Performance of map symbol and label design with format and display resolution options through scale for the national map

Cynthia Ann Brewer, C. L. Hanchett, B. P. Buttenfield, E. L. Usery

Research output: Contribution to journalConference article

1 Scopus citations

Abstract

Symbol and label design for U.S. topographic mapping using data from The National Map has been progressing, partly in support of research by Buttenfield and Stanislawski on hydrographic generalization, and is sponsored by CEGIS, the USGS Center of Excellence for Geospatial Information Science. The work also seeks to make the best use of GIS for map design that requires no hand-work to make custom adjustments for readable displays. Users of electronic topographic map products may use U.S. topographic maps in multiple media, so the robustness of the designs will be tested across varied landscape regimes and through scale. Maps from hydrographic subbasins in Missouri, West Virginia, Florida-Georgia, Colorado, Utah, Texas, and urban areas of Saint Louis, and Atlanta are evaluated at six scales from 1:24,000 to 1:1,000,000. Map segments for the evaluation are selected to cover a wide sampling of symbol combinations and labeling challenges. Maps are examined on-screen in ArcGIS (MXD) and as a PDF export on-screen. Onscreen views are examined at 96 ppi, common for Windows desktop computer screens, and 130 ppi, representing the higher resolution that laptop computer screens offer. The goal of the work is to systematically refine the map symbols and labels so the resulting map performs well in all of these forms through all scales.

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Information Systems
  • Geography, Planning and Development

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