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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Friday, October 21 • 9:00am - 10:10am
New Terrain

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3D Printed Terrain Models and Maps -- Current State of Technology and Challenges
Michael Higgins, Summit Terragraphics Inc.
3D-printing technology offers exciting possibilities for cartographers to create accurate full-color terrain models of their work. For areas with mountainous or complicated terrain features, producing a physical map with the precise 3D terrain shape makes for a valuable interpretation tool.  3D-printing allows a quick and accurate process for creating these terrain/map models, but it also has challenges and limitations. Since 2008 Summit Terragraphics has been using 3d-printed terrain models as molds for the thermoformed raised-relief map production process. And recently, Summit has offered full color, 3d-printed models for display in museums, visitor centers, and other applications. This presentation will look closely at the design, data requirements, data processing, and construction of a 3d-printed terrain model of the island of Kauai. Print resolution and vertical scaling issues will be addressed. Summit will bring a sample of this finished model to the presentation for show-and-tell.
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Generalizing Terrain Representations with Vector Sums
Patrick Kennelly, Long Island University
Generalizing terrain representations using shaded relief are challenging, with previous efforts focusing on two methods. The first approach involves filtering or modifying the original terrain data to make a more generalized elevation model. The second approach involves filtering or generalizing the values of gray on the shaded relief map itself. An alternative approach presented here is to use surface normal vectors that are first resolved into x, y, and z components and then summed within the kernel of a low-pass filter. In this manner, the orientations of these vectors used in relief shading and associated surfaces are adjusted independently of the elevation value. Results appear sharper than generalized terrain models that are shaded or generalized shaded relief maps when a kernel of the same dimension is used to calculate mean values.
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Practical and Impractical Uses of Terrain Data
Chris Henrick, Stamen Design
Seth Fitzsimmons, Director of Technology, Stamen Design
Alan McConchie, Lead Cartographer, Stamen Design
Stamen has been collecting, processing, and experimenting with worldwide digital elevation models (DEMs) for the past year, supported by a grant from the Knight Foundation. The primary output of this is the Open Terrain project, which aims to collect resources on how to process and work with DEMs and their derivatives using open source tools, and cloud-based and scale data pipelines. In this talk we'll demonstrate a few techniques to incorporate these components into your maps as well as discuss how we're using the Open Terrain data to add hillshades to HOT's humanitarian map style and to reboot our OSM-based classic Stamen Terrain style and deploy it worldwide. We'll also explore some impractical uses of DEMs that we've experimented with purely for their aesthetic value.
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Integrating 3D Data into Cartographic Design - 10 Minute Talk
David McKittrick, Blue Marble Geographics
With the increased availability of 3D data, our traditional two-dimensional, top-down view of the world is becoming somewhat obsolete. We now have access to data that provides an immersive perspective of the natural or man-made environment and inexpensive tools are being developed that allow us to fully utilize this data. In this presentation we will explore the procedure for transforming a simple XYZ file or a dense LiDAR point cloud into an accurate representation of the terrain. This gridded raster surface model is the basis for the creation of contour lines or a hillside pattern, both of which add an element of texture to any cartographic rendering. We will also demonstrate the process for creating a cutaway or cross-sectional view of the terrain as well as draping imagery or other map layers over the terrain model to create a uniquely realistic topographic perspective.

avatar for Amy Griffin

Amy Griffin

Editor, Cartographic Perspectives, UNSW Canberra

avatar for Chris Henrick

Chris Henrick

Design Technologist, Stamen Design
Chris Henrick's love of maps began following a cross country bicycle trip of the U.S. He got his official start in Geo doing GIS Analysis and Cartography at GreenInfo Network and Avalon Travel Publishing in 2010. Recently he completed an MFA in Design and Technology at Parsons School... Read More →

Michael Higgins

President, Summit Terragraphics Inc.
I founded Summit Terragraphics 6 years ago to take advantage of the wealth of new geo data and terrain-model manufacturing technology and apply it to raised-relief maps. Summit brings increased precision and accuracy to thermoformed raised-relief maps by using high-resolution elevation... Read More →
avatar for Patrick Kennelley

Patrick Kennelley

Professor, Long Island University
avatar for David McKittrick

David McKittrick

Outreach & Training Manager, Blue Marble Geographics
David McKittrick is the Outreach and Training Manager at Blue Marble Geographics in Hallowell, Maine. A graduate of the University of Ulster in Northern Ireland, McKittrick has spent over 30 years in the field of GIS and mapping, focusing on the application and implementation of spatial... Read More →

Friday October 21, 2016 9:00am - 10:10am MDT
Heritage C