. You can read about the making of this product at the link below.





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#48279 Topographic map of Norway

Posted by Agnar Renolen on 20 December 2014 - 05:31 PM

Here is a wall map I have created of my home country, Norway with the Svalbard islands inset.




This image also features an enlargement inset for you to see the details (not on the real map).


A notable feature of this map is the use of the Krovak map projection for the main land (I used a transverse Mercator for Svalbard).

Krovak is a map projection well adapted for banana-shaped countries like Norway and Chekoslovakia (the latter for which the map projection was originally designed for)






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#48255 Standard colour ramp to represent elevation

Posted by Tom Patterson on 13 December 2014 - 06:06 PM

Cartographers have used many color schemes over the decades to depict elevation. Figure 2 in the article linked below shows some of them.




The Development and Rationale of Cross-blended Hypsometric Tints

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#48232 It's good to be a cartographer

Posted by Matthew Hampton on 08 December 2014 - 06:22 PM

I would go so far as to say that it's "recommended" to be a cartographer.

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#48222 It's good to be a cartographer

Posted by Hans van der Maarel on 04 December 2014 - 03:31 AM

It's cool to be a cartographer!

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#48186 Ship Sinkings in the Second World War

Posted by rudy on 25 November 2014 - 09:18 PM

Hello fellow cartographers -


Aside from my paid work as a cartographer, I also like to engage in cartographic projects of my own interest. In the past year I have been creating and verifying a list of all the ships sunk in the Second World War. This, of course, turned out to be a larger project than I initially anticipated as I forged ahead with my research and data gathering I came across a wide range of sources, some more reliable than others (Wikipedia is, not surprisingly, not the most reliable!). So, in this past year, I've managed to compile a list of about 3,900 ships sunk as part of the war (i.e. not including accidents) during the first 2 years alone (September 1939 through to the end of August, 1941). Of these, I've manged to find geographic coordinates for about 3,000 of them. So, this is what they look like on the map so far:


The map is not how the finished product will. My plan is to set up an interactive, time-enabled web mapping site in order to display all of this wonderful information. At this point, it is all an incomplete work in progress.


Comments, suggestions, etc. are welcome. I thought if there'd be any audience that would appreciate this, it would be you folks.

Attached Thumbnails

  • Ships Sunk 1939-1941.JPG

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#48094 Adding Shaded Relief in Photoshop

Posted by Daniel Huffman on 26 October 2014 - 08:37 PM

Hi all,


I've recently put together another video tutorial. This time, it's on how I use Photoshop to combine a shaded relief with other map layers (such as hypsometric tints). I get requests, from time to time, to show this to colleagues, so I figured I'd make a video. Comments are welcome.


Blog post + video here: http://wp.me/psOyY-mW.

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#47839 Seeking feedback about maps in my portfolio.

Posted by Bogdanovits on 20 August 2014 - 08:53 PM

Hi Arunava,


I like your maps. Great skill of balance when you are using colours, lines and content.

I think only one important think is missing from your webpage. :-)

Under "About me" you should write: "I am a Cartographer" too because what you are doing is 100% pure Cartography.

Congratulations to your portfolio.




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#47837 Seeking feedback about maps in my portfolio.

Posted by thelastray on 20 August 2014 - 09:39 AM

Hello All,


I am Arunava Dey from Kolkata India. I have launched my own website - a map maker's portfolio http://www.cartoskill.com.


I would like get your feedback on its contents/ maps, specifically for the following:

1. http://www.cartoskill.com/co2gdp.html

I am not sure how to add map legend for a cartogram.


2. http://www.cartoskil.../worldcity.html


Thanking you,


Arunava Dey

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#47792 NYT scrolling story map of ISIS expansion in Iraq & Syria

Posted by David Medeiros on 12 August 2014 - 10:51 AM

Interesting map based story on the expansion of Isis. Uses the geography of the Tigris and Euphrates rivers to tell the story:




Similar to their Snow Fall story but more map based. My only major criticism is the use of an full detail river layer for their header graphic. The rivers and lakes could have been simplified quite a bit I think. The rest of it looks pretty good, could use a but more emphasis on the locations in the scrolling image maybe.

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#47771 Proving the benefits of generalization

Posted by David Medeiros on 30 July 2014 - 03:55 PM

I think your example is a bit more complex than typical in that you are not only talking about a change in detail, but in mode as well (detailed polygon to simplified line).


And it may be that the scale is such that the change is not warranted (this may be what Gretchen is alluding to).


A good example for looking at what happens to detailed data at small scales and how aggregating and simplifying effect the reading of data could be something like BLM land holdings. The patterns are such that at small scale it can be difficult to clearly read the data unless the checkerboard pattern is generalized in some way.


I guess this brings up the question of what exactly are we talking about when we say "simplification"? Generalization, simplification, and abstraction are not the same things here (to me anyway).


There's removing detail (extra nodes) but preserving the overall shape and complexity of the feature shapes as well as the number of features, what I think of as simplification.


Removing complexity in the feature shapes (smoothing lines, reducing the number of bends in a river or boarder, aggregating smaller features into larger representations, or removing extra features etc.), what I'd call generalizing.


Abstraction could be a much more dramatic change in representation where the displayed shape may have very little of the original feature shape in it but suggests the feature through symbols. This can involve simplification and generalization but probably goes much further.


And then there is classification which can be thought of as a method for simplifying data, but probably doesn't fit directly into what we are talking about here.


We also can't forget that scale is not the only variable here, map purpose plays a significant role as well. So your simplified river line may not be suitable for a hydrology map at 1:50,000 but could be preferable for a hwy map at the same scale.

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#47712 Weir Farm 3D oblique map

Posted by David Medeiros on 07 July 2014 - 05:53 PM

I had the chance to see a little of how Vue works recently here at the Spatial History Project and it looks impressive. NSD on steroids in some ways. As detailed as this scene is it seems that Vue can certainly go a lot further if needed.


That got me thinking about these kinds of 'realistic' scene renderings and how far will we go with them before it becomes simpler to take an oblique picture?  There must be a significant amount of work put into an image like this in terms of creating models, textures, retouching the DEM, setting the layout etc.  The result is very realistic but just abstracted enough to still be much easier to read then a photo, but it's approaching the point at which instead of adding realism we will need to start taking it away in order to maintain the benefit of a representation over reality.

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#47573 Mountain Cartography Workshop Maps

Posted by Tom Patterson on 21 May 2014 - 07:35 PM

The maps that I introduced last month at the ICA Mountain Cartography Workshop in Banff are now available online in screen-viewable and print versions. One map is of Canyonlands National Park, Utah, and the other is of Glacier National Park, Montana. They both feature rock textures rendered with Texture Terrain Shader software. Working on these was a lot of fun.





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#47532 My first Story Map

Posted by Matthew Hampton on 12 May 2014 - 03:08 PM

With a stash of de-collared and rectified GLO maps I created this Spyglass into the 1852 PLSS Survey of Portlandusing ESRI's new Story Maps.  


Kudos to their team for making it so easy to create a responsive web-map.  It reminded me of this post on the forums from 5 years ago.

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