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#1
Hans van der Maarel

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I bet you all get asked the same standard questions as I do when you explain to people what it is that you do for a living...

"But aren't all maps already made?" is a good one. "So you always know where to go then?" is another one that frequently comes by (Yes, of course... dump me in a strange town and watch how I miraculously find my way out of it... then again, give me a map and *really* watch how I miraculously find my way out of it).

I came across a true gem last week, while on vacation. I was talking to a friend of the friend I was visiting and she said: "When I heard you were a cartographer, I first thought you took pictures of cars"

:blink:
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#2
Nick Springer

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Yeah, my wife drives me nuts when ever I make a wrong turn in the car with "I thought you were are cartographer...Don't you make maps for a living..."

...because I have every map of everywhere, ever made commited to memory.

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#3
Rick Dey

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Several times over the years we've had someone call the Cartography Department and want to talk to a "Heart Doctor" As a result internally we've occasionally referred to ourselves as the Cardiology Dept.
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#4
vandalmax

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You're right on Hans, the first question I usually get is "Isn't everything already mapped?"

When my friends are going at me they start singing "Mapmaker, mapmaker, make me a map..."

#5
Hans van der Maarel

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I prefer "da-da da-da da-da da-da Mapman!", sung to the Batman theme. At least that has *style* B)

I gotta say though, not very many people know what I do when I say 'cartographer'. OR 'GIS' for that matter.
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#6
vandalmax

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When people ask me what I do I have two standard responses: "I'm a cartographer", or "I make maps". It's usually a judgement call on whether or not I think they've heard of a cartographer.

I quit trying to explain GIS a couple of years ago. I decided it was just easier to explain cartography.

#7
ELeFevre

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I quit trying to explain GIS a couple of years ago.

Yeah, me too. More often that not, explaining GIS to a person who has never heard of it before leads only to more confusion. Most of my family and friends have no idea what I do...
Basically the best approach is to leave it at, "I work with computers...." and they respond with "Computers, that's a great field." Easy enough.



#8
MapMedia

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Though I would rather talk about cartography, I usually tell folks I do both map making and GIS - true enough - then describe GIS in terms of environmental risk management etc., wildlife habitat mapping, and the lights go on.

I wish I had a custard pie with lots of whipped cream handy whenever I hear 'Aren't all the maps already made?' - and respond like this: "Good question. And now its pie in the face time for you!"

#9
David T

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Several times over the years we've had someone call the Cartography Department and want to talk to a "Heart Doctor" As a result internally we've occasionally referred to ourselves as the Cardiology Dept.


Not long after I started in the field, I was doing my laundry at a laundry mat / coffee shop. A few us that were there doing our laundry together (but were all strangers to one another) were asking each other 'so what do you do for a living?' I replied 'cartographic artist', do which the reply was 'wow...what is a cardiologist doing at a laundry mat?' :blink:

Even with my friends and family, I usually just say 'I make maps', and then go into detail if I think I can get away with explaining it better. :P

Yeah, my wife drives me nuts when ever I make a wrong turn in the car with "I thought you were are cartographer...Don't you make maps for a living..."

...because I have every map of everywhere, ever made commited to memory.


Oh, that's just your wife getting her digs in. My wife does the same thing.

I always reply - "I'm not lost, I'm just exploring."
David Toney, GISP
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United States Marine Corps
West Coast Installations

#10
Hans van der Maarel

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'wow...what is a cardiologist doing at a laundry mat?'


Eh... laundry? :P
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#11
CHART

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Like others "is everything not already mapped".... is the most frequent one I get when I tell someone I make maps for a living.
To which I get latter in the conversation, "can you make me a map of the lake where my cottage is, and oh, can you show water depths"... go figure. Yep, I'll have it ready for you tomorrow at no charge of course.

To my wife, when I get lost and she tells me "don't you make maps for a living"... I say nothing... (somethings are better left without replies...)
Chart

#12
Rob

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Basically the best approach is to leave it at, "I work with computers...." and they respond with "Computers, that's a great field." Easy enough.


I'm going to start using this one erin... very succinct.

#13
benbakelaar

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Basically the best approach is to leave it at, "I work with computers...." and they respond with "Computers, that's a great field." Easy enough.


I'm going to start using this one erin... very succinct.


I totally do the same thing :) More appropriate for me since I'm still mostly in the IT field. But trust me, being a geography major gets the same questions!

#14
Cartisan Maps

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Yeah, my fiance's parents were quite impressed when they found out I was a cardiologist.

Nowadays, well...um.. maybe I shouldn't have corrected that silly misunderstanding..

Brody.
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#15
Jean-Louis

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[To my wife, when I get lost and she tells me "don't you make maps for a living"

:) I love when stangers ask me for directions to a place I know. I beam with pride, explain directions with style and flourish while I snap my suspenders and tell them I draw maps for a living.'

:angry: I hate when people who know me ask me for obscure directions and wonder how come I dont know every adress in the city by heart.

B) When I'm lost -always a great embarassement to a map man- my standard reply is:" I,m not lost, I,m right here. Its the place we are looking for that is of unknown wherabouts" If anybody challenges the absurdsity of the proposition, just repeat it loud and with authority and insist that they do not uderstand the basic fundamentals of spatial orientation.
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