NACIS 2016 has ended
Welcome to NACIS 2016 in Colorado Springs! This is the annual meeting of the North American Cartographic Information Society (NACIS). See the schedule below and check out the NACIS website for more details.

The North American Cartographic Information Society, founded in 1980, is an organization comprised of specialists from private, academic, and government organizations whose common interest lies in facilitating communication in the map information community.
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Wednesday, October 19 • 1:30pm - 3:10pm
Practical Cartography Day - Early Afternoon Session

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The joy of hex: Challenges in creating and interpreting spatial bins
Sarah Battersby, Tableau Software
20 Minutes

Complex, large N point datasets present challenges for visualization and synthesis of spatial patterns due to the density of marks and resulting clutter from overlapping mark symbols.  One suggested method for dealing with complex point datasets is to partition the space into polygonal bins, and symbolize each bin based on point count inside the bin.    Because regular polygonal (e.g., square or hexagonal) bins appear as same size and shape, they are suggested as a method for improving ability to analyze smooth, continuous change in point distributions, while avoiding artifacts from irregular political bin geometry.  However, there is a fallacy if regular geographic bins are really considered to represent "same size and shape."   In this presentation, we discuss challenges and tradeoffs the cartographer must consider in creating spatial bins, and, more importantly, challenges the map reader faces in interpreting bins in a way that aligns with the cartographer’s intended message. 

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Natural Scene Designer Pro 7
Tom Patterson, US National Park Service
20 Minutes 

Natural Scene Designer Pro 7, due for release this summer for Mac and Windows, has a slew of new features. I will demo my favorites. SVG Export to Adobe Illustrator Combining vector shapefiles and raster 3D terrain is now easy with NSD 7. The exported vectors in SVG format include a bounding box matching the size of the of rendered 3D terrain. Multiple Lights Northwest light is not always the best solution for depicting all features on a shaded relief. To improve the appearance of tricky terrain features, NSD Pro 7 now gives you the option to add multiple lights on a relief. You can adjust the azimuth and elevation angle of each light. Terrain Editing Is that ski area you are mapping not high enough? Use the improved terrain editing tools to brush in more elevation. Texture Shading Enhance shaded relief with this now built-in rendering option.


Cartography and the Lost Art of Drawing
Ryan Sullivan, Paste in Place
15 Minutes 

This talk will illustrate the benefits of integrating hand sketching into the map design process. As cartography and related disciplines come to rely on the computer and digital technologies as their primary design and production tool, the unique benefits of hand sketching and its relationship to visual thinking and design development have been overlooked. The presentation will share specific examples and methods from the author’s work and offer suggestions for how others can incorporate hand sketching into their work flow. Additionally, examples from other cartographers and designers will be included.

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The complete solution from data to mobile device
Nick Burchell, Avenza Systems Inc
20 Minutes 

Avenza's platform is revolutionizing cartography in the digital era. This presentation will demonstrate how cartographers can bring raw geospatial data into graphic design applications to create high quality maps, then show how they can be distributed to smartphones and tablets for public consumption. Where maps were once only for print, you will see how they can now be easily and quickly distributed to map readers globally for use in their work and for their leisure activities.

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Hand-rendered map illustration techniques
Molly O’Halloran, Molly O’Halloran, Inc.
20 Minutes 

Simple, practical design, drafting, and painting tips I've picked up from architecture school, art classes, and years of trial, error, and experimentation in the making of hand-rendered maps. We'll walk through the mapmaking process, starting with finding good, copyright-free base maps and designing the page/area layout. We'll look at papers and transferring techniques; pen nibs for line work and lettering; inks for fountain and dip pens; watercolor techniques for shorelines and mountains. I'll also touch on Photoshop cleanup and file assembly, and will be eager to hear tips and techniques that work best for you.
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avatar for Carolyn Fish

Carolyn Fish

Assistant Professor, University of Oregon
avatar for Vanessa Knoppke-Wetzel

Vanessa Knoppke-Wetzel

Associate Director, GreenInfo Network
Vanessa is a detail-oriented cartographer, designer, analyst, educator, and community-builder that loves thinking about how to create and design products and utilize spatial data to tell visual stories in the best way possible. She also cares a lot about cultivating, building, and... Read More →

avatar for Sarah Battersby

Sarah Battersby

Research Scientist, Tableau Software
Sarah Battersby is a research scientist at Tableau Software. Her primary area of focus is cartography, with an emphasis on cognition. Her work emphasizes how we can help people visualize and use spatial information more effectively. Her research has covered a variety of areas, including... Read More →
avatar for Nick Burchell

Nick Burchell

Director, QA & Customer Services, Avenza Systems Inc.
avatar for Molly O'Halloran

Molly O'Halloran

Molly O'Halloran, Inc.
NACIS Board member, 2019–2021
avatar for Tom Patterson

Tom Patterson

Cartographer, US National Park Service
I like mountains and maps.

Wednesday October 19, 2016 1:30pm - 3:10pm MDT
Heritage A/B/C