Volume 20, Number 1 
Fall, 1999

 
  •   Words from the Chair 
  •    Call for Nominations 
  •   What's in a Name -  Keeping the Issue Alive 
  •    Free Munsell Color Converter 
  •   Digital Version of Significant 18th Century Map Available 
  •    1999 Calendar
  •    Master’s Thesis Grant Announcement 
  •    1999-2000 CSG Officers 
  •                                                     Return to Other Newsletters

    Words from the Chair

    Charlie Rader

    The leaves are turning and dropping here in River Falls. As we go through time things change, we grow older, learning the new and remembering the old, and we change a great deal in the process. Welcome to autumn. The metaphor of autumn provides the inspiration to look back on the past, where we have been, and an impetus to think about the future, and where we are going. I think that we have all reflected upon this a great deal over the past year. The future is here (and it will be arriving fresh every day). As further evidence, presumably most of you are reading this newsletter for the first time in its entirety on the WEB! The question now is where do we as cartographers want to go?

    The discussions over the past year, about a potential name change for Cartography Specialty Group is but one way that we have been attempting to answer this question. The change of a name is but one way to express a new identity, or as with The Artist Formerly Known As Prince (TAFKAP) to cast off an old identity. A new identity might be something that can help us better explain who we are and what we do, but it also is not the silver bullet. Action is perhaps more where we will see potential gains for cartography and action is often the only way to affect change. What can we do to raise and promote the visibility of this wonderful thing we have in common?

    I have been thinking about what I do as a cartographer, geographer, GIS specialist, and educator a great deal as of late. Like the much documented and woeful lack of geographic literacy in the United States, the CSG has a similar sort of identity problem common with our larger umbrella organization, the AAG. How do we communicate with others that which we do? How may we improve cartographic literacy? One of the ways we can do this is to demonstrate to others what we do in ways that extend beyond the map itself, whether it be paper, digital, virtual, or mental. Public demonstrations of what cartography is and how it is changing represent but one way of promoting the discipline.
     Building VisibilityIf we decide to change our name, we need to build visibility as to what the name change represents and some forms of public demonstrations might best do this. I have recently become a convert to being a cartographic exhibitionist. Over the past year our department has taken on a small local campaign to present more information to the local community about geography, maps and mapping. We have participated in event on our campus that could make us more visible to students, faculty, staff and the community. I spent a day standing at a University Display for the St. Croix Watershed Expo, and I found out that maps are as interesting to people of all ages as stone flies and other local macro invertebrates. Interactivity, visualization and the Internet extend our capacity to reach out.

    Over the summer , I had the opportunity to teach a class on maps and mapping to a group of 8th graders for the College Camp program. We had a lot of fun. We made maps of our neighborhoods, learned how to
    use a map and compass (one student almost ended up in the next county), we looked at a 1964 replica of Abraham Ortelius’s Theatrum orbis terrarum in our archive, we wrote short histories of famous cartographers, we talked about the art in cartography and we worked with ArcView and made a couple thematic maps. The kids really loved it since they were able to relate it to some abstract things, like math, that they had learned without a context. This may never have a direct payback, it may not pay back next year, or the year after but I am sure that it was worth it for those kids ultimately. I would urge any of you to try this sometime (contact me and I’ll share what I have). We can often achieve a great deal in small steps.

    There is a lot of interest in maps out there. Recently, I attended the opening of the Maps and Art Exhibit at the Wiesman Art Museum at the University of Minnesota. It is an impressive exhibit with historical maps, maps incorporated into art, and several works commissioned for the show. I was struck by the comments of the artists who created those works and how different their ideas of what maps are from ours as cartographers. Similarly, the meaning of "art" in our much used definition … cartography is the art, science, and technology…. I think, is much different than the "art" of their world. Irrespective exhibits often have a way of promoting further understanding for all involved through the dialog which they facilitate. Not all exhibits have to be this impressive, but not all exhibits take a decade or more to mature into a final display. What could we do as a group and individually to introduce the idea of what cartography currently represents in its new and altered state to our public?
     The Next Step(s)Sometime over the next couple of months you will receive a questionnaire via e-mail or regular mail if you have expressed a desire to receive the newsletter in that format. The survey will address the issue of the identity of the group and whether a name change will help us to better promote, to corrupt the movie-take-off of a recent title of an editorial by Mike Peterson in Cartographic Perspectives, "that cartographic thing you do". Furthermore, if the CSG members deem that a name change is desirable, we need you to think about what it should be. We will compile the results and present them in the Winter Newsletter. The CSG board will then develop a proposal for the name and develop a plan for discussing this and voting on the change at the Business Meeting in Pittsburgh. Member input is important in this so I look forward to your responses from the questionnaire/survey.

    In closing, James Lowry and numerous others have completed the hard work of organizing the sessions for the Pittsburgh meeting. Thanks to all of the James, session organizers, and presenters for your participation in what should be an exciting meeting for us. Thanks to Nancy Winter, Sharron Macklin, and Larry Handley who will be helping with the questionairre. Also, welcome to our new Newsletter Editor, Frank Boscoe and thank you for the all the excellent work of putting us on line.

    Should you have any comments please forward them my way. I can be reached at 715.425.3264 or charles.p.rader @uwrf.edu or the address on the masthead of the newsletter. I look forward to hearing from you, and have a wonderful autumn =
     

    Call for Nominations, 2000 - 2001

    The 2000-2001 Cartography Specialty Group Nominations Committee requests nominees for the following offices up for election:

    Vice Chair (2000-2001)

    Secretary/Treasurer (2000-2002)
    Academic Director (2000-2002)
    Student Director (2000-2001)

    Continuing officers for the coming year include Lawrence Handley, Non-Academic Director (through 2001), Aileen Buckley, Academic Director (through 2001), James Lowry, who will become the new Chair, and Charlie Rader, who will become the Past Chair.

    Please contact Scott Freundschuh by November 15, 1999 to suggest possible candidates:

    Scott Freundschuh
    Department of Geography
    University of Minnesota
    Duluth, MN 55812

    218-726-6226
    sfreunds@d.umn.edu

    What’s in a Name – Keeping the Issue Alive

    Aileen Buckley

    I had the extreme pleasure of once again organizing a series of sessions on visualization, co-sponsored by the CSG and the GISSG, for the upcoming AAG annual conference. Luckily, I shared the task with Jeremy Crampton this year. Having undertaken this activity for the past three years, I am pleased to report that the trend for increased involvement that we saw in past years continued this year. When I first volunteered to organize these sessions in 1997, there were two sessions with ten participants. In 1998, there were three sessions with fourteen participants. Last year, the count was up to four sessions with twenty participants.

    Thirty-three papers were submitted for inclusion in the sessions for the meeting in 2000, and we are still in the process of organizing the illustrated paper session (which, by the way, has been a very successful format for presenting information on visualization in past conferences.) It is clear that this is an extreme response to a modest request for participation. (If anyone feels inclined to take on the task for next year, please let me know!) It is also clear that the interest in presenting papers and posters on this subject is and has been growing, and I expect it to continue. A web site detailing these sessions may be found at http://geography.uoregon.edu/ buckley/aag/sessions.htm)

    The papers in these sessions range over a variety of topics, including conceptual, cognitive, development, computational, and human, social, and historical issues. In addition, there are a number of papers that demonstrate applications in various domains, including but not inclusive of transportation, climatology, and limnology. In these sessions, I have seen marked advancement of the science since the first series in 1997. Additionally, I have seen the field expand to include players from within and outside the discipline of geography, from national and international institutions, and from within and outside the academy. It may be that this increased participation reflects the importance of these sessions to provide one of the few outlets for organized presentation of the vast and various research in the visualization of GEOGRAPHIC data in particular.

    I believe the tremendous response to this call for participation speaks to a need for seriously considering visualization’s place within the discipline of Geography. I have heard some debate that it is already encompassed within various domains of the discipline; for example, one could identify a number of specialty groups in the AAG that embrace various aspects of visualization, such as cartography, GIS, and mathematical models and quantitative methods, as well as any of the substantive areas in which visualization is applied (e.g., climate, historical geography, transportation). The argument continues that since visualization is part of but not central to these, it should not be housed in one specialty group.

    This raises the question of what the intellectual core of geographic visualization is and whether it falls largely within, is closely related to, or is clearly distinguishable from any of the existing specialty groups. Perhaps one way to characterize GVIS is to consider its relation to scientific visualization, which developed through a need to probe large, multivariate data sets with the intent of data exploration, hypothesis generation, and knowledge construction. GVIS may be generally characterized by its use for large data sets, its use for data exploration, its use of multiple windows into the data set, its higher level of interactivity, the ephemeral and changeable nature of its images, its use of computation, and its use by usually one or few viewers. As a result, GVIS presents us with a new way of thinking that emphasizes knowledge construction rather than communication, data exploration rather than presentation, and a high level of user interactivity. How does this relate to the current (and future) field of cartography?

    I imagine the answer to that question is extremely complex, and I won’t attempt to address it here. However, I can offer some observations. It appears to me that geographic visualization is taking on an interesting identity of its own, with advances in concepts and theory, as well as the development of methods, and the application of techniques. These developments reflect a maturation of the research in this field. In reviewing the many abstracts submitted for the sessions on visualization, a large number of them could be categorized as what we have traditionally called "cartography". It may be that some folks are simply unaware that their work actually falls within the more conventional domain of cartography. Or it may be that some people are aware that their research is truly cartographic in nature, but they decided to use the currently fashionable term "visualization" to draw attention to their work. In any case, some of the abstracts reflect research that pushes the limits of what we have traditionally called cartography. But the fact remains that what I am seeing from this exercise in organization and service to the CSG and AAG is an increasing interest in research relating to visualization, much of which has definite links to the field of cartography.

    If the links are in place, and visualization needs a home, can cartography accommodate such a bedfellow? Will the face of cartography be somehow changed through affiliation with visualization? Has that transformation already begun, even without a formal association? What does the CSG have to gain, and lose, from providing a home for visualization within the AAG? I think these questions are important and should remain on the table until we as a specialty group
    come to some sort of agreement on our support of or perhaps distinction from geographic visualization.

    A survey soliciting CSG member opinions on a specialty group name change will be compiled during the fall semester with the goal of bringing the issue to a vote at the annual AAG meeting in Pittsburgh. I hope other members of the CSG will share their ideas on the subject, as well their thoughts on the ideas raised here. And I hope all of us will participate in the survey and vote on the issues.
     

    Free Munsell Color Converter

    A useful freeware utility for converting between Munsell, XYZ, L* a* b*, RGB and CMYK color spaces is available at http://www.munsell.com/Download.htm.
     
     

    Digital Version of Significant 18th Century Map Available

    The Historical Survey of the New York State Museum, in cooperation with the New York State Library, has created a digital version of the Thomas Kitchin map titled "Communication between Albany and Oswego", engraved for Thomas Mante's "The Late War in North America", London, 1772.

    This map, in the collections of the New York State Library, is the best 18th century map in existence to clearly show the inland waterway network that allowed travel betwen the Upper Hudson River (Albany) and the Great Lakes (Oswego) before the Erie Canal was opened in 1825.

    For this reason it presents a great lesson in the geography of New York State - a geography which, in the context of transportation history, was of international significance.

    This digital map is presented in an ultra "clean" format, in which the background colors of the paper have been reduced to a single value, preserving all the inkwork of the engraving while decreasing file sizes and load times.

    The Kitchin Map may be accessed at: http://www.nysm.nysed.gov/history/water/index.html
     

    1999 Calendar

    November 7. Frederick R. Weisman Art Museum, University of Minnesota. 2:00 pm Rob Silberman, Yi-Fu Tuan and David Woodward will host "A Conversation About Maps".

    November 11-14. Social Science History Association Meeting, Fort Worth, TX. The meeting will feature a set of sessions on the historical applications of Geographical Information Systems, including sessions on the Irish Famine Atlas, the Newberry Library's Atlas of US County Boundaries and the dissemination of electronic historical data.

    November 21. Frederick R. Weisman Art Museum, University of Minnesota. 2:00 pm. Robert McMaster of the University of Minnesota will speak on "Twentieth Century American Cartography".

    November 25. Warburg Institute, University of London, Woburn Square. 5:00 pm. Uta Lindgren of the University of Bayreuth will speak on "Constructing Accurate Sea Charts in the Thirteenth Century: The Scientific Evidence". See listing for October 28.

    November 26-27. 2nd European Map Fair, Breda, The Netherlands. The fair will include more than 25 vendors and dealers as well as an exhibition of city plans and town views from all over the world.

    December 2. Frederick R. Weisman Art Museum, University of Minnesota. 7:30 pm. Astronomer Robert Humphreys will speak on "Mapping the Night Sky: From the Solar System to the Universe".

    December 9. Warburg Institute, University of London, Woburn Square. 5:00 pm. Bruce Lenman of the University of St. Andrews will speak on "War a Catalyst for Cartography: The Cases for Cartagena de Indias and Havana, 1660-1762".

    Through December. Representing Animals: Imagery from the AGS Collection. Located in the American Geographical Society Collection at the Univesity of Wisconsin –Milwaukee. Exhibit consists of maps and atlases which contain images of animals, as well as maps about various types of animals and birds and their distribution. Materials in the exhibit range from 1572 to the 1990s. http://www.uwm.edu/Library/Misc/exhibits.html

    Through January 2, 2000. World Views: Maps and Art, Weisman Art Museum, University of Minnesota. This exhibition examines the complex relationships between maps and art. Includes a series of lectures about cartography and maps. More information may be obtained at http://hudson.acad.umn.edu/WAMhome.html

    2000

    February 4-5. International Map Trade Association of Europe, Africa and the Middle East Seventh Annual Conference and Trade Show, Heidelberg, Germany. Contact: Sue Cranidge, IMTA EAME, 5 Spinacre, Becton Lane, Barton on Sea, Hants BH25 7DF ENGLAND. Phone: 44-1425-620532 E-mail: imtaeurope@compuserve.com

    March 20-23. American Congress on Surveying and Mapping Annual Convention, Little Rock, Arkansas. Contact: ACSM Phone: (301) 493-0200. WWW: www.survmap.org

    April 4-8. Association of American Geographers Annual Meeting, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
    Contact: AAG, 1710 16th St. NW, Washington DC 20009-3198.
    Phone: (202) 234-1450. WWW: www.aag.org

    September 6-8. International Cartographic Association, Conference on "Teaching Maps for Children: Theories, Experiences and Perspectives Beginning the Third Millenium", Budapest, Hungary. Contact: Jesús Reyes Nunez, Eötvös Loránd University, Department of Cartography, Pázmány Péter sétány 1/A. Budapest 1117, Hungary. Telephone: 36 (1) 372-2975. E-mail: jesus@ludens.elte.hu. WWW: http://lazarus.elte.hu/hun/

    dolgozo/jesus/meeting2/bp2000.html
     

    Master’s Thesis Research Grant Announcement of 1999-2000 Award Applications

    The Cartography Specialty Group of the Association of American Geographers is pleased to announce the 1999-2000 Master’s Thesis Research Grants. These grants are available to master’s students working on cartographic research and who are enrolled in a geography degree program. Grants are available up to a maximum of $300 and may be used for items necessary and relevant to research such as travel, materials, equipment, and human subject fees. Deadlines for applications are November 1st, March 15th, and June 15th.

    Fundable Research
    Fundable research must be cartographic in nature.
    Cartography must be the central focus of the research, and not merely a tool used in support of some other research.

    Review of Proposals
    Research proposals will be judged based upon (1) their originality, (2) their research design or plan of work, and (3) their budget and its justification. Proposals are reviewed in a non-blind process by a committee of three people selected by the Non-Academic Director in consultation with the CSG Chair.

    Date of Awards
    Awards will be made two months after the review date for which the proposal was submitted.

    Application Form Required for Submission
    An application form may be obtained from the Non-Academic Director. Fill the form out completely. Note that the applicant and the advisor are jointly responsible for the accuracy and validity of all information on the application. Be sure to complete the budget and justification on the
    back of the application form. List the requested items from highest to lowest priority and include price quotations for

    these items. Below, provide a brief justification of why the items you are requesting are necessary to your thesis.

    Finally, state whether you will accept partial funding should the entire amount requested not be granted.

    Description of the Research Plan
    A description of your research plan is also required. Place your name and the title of your thesis at the top of the first page. State the research objectives and the specific aims of the research. Describe concisely the methods for achieving these goals. The research plan should not exceed three pages. Please note that human subject clearance must be obtained before grant money can be awarded, if the research involves human subjects.

    All applications must be typewritten or completed on a word processor. Incomplete applications will not be considered. Applications must be received by the deadline in order to be considered for funding.

    Submit the original signed application form and research plan, along with two copies, to:

    Lawrence Handley
    U.S. Geological Survey
    National Wetlands Research Center
    700 Cajundome Blvd
    Lafayette, LA 70506

    Newsletter Deadline

    Submission of items for the CSG newsletter must be received by December 10 for the winter issue.

    Please email (fpb01@health.state.ny.us) or mail articles to Frank Boscoe, New York State Cancer Registry, 536 Corning Tower, Albany, NY 12237-0679.
     

    Address Changes

    The CSG receives its email addresses and mailing labels from AAG Headquarters. Changes or corrections to the mailing list should be sent to Kevin Klug, Director of Membership, AAG, 1710 Sixteenth Street, NW, Washington, DC 20009-3198.
     

    1999-2000 CSG Officers

    Chair (1999-2000)

    Charles Rader
    Department of Geography
    Univ.of Wisconsin - River Falls
    River Falls, WI 54022-5001
    715-425-3264
    charles.p.rader@uwrf.edu

    Vice Chair (1999-2000)
    James Lowry
    Dept of Geography / ECU Box Q2
    East Central University
    Ada, OK 74820
    580-310-5397
    jlowry@mailclerk.ecok.edu

    Past Chair (1999-2000)
    Scott Freundschuh
    Department of Geography
    University of Minnesota Duluth
    Duluth, MN 55812
    218-726-6226
    sfreunds@d.umn.edu

    Secretary/Treasurer (1998-2000)
    Ann Goulette
    Booz Allen & Hamilton
    8283 Greensboro Drive
    McLean, VA 22105
    703-902-5152
    goulette_ann@bah.com

    Academic Director (1998-2000)
    Elisabeth Nelson
    Department of Geography
    The University of North Carolina at Greensboro
    Greensboro, North Carolina 27402
    esnelso2@uncg.edu

    Academic Director (1999-2001)
    Aileen Buckley
    Department of Geography
    University of Oregon
    Eugene, OR 97403-1251
    aileen@darkwing.uoregon.edu

    Non-Academic Director (1999-2001)
    Lawrence Handley
    U.S. Geological Survey
    National Wetlands Research Center
    700 Cajundome Blvd
    Lafayette, LA 70506
    318-266-8691
    larry_handley@usgs.gov

    Student Director (1999-2000)
    Julie Rice
    Kent State University
    Kent, OH 44242
    janegrey@rocketmail.com

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