American Society of Civil Engineers

Computer Assisted Cartography: Graphics or Geometry?

by Andrew U. Frank, (Univ. of Maine, Dept. of Civ. Engrg., 103 Bordman Hall, Orono, Me. 04469)

Journal of Surveying Engineering, Vol. 110, No. 2, August 1984, pp. 159-168, (doi:

     Access full text
     Permissions for Reuse  

Document type: Journal Paper
Abstract: A classification of interactive graphic systems, currently used to prepare plans and maps in surveying practice, is presented. The first generation of systems are graphics editors storing drawings that can be graphically changed and redrawn. A second generation of systems provides the same functionality as the first, but the user can add certain types of information to the graphical elements (e.g., tube diameter or material). The state-of-the-art third generation of systems internally stores models of reality, drawings and reports produced in varying formats are just operations to make these internal models visible to the user. Such systems can automatically maintain constraints on the model during changes. This classification seems to reflect a very general trend in computer applications toward systems that integrate an increasing amount of knowledge about reality.

ASCE Subject Headings:
Computer aided drafting
Computer applications
Graphic methods