January 2020
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What happened to Google Maps

Thanks to Mike Carson and SoCalGIS.org for passing this along – one of the better cartography notes that I have seen about balancing features vs. labels. I highly recommend reading this if you make maps, or even if you use Google Maps!


10 tips for cartography

Hello everyone,

I was pointed to a nice blog post about some tips for making beautiful maps, and wanted to share the link with everyone. I like how it brings the design aspect of cartography and graphics into the picture. Especially with our map gallery at ESRI coming up, I thought this was good […]

Slate article saves cartographer!

If you might recall, I posted a “must read” article about a great cartographic map.

Well – there is a nice back-story now (thanks Kayla Folkins from Pasadena for passing this along) about how all of the posting saved this person’s business!


Still lots of interest in maps, I guess!

Must Read – The Greatest Paper Map of the United States You’ll Ever See

US Map

This is a must read for all GIS folks! It’s a quick read.

Isaac Martinez from CSS forwarded this link to me. This is one of the best articles about the art of making maps, and why good maps take a long time to make. If you use the […]

Making your topo maps more interesting …


For our County cartographers who want to get technical – this article at the ESRI Support Blog immediately caught my attention in terms of better visualization of our data. It has very detailed instructions which is always good:



Take a look and have fun!

ESRI provides new “canvas” basemaps for map sandwiches


ESRI Map Canvas

James Fee’s blog pointed me to this new release about “canvas” basemaps, which are designed specifically to improve the visualization of data on top of maps since they are very subtle. I think our maps may end up going this way as well – the […]

Calabasas Annexation – Updated Caches for LA County

The City of Calabasas just completed an annexation into the Unincorporated County. The eGIS team has just completed updating the map caches to reflect this change.

At the same time this gave me the opportunity to make a number of other changes that reflect improved cartography.

These changes affect two map caches:

The LACounty_StreetMap Cache […]

Google Maps, Bing Maps, and Label Readability


Nick Franchino, via John Calas, sent me an excellent link!

For you mapmakers out there, the link below is an excellent discussion of how Google is making its maps more readable – it is an excellent set of information!