View Full Version : Real Cartographers

12-17-2008, 04:26 PM
So... how many people here really do (or have done) this for real places for a living... just out of curiosity. I wouldn't be shocked if the answer was no one, but I went looking for a thread asking and didn't find one, and thought it would be neat to know.

I'm sure it's more an "updating" thing now than a "creating" thing, but it's still an important function of society.

12-17-2008, 04:30 PM
I have never made maps, but I have participated in many, many actual map & compass course in my youth (where you are given a map, some bearing and directions and told to get from A - Z via D, H and N

12-17-2008, 05:16 PM
I know HandsomeRob does "real" cartography for a living. And he must really love his job if he goes home and does more of it as a hobby, too.

I did a few simple street maps for a church I used to work at, but that was only a tiny part of my job. I also helped to set up a membership database that was intended to interface with mapping software to spit out maps and driving directions for the visitation ministry. The pastor who was in charge of the project wanted to set everything up on his own instead of asking for any help from me, the technical director, so it never quite got up and running. Too bad, since it would have been quite a valuable tool, and I would have enjoyed learning how to build it.

12-17-2008, 08:06 PM
I do maps for a living. But would consider myself a Geographer not a Cartographer.

12-17-2008, 08:34 PM
I think it would be verra verra awesome if there were a NACO (http://naco.faa.gov/) chart member in our midst.

12-17-2008, 08:39 PM
I've worked on survey teams before, usually as the poor smuck dragging chains around, and/or holding an upright rule. However more often than not I was working to mark out the land to look like it did on the map, not making a map look like the land. I will always have a special hate for farmers that use the corners of properties as places to dump scrap metal. Stone piles aren't that bad, but I once had to work out which thing of rebar was the marker post out of the 400-500 pieces of random lengths dumped in the area.

(In the end, we just drove a new marker about 10 feet onto the guy's property from where we guessed it was suppose to be. Serves him right for admitting the scrap was his.)

12-17-2008, 08:52 PM
We've got some urban planner types and civil engineers who are members here. To me most modern cartographers are really database users, CAD operators - more and more of the work are generated by computers using GIS and satelite data. Except for those working on urban planning, or those working for National Geographic, true cartographers are almost extinct. The GIS field is shrinking, not growing.

I'm glad I am a fantasy cartographer, and not the real thing...


PS: although I've mentioned on past threads that I do get to restore 19th century maps from time to time, as part of my daytime graphics design business - so I do get involved in realworld maps, but rarely so.

12-17-2008, 11:07 PM
true cartographers are almost extinct.

See, I was wondering if it was this, or more that the job was changing drastically.

12-18-2008, 12:26 AM
I do maps for a living. But would consider myself a Geographer not a Cartographer.

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