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#1
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Hello All!

Some background info on myself:
I am a Geography student at Cal State Long Beach and I am planning on taking Remote Sensing, GIS and Cartography classes in the Fall. I want to get a jump start on my classes and do some reading up on the topics we will be covering in class and was looking for some books (besides the required readings) to give me a head start. I was certified in GIS back in 2004 so I'm not a complete noob, I am looking for something that can be a refresher and take me to the Graduate school level.

So my question is,

What books helped you the most in developing your GIS/Carto/Remote Sensing expertise?

Any input is appreciated.
Gracias B)

#2
Gretchen Peterson

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For general GIS textbooks, check out what Don Boyes has to say in his blog post "GIS textbooks I have taught with."

For a general Esri product refresher I really like the GIS Tutorial series (number 1, 2, and 3). You can proceed through those at a quick clip, skimming the bits that you already know well.

For general geotheory you probably can't go wrong with DeMers' Fundamentals of Geographic Information Systems.

For the most up-to-date discussions on general geo topics keep abreast of the twitter discussions. Most recently I've been learning about this concept of "noGIS" (a nod to "noSQL") via twitter. A good start would be to read one of the GIS lists - of which there are MANY - such as NeoGeoDon's geonerds.

For Cartography specific textbooks I of course would recommend my own book GIS Cartography: A Guide to Effective Map Design, published in April 2009. This is a book written in a conversational, non-textbook, tone.

For remote sensing you could sign up to read Tina Cary's brief monthly newsletter, which often focuses on current remote sensing developments.

#3
James Hines

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I also graduated in 2004 & like you I'm also making plans on furthering my education. What I would suggest is to find research material on subjects of your interest, in this case remote sensing. If your freelancing either get open source software related to your subject or if you can afford it just buy the proper software & practice what you preach. And by the time you start class you will have an edge over your fellow piers. But from what I heard at least from a Canadian perspective remote sensing jobs are few, far, & between. You need to do some research to see if there is a reasonable chance of at least getting into something similar, because if not change your priorities & look into something else.

For example I seem to have an interest in database design & consequently; I have started to read a book on that subject. And it's a good read so far. Maybe the book I have may come in use as well for you since I believe that remote sensing uses spatial databases as well. I'm also considering getting a book on SQL.

"There is much beauty that we fail to see through our own eyes teeming with life forms that give us that perception of our reality.  Leaves on the trees blowing gently in the wind, or scarily, the waves pounding through high surf, or lightly on a warm summer’s day; that opportunity to sit or swim in the water on a white beach.   That comfort to shout, “The universal conscious do you hear me?  I am alive, guide me dear logos towards the path of rightnesses.”  Earned what has been kept, no longer to be absorbed into a life filled with cold damn winds and  that stubborn fog clouding  my vision with nothing but darkness."


#4
David Medeiros

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Making Maps (Kryger & Wood) is a good primer on cartography for GIS users. The 2nd edition is out now and looks to be a decent upgrade from the original.

Cartographic Relief Presentation (Eduard Imhof) is an older book translated from German and a bit technical but well worth having. It goes beyond basic terrain representation.

Another Imhof work thats worth reading is this PDF on map labeling: http://www.sonic.net...mes_on_Maps.pdf

And here's some good basic advice for novice cartographer from Tom Patterson: http://www.sonic.net...terson_cp65.pdf

If you want to explore map making as visual information then take a look at some of Edward Tuftes books on information design: The Visual Display of Information; Envisioning Information, and Visual Explanations. Lots of good advice and examples that apply directly to cartography and GIS mapping in particular where you are usually working with data heavy designs.

Aside from all that, the best thing you can do for your own education is pay attention to maps you like and try to figure out makes them better than others. Emulate good design and don't be afraid to copy style choices. Cartography is largely derivative. This is an occupation where you will learn more by doing than reading so just start making maps!

Good luck.

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#5
HPCocoa

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Making Maps (Kryger & Wood) is a good primer on cartography for GIS users. The 2nd edition is out now and looks to be a decent upgrade from the original.

Cartographic Relief Presentation (Eduard Imhof) is an older book translated from German and a bit technical but well worth having. It goes beyond basic terrain representation.

Another Imhof work thats worth reading is this PDF on map labeling: http://www.sonic.net...mes_on_Maps.pdf

And here's some good basic advice for novice cartographer from Tom Patterson: http://www.sonic.net...terson_cp65.pdf

If you want to explore map making as visual information then take a look at some of Edward Tuftes books on information design: The Visual Display of Information; Envisioning Information, and Visual Explanations. Lots of good advice and examples that apply directly to cartography and GIS mapping in particular where you are usually working with data heavy designs.

Aside from all that, the best thing you can do for your own education is pay attention to maps you like and try to figure out makes them better than others. Emulate good design and don't be afraid to copy style choices. Cartography is largely derivative. This is an occupation where you will learn more by doing than reading so just start making maps!

Good luck.



Thank you for the information. I am thinking of changing careers to being a cartographer as I have always held a love of maps - do you think that one could start training at any age? Or over the age of 30 a bit late to start on this?

I appreciate and welcom your comments.

#6
EC2011

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I agree with the DeMers source -- can't go wrong with it.

#7
Matthew Hampton

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The best cartography book I have found is also the smallest and cheapest. I can't say enough good things about The British Cartographic Society's Cartography - an introduction. This little A6 format book is crammed with all the good stuff you need.

If you want a background in theory you could do no better than Bertin's Semiology of Graphics. I think this volume is immensely more valuable and prescient to cartography than anything Tufte has ever published.

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#8
Martin Gamache

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Another small book full of good stuff is the AAG published "Some Truth with Maps" by Alan MacEachren

http://www.amazon.co...s/dp/0892912146

#9
Matthew Toro

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For general GIS textbooks, check out what Don Boyes has to say in his blog post "GIS textbooks I have taught with."

For a general Esri product refresher I really like the GIS Tutorial series (number 1, 2, and 3). You can proceed through those at a quick clip, skimming the bits that you already know well.

For general geotheory you probably can't go wrong with DeMers' Fundamentals of Geographic Information Systems.

For the most up-to-date discussions on general geo topics keep abreast of the twitter discussions. Most recently I've been learning about this concept of "noGIS" (a nod to "noSQL") via twitter. A good start would be to read one of the GIS lists - of which there are MANY - such as NeoGeoDon's geonerds.

For Cartography specific textbooks I of course would recommend my own book GIS Cartography: A Guide to Effective Map Design, published in April 2009. This is a book written in a conversational, non-textbook, tone.

For remote sensing you could sign up to read Tina Cary's brief monthly newsletter, which often focuses on current remote sensing developments.


Hi Gretchen,

Your book, GIS Cartography: A Guide to Effective Map Design, looks great. However, the price is pretty steep. Is there a paperback version for less (hopefully way less) than ~$80.00?

Thanks,

Matthew Toro

#10
Charles Syrett

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Matthew, have you priced textbooks lately? $80 isn't out of line at all. What kind of value do you place on your time? How much of your time would it take to learn – on your own, without guidance – what is encapsulated in any of these textbooks? If you're actually serious about learning cartography, and have any respect for it as a profession, you will do what it takes, right! B)

Charles Syrett
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http://www.mapgraphics.com


Hi Gretchen,

Your book, GIS Cartography: A Guide to Effective Map Design, looks great. However, the price is pretty steep. Is there a paperback version for less (hopefully way less) than ~$80.00?

Thanks,

Matthew Toro



#11
Hans van der Maarel

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FWIW, and to add to what Charles said, Gretchen's book is hardcover and full-color. Well worth it imho.

And let's face it, if the stuff you learn from this book saves you just 2 or 3 hours, it will already have paid for itself. It's an investment in you as a professional cartographer and I think it's very well suited to somebody coming from a GIS background.
Hans van der Maarel - Cartotalk Editor
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#12
James Hines

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The book is very expensive if you don't have a job, no money, no support, no hope, & live in despair. So I can agree that Gretchen's book is a bit pricy for a struggling person who can't make ends meat. However at the same time $80.00 isn't that much if you have a descent income source to pay for the education that you would get from studying that book. I think that the money is worth it considering the material of information that you would get from that self taught education. The two text books that I have ordered both dealing with spatial databases have both been informative, & I have found that I have understood both of them well because I took the risk.

However despite the wealth of information the clientele for many cartographers has been lackluster. It took me some time to understand that no matter how much information I learned; the field of cartography is changing & the current trend for geographers has been greatly undervalued in the GIS field because employers are more attracted to specialists such as database administrators & programmers. Print media is dying, everything is going digital, & the evidence is there not only for our spectrum of cartography but for newspapers, magazines, & books. I have heard that one of these sectors will go entirely digital as early as 2016.

My advice is if you want to pursue cartography in the freelance world supplement it with another job. Chose any GIS books you want with a focus on a specialization in the GIS field.

For me I enjoy making maps, I feel intelligent working with GIS systems but at the end of the day I found out that cartography maybe a job that I am not to do in this life time. Thanks to finding out in combination with the secret I have discovered that I am an 11 life path & 11 destiny according to my numerology as a high level two is in the teaching, diplomacy, law, metaphysics, & political fields. In other words I am not an administrator but a right hand man. Still though cartography does serve a purpose & I will be using it towards my true destiny & a side profit, so buy the books you need in particular try the ebay site. There are a lot of cheap books that you should find some discounts.

"There is much beauty that we fail to see through our own eyes teeming with life forms that give us that perception of our reality.  Leaves on the trees blowing gently in the wind, or scarily, the waves pounding through high surf, or lightly on a warm summer’s day; that opportunity to sit or swim in the water on a white beach.   That comfort to shout, “The universal conscious do you hear me?  I am alive, guide me dear logos towards the path of rightnesses.”  Earned what has been kept, no longer to be absorbed into a life filled with cold damn winds and  that stubborn fog clouding  my vision with nothing but darkness."


#13
RonInNJ

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Hello All,

I try to read one or two Cartography/GIS books per year. What would you recommend that has been published in the past year? Thanks!

Ron




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