Fifty Years in Surveying - Mapping - and the Future

by George D. Whitmore,

Serial Information: Journal of the Surveying and Mapping Division, 1969, Vol. 95, Issue 1, Pg. 143-150

Document Type: Journal Paper


The tools and techniques of surveying and mapping have undergone revolutionary changes during the last 50 years. Automatic levels and electronic distance-measuring instruments have simplified and speeded field survey work. Survey computations and adjustments that were executed by laborious, time-consuming methods are now carried out rapidly by means of electronic computers. Geodetic surveys of greatly increased accuracy can now be made with the aid of active and passive earth satellites. Photogrammetric procedures, which became the standard means for producing maps after World War II, are being further improved by the use of radar, infrared, color, and other remote-sensor techniques. Map-drafting methods using pen-and-ink drafting and copperplate engraving have been replaced by more efficient scribing procedures. Great strides have been made in the automation of various phases of cartography. New methods of map presentation, such as the orthophotomap, offer an improvement over conventional line maps in some instances.

Subject Headings: Mapping | Geomatic surveys | Automation | Distance measurement | Surveying instruments | Geodetic surveys | Satellites | Photogrammetry

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