We’re making some changes to the covers of our iconic paper maps this year – but you’ll be pleased to hear that the contents will remain familiar and you’ll still be able to navigate around the country, spotting interesting sights.
With 600+ paper maps covering the whole of Great Britain, there is plenty of scope for map symbols to help you spot the key navigational points. Most of you will be familiar with our map symbols – pubs, campsites, churches and so on. They point out where things are across the country and help you to plan your trips – working out where the best viewpoint is, highlighting the pubs (a key feature!) and helping to navigate across the countryside. They’re not only on paper maps, but also on our range of mobile apps and online products.
At OS, we sponsor and judge one of the British Cartographic Society (BCS) awards and once again this year we will be rewarding cartographic excellence and the innovative use of OS OpenData. The 2015 awards launched in March and are made annually at the society’s symposium which this year promises to be a fantastic event as it is being jointly hosted with the Society of Cartographers (SoC).
We are just over halfway through our series of posts about our Cartographic Design Principles. Last week we shone the spotlight on Simplicity and this week we continue our series as we turn our attention to Legibility. In its simplest definition, to be legible is to be easily read. It is extremely important for a map to be legible as the user should be able to easily understand the message that the cartographer was attempting to portray. Much in the same way as a book, if a map is difficult to read then it is likely to fail in its objective and not meet the user requirements.
On 2 September, we attended the second day of the conference at the University of Glasgow.
The Society of Cartographers (SoC) is an association of cartographers that was founded as the Society of University Cartographers at the University of Glasgow in 1964. The society renamed in 1989 to be open to all those who regularly make maps. So we at Ordnance Survey were honoured and delighted to be invited to both attend and present at the society’s fiftieth anniversary at the place where it all began.
The British Cartographic Society’s (BCS) GIS Special Interest Group recently held their first ever Mapathon at Marwell Hotel, Winchester. The Mapathon kicked off 3 days of mapping and would bring together a range of mapping experts each with different skills and experience before presenting them with a map challenge.
The day started with Rob Sharpe from ESRI introducing the Mapathon before delegates from Esri UK, Ordnance Survey, Steer Davies Gleave, OMV (UK), HR Wallingford, DMB, SIL International, Esri Inc and DGC were given their objective for the day. Using data provided by The Commonwealth War Graves Commission we were asked to help create maps to commemorate and educate people about World War One. The data included information on cemeteries, number of casualties, cemetery type and location and so on.
For a good five hours some of the best heads in cartography munged, pulled, manipulated and styled a wealth of geographic information in order to be crowned Mapathon winner (and win a prize money just can’t buy). At 3 pm all cartographers had to put their mice, scribers or pencils down so that the judging could begin.
Mapathon is underway
Charley from our CartoDesign team was in Stirling yesterday to officially launch our new QGIS stylesheets (QML) for OS OpenData products. The inaugural Scottish QGIS User Group Meeting, organised by thinkWhere and the UK QGIS User Group, came at a great time for us to announce our latest cartographic developments.
Our Web Services offer alternative ways to access, and use, Ordnance Survey’s high-quality mapping. The services stream the latest version of data through a robust and resilient system ensuring you have the maps where you want them, when you want them; OS OpenSpace allows users to embed OS OpenData maps, plus our 1:50 000 OS Landranger Maps, into your website or mobile device for free. You can upgrade to OS OpenSpace Pro which provides access to our premium datasets as well. OS OnDemand streams the latest most detailed maps into your GIS software, browsers or mobile devices enabling your business to make the most out of our data wherever you are located.
As well as the traditional raster products, we also provide consistently-styled mapping for use in OS OpenSpace Pro and OS OnDemand. This map stack provides a smooth zoom experience and greater consistency throughout the zoom levels, and is ideal for backdrop mapping in a digital environment. The subtle colour palette means that the data you overlay will stand out and become the main focus of your map.
Carto Hack Camp was Ordnance Survey’s first cartographic hack day, hosted by Cartographic Design and Development and the rest of the Product Development team. We brought you our first blog post last week just after the event and promised to show you more of the outputs from the day.
The event was an open invitation to anyone with an interest in cartography and data visualisation to come and work with our team for the day, we offered prizes for the winning team and there was also a paid summer internship on offer.