Google Maps

Did you at any point thought of How does a map get made? Particularly when you were first introduced to maps during your lower primary school days. Well, the first maps were made by hand; it was usually a painting on materials such as paper. As you can envision, attempting to draw precisely the same again and again was exceptionally difficult.

This implied early maps changed in quality. The measure of time and effort it took to make only one map additionally implied there weren’t many maps created.

After some time, enhancements in tools and technology helped cartographers refine their abilities and deliver better maps. For instance, the innovation of the attractive compass enabled cartographers to enhance map quality and precision. The development of the printing press in the long run prompted the large scale manufacturing of maps, which implied that if one extremely exact map could be made, many duplicates of a similar map could be made.

Today, cartographers make most current maps with PCs utilizing specific mapping software. One exceptionally intriguing sort of present day map is the Google Street View map, which enables clients to pick a point on the map and view the location as though they were standing in that spot! These all-encompassing maps are made utilizing new and energizing sorts of technology. Let us review it in full

The Google maps

It is a web mapping service which is given to free by Google and it can be utilized to discover locations in any piece of the world. It is exceedingly helpful for the route business and furthermore for organizations. As an entrepreneur, you can construct your professional resource through Google maps by making a record at Google Places or Local Business Center

The pictures you see on a Google Street View map are taken by cameras mounted on unique autos. Every vehicle carries nine cameras that together take a 360-degree “full hover” photo of a zone.

Propelled software then electronically “pastes” the photos together, making a consistent view of a location. This makes it feasible for you to sit in your family room and take a virtual stroll through your town, New York City or much another landmass!

Google Street  View additionally utilizes “Google Trike” (tricycle) and snowmobiles to take photographs of walkways, ways and back roads where autos won’t fit.


Google Maps can be utilized to discover driving and strolling bearings between addresses. You need to enter the course mode and specify the addresses in the inquiry fields. The quickest location between the two locations is found and shows a picture of the excursion with a line demonstrating the whole course.

This application can show point by point road maps that can be additionally extended to uncover ranges in an extended frame, directly down to the person on foot level with the end goal that you can view from the road level and even from the square by piece level. A point to be noted when utilizing Google Maps is that places that are thickly populated are appeared in more detail, than those which are eagerly populated.


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Topographical Maps

More and more people find things of the past quite irrelevant at present. In fact topographical maps are one of these things many people may not give importance these days. You too might be one of these people. Why will you be interested in an old thing when you can conveniently use more advanced gears and gadgets anyways? I can assume you wouldn’t be attracted to free topographical maps if such things will be offered to you. But, believe me or not, time will come that this thing you are taking for granted would become the very thing you will need soon.

You have learned from school that a map is an illustrated representation of the earth’s surface and parts of it. Continents, countries, cities and villages are shown in a rectangular piece of paper to give you an aerial like view of how bodies of land and water are arranged. Topographical maps on the other hand come a little more detailed than regular maps. It is distinct because it depicts the earth’s surface through more specific contoured lines. These lines are the ones that link points of identical elevation on the land’s surface, be it above or below the reference surface. One of these points of reference is the mean sea level among others. These contours also enable the possibility of measuring the depths of the bodies of water, steepness of slopes and heights of mountains and valley.

At present, there are existing websites which gives out free topographic maps that people can utilize when the situation demands for it. It can be used when trekking, hunting, mountain climbing and even in emergency situations where GPS and other advanced gadgets are not accessible. You might not need it now but sooner or later, you will regret that you have not given it as much attention as you should have.

Others might as well ignore it since they don’t even know how to use this certain kind of map. Reading a topographical map is as easy as one-two-three if you pay a little more attention. All you need to do is to grab one and get acquainted with the lines, colors and images depicted on the map. Each icon included in it stands for a particular thing. The capability of determining what these icons stand for will help you big time by the moment you will need its help.


You need to distinguish a topographic from a regular map. Topographic maps are three dimensional while a regular map is only two dimensional. The topographic map shows more detailed information which includes land’s contours, elevation, vegetation bodies of water, land as well as infrastructures within certain areas. Next, you must learn to interpret the lines, colors and symbols in it. Lines can either be straight, dash, solid or a combination thereof. These varying lines represent contours, roads, boundaries and many others. You will be able to observe various colors in the map such as blue, green, brown, red, black and purple as well. Each color represents a specific thing such as bodies of water and vegetation. Various symbols would include different shaped infrastructures, bridges, houses and more.

You must not wait for tomorrow before learning what you need to learn. Things of the past may be a little boring but such things may be the only way to go in certain times.



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What is a map legend?


Maps and charts use stylized shapes and symbols and in addition basic map hues to designate elements, for example, mountains, parkways and urban communities. The legend is a small box or table with the map that clarifies the implications of those symbols. The legend may likewise incorporate a map scale for help in deciding separations.

Designing a Map Legend

If you are designing a map and legend you may concoct your own symbols and hues or you may depend on standard arrangements of icons, contingent upon the motivation behind your delineation.

Legends normally show up close to the bottom of a map or around the external edges. They might be put outside or inside the map. If putting the legend inside the map, set it apart with an unmistakable frame or border and don’t conceal any vital segments of the map. While the style can differ, a run of the mill legend has a segment with the symbol taken after with a segment portraying what that symbol represents.

Position the legend on the map and incorporate every one of the symbols used on the map in the legend.

Keep the legend (and the map) as straightforward and simple to peruse as would be prudent. This isn’t the ideal opportunity for a favor design.

The style of the legend should match the style of the map itself.

Making the Map

Before you make the legend you require the map. Maps are mind boggling designs. The designer’s test is to make them as straightforward and clear as conceivable without excluding any vital information. Most maps contain similar sorts of components, yet the treatment of the components is in the designer’s hands:




Mapped territories (objects, land, water)




As you work in your designs software, use layers to isolate the different sorts of components and to arrange what can wind up being an entangled document. Finish the map before you set up the legend.

Symbol and Color Selection

You don’t need to reexamine the wheel with your map and legend.

It might be best for your peruser if you don’t. Thruways and streets are normally spoken to by lines of an assortment of widths, contingent upon the measure of the street, and joined by interstate or course names. Water is normally demonstrated by the shading blue. Dashed lines demonstrate borders. A plane demonstrates an air terminal.

Look at your symbols text styles. Your may as of now have what you requirement for your map, or scan online for a map text style or a PDF that illustrates the different map symbols. Microsoft makes a map symbol text style. The National Park Service offers map symbols that are free and in the general population space.

Be reliable in the use of symbols and text styles all through the map and legend and simplify, simplify, simplify. The objective is to make the map and legend peruser well disposed, useful and exact. Maps often use symbols or hues to speak to things, and the map key clarifies what they mean. Map keys are often encloses the side of the map, and the information they give you is fundamental to understanding the map. Symbols in the key may be pictures or icons that speak to different things on the map. Infrequently the map may by colored or shaded, and the key clarifies what the hues and shades mean. The photo here demonstrates a case of a map key for a run of the mill guide.





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What are the symbols on a map?


There are different types of maps that are meant for different purposes.
A map shows relationships between elements of the space such as objects, religions, and themes.
Map symbols are characters, letters, drawings and shortened words representation used on a map to indicate an object or feature in the real world.
Map symbols are used to make the reading of maps easy and save space. A map always has a key of a list to interpret all the symbols used. Therefore, you don’t need to memorize the symbols often used in maps as there interpretation will be provided in the key. However, it will be easy if you are familiar with some of the symbols. If you are drawing your map, you can use your symbols, but remember you will have to put the key to explain the symbols.
There are many issues involved in the symbolization process. Some people may interpret objects differently from the others. Cartographers, however, is up to the task and try as much as possible not to use such symbols since they would lead to confusion by the map readers and learners. It is important to note that different symbols represent different features.

So what are some of the map symbols?
Some of the commonly used symbols in a map are explained below. However, there are numerous other symbols. Learning them would help you get familiarized and add to what you already know concerning maps.

Contour lines
Contour lines are some of the popular map symbols. They join places of similar elevation. They are accurate, self-explanatory and naturally represent their phenomena. They can indicate height, depth, and steepness of an area. The closer the lines, the steeper the area.

Shaded Area or Polygon
Shaded area or polygon is another symbol commonly used in maps. It represents a neighborhood or a cluster of houses. Individual houses may be shown by a small dot or a square. A cross may symbolize a landmark like a church, and a town hall may be given a particular color or symbol.

Colors are used on a map to represent different features. For example, water bodies are represented by a blue color; boundaries are always marked in black color, contours in brown while roads and grids in red. Boundary lines are usually broken or dotted to differentiate from roads or streams. The red color also indicates areas of importance. Forests, vegetation, national parks and wildlife management are commonly shaded green.

Comprehending maps, keys and the symbols associated with them will always play a major role in your education, even with technological advances. For both educational and safety purposes, you need to know your area, neighborhood, and landmarks. Not to mention the fact that learning how to give directions and map reading is an important part of basic literacy skills for everyone.It is important to learn the symbols and how to interpret them.The map can be worthless if you have no idea about the symbols. But, it is not yet too late for you to learn the very basic symbols and methods used in reading maps. In fact, a little information could help you a lot whenever the situations call for it.


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History of Map Making

A map is a scale model or graphic representation of spatial concepts. Maps are the universal means of communication. The art of map making is known as cartography. This art involves aesthetics, combining science and technique, focusing on the premise that spatial information can be communicated effectively through ways that model the reality. Maps have been created to help man navigate easily throughout the world. Initially, maps were two dimensional but slowly the three-dimensional feature was introduced and this is evidenced by globes.

The first man known to have come up with a map was Anaximander. He drew the first map of the world in 6 BC, assuming that the shape of the earth was cylindrical in nature. On the other hand, the first person to draw a map assuming that the earth was spherical in nature was Eratosthenes.

Various types of maps include:

· Topographical maps

· General reference maps

· Navigation charts

· Thematic maps

· Cadastral maps


The early maps came to be about 5000 years ago. They generally depicted smaller areas as compared to the modern map. They were also pictorial in nature such that the traveler would record them as he went along his journey. However, the information pertaining to the map was not always accurate in relation to the earth. For one, features found at the edge of the map were not as detailed as those found in the center of the map.


During this period, most of the maps were being produced within monasteries and as a result, religious zeal dominated most of the mapping. Examples of such religious developments include:

· Jerusalem was put right in the middle of the world map.

· The maps were greatly decorated with imaginary monsters and angels.


At this stage, quite a number of changes significantly affected mapping:

· The Americas were discovered and so this brought about the need for an expansion of the maps.

· In 1440 Johannes Gutenberg invented the printing press. As a result of the monasteries no longer has=d the domination over map making.

· There was an increment in public learning and this brought about the thirst for knowledge. As a result, the French Academy of Science was established in 1666 whereby the scientific research took place including the improvement of map making and navigation charting.

· There was a steady growth in the number of publishing houses, and they all produced maps which were now available for every citizen and not just the wealthy elite.

All the above factors significantly contributed to the expansion of geographical knowledge. Earlier on, all maps were a mere black and white but in the late 1700s, a theme seemed to emerge. Such themes were used to mark specific places, for example, a place where a contagious disease was widely spread.


Nowadays, through the help of surveying techniques and satellite systems, cartographers are able to come up with up to scale maps of not only high precision but also consistency. Consequently, maps have definitely become critical to many fields of our endeavors.



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Map making may seem like a dying art, and with GPS being accessible to most everyone I suppose it is. To me that is even more reason to preserve it.  Like everything though, map making had to start somewhere.  Take a look at this video I found that has a brief history of map making.