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Home arrow Archives   The American Surveyor     

Software Review: I-Site Studio 3.0 and 4400 Laser Scanner
It seems that every surveying magazine now overflows with stunning 3D images of everything from people, to cars, to historic landmarks, to infrastructure. Point clouds of intricate structures and shapes naturally captivate the geometrically adept mind. But what about the ...
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Software Review: Topocad 9 from Chaos Systems
Topocad from Chaos System comes to us from Sweden. In this day and age more and more municipalities are requesting some form of surveying and engineering work that can be incorporated into their local GIS, so having a program that...
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Software Review: Prefiniti from Center Line Services
Bob Stevenson, a well-known and respected New Mexico surveyor*, once told me that a surveyor could make good money doing lot and block surveys for title companies. I thought he was probably right, but at the time survey inspection reports, or whatever they are called in your area, were equivalent to ...
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Software Review: Adapx Digital Pen and Capturx for ArcGIS
It all started with Dick Tracy and his radio wrist watch. Now we have a pen that is a data collector. The Adapx digital pen is both Bluetooth-enabled and a USB device. The pen weighs just over an ounce and is about the size of an average ballpoint pen. Communication is either ...
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Software Review MicroSurvey CAD 2008
MicroSurvey CAD 2008 (MSCAD) represents the latest incarnation of their popular desktop drafting software. MSCAD is a fully integrated COGO and design suite developed for the IntelliCAD platform, specifically, IntelliCAD version 6.4. For those of you unfamiliar with...
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Software Review: General CADD
Backward compatibility has always been one of the things that make a good solid product. General CADD started out as an inexpensive CADD program working in DOS. Generic CADD was the name and it made it possible for surveyors who could not afford the very...
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Software Review: Carlson SurvNet Network Least Squares Adjustment Software
Many of today's surveyors began their careers with the chain and transit. As many of you will recall, even though electronic distance measuring technology had been around for a while, wide spread acceptance of EDM instruments did not occur until the late 1970s to early 1980s. The chain is simple, easy to ...
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Software Review: cvlTracker by cvlSoft, Inc.
There are two kinds of surveyors/engineers ≠ bosses and employees. If all you ever want to be is an employee, you can probably skip this review. However, if you ever want to open your own office or become the head of the organization you work for, then pay attention. Many states now require a fouryear degree for ...
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Software Review: Ez-Adjust
In Part One I discussed a small part of Ez-Adjust dealing with Four-Parameter Coordinate Transformation and compared it to other programs that offer analysis of the fit of two coordinate systems. Least-squares programs have two sides. The first is adjustment. The second is ...
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Software Review: Pythagoras Pro
Pythagoras is a beautiful CAD software program with maximum flexibility. Figure 1 shows the opening screen. You can work in just about any global or local coordinate system but you can always view the drawing coordinates and the drawing ...
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Software Review: ptbase by CBI Systems, Ltd.
For the past five years I have encouraged every software developer with which I have had contact to provide surveyors and engineers with a simple Geographic Information System (GIS). In this issue we'll take a look at a GIS called ptbase (pronounced "point base"), which comes from ...
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Software Review: Autodesk Civil 3D 2005
Autodesk has come out with a superior design package, Civil 3D 2005. How is it different from Land Desktop 2004? At first glance, not very. Of course they had to move the commands around just to annoy me but I admit that most changes were improvements. So, if you can do everything in ...
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Software Review: Manifold System
This review requires some background. My county has a Geographic Information System (GIS) parcel base. It delineates boundaries. Should it be under the control of a planner, a computer specialist, a geographer or a surveyor? I believe that this is the most important question that needs to be resolved in this ...
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Software Review: SiteComp Survey
It's a simple name for an extraordinary program. SiteComp Survey does all the things that surveyors do; it just does them better. It does not require any other program. First and most important is the fact that Survey is a point-based system. Every line or figure in the drawing is based on points in the ...
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Software Review: XMap, XMap/GIS Analyst, XMap/GIS Editor and GPS PostPro 2.0
XMap is DeLorme's basic mapping package, and it is a remarkable set of programs. XMap/GIS Analyst contains tools for GIS analysis and all of the functionality of XMap. XMap/GIS Editor contains ...
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Software Review: Geographic Calculator, 6.0
The Geographic Calculator, from Blue Marble Geographics, is the kind of utility program that allows the average surveyor to swim around in the geodetic pool without drowning. They might have called it the geodetic surveying calculator. I have been using the Geographic Calculator for many ...
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 American Surveyor Recent Articles
Thought Leader: NCEES Forum on the Future of Surveying
On June 10-11, 2016, the Forum on the Future of Surveying (Forum) under the auspices of the National Council of Examiners for Engineering and Surveying (NCEES) was hosted by the Louisiana Professional Engineers and Land Surveyors Board (LAPELS) offices in Baton Rouge, Louisiana ....
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Jerry Penry, PS 
The Gold Tree
The Wildcat Hills are a scenic area of buttes and canyons forested with pine and cedar located in the Panhandle region of Nebraska between the North Platte River and Pumpkin Creek. In the 1830-60's, early emigrants passed through the northern ....
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Fulvio Bernardini 
Catching the Right Train
At work in his ground floor office in full view of passers-by, Diego Callegari had no idea that his career would take a new turn that day in 2001. Pictures of a survey that Zenit Topografia--the surveying firm owned by Callegari and Nicola Rebora ....
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Lieutenant Charles Pierce Part 1: The California Coast 1932--1933
During the 1930's there was a huge geodetic surveying effort as thousands of men were hired on various federal projects meant to help mitigate the high unemployment of the Depression Era. Charles Pierce (not to be confused with the great Coast Survey scientist and philosopher Charles Sanders ....
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Eric Stahlke, PS 
The Final Voyage Part 12
I kept a journal on the Seloohge, these are the final pages: August 16: The area we are working now, on the Yukon between Ruby and Tanana, is a remote and beautiful stretch of river with a different climate than we experienced on the lower Yukon ....
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Dr. Mathias Lemmens 
EDM Without Reflectors
A total station is an angle measuring device, also known as theodolite, integrated with an electronic distance meter (EDM). The integration provides the ability to measure angles and distances by the same instrument which gives the surveyor a leap in portability, convenience and speed ....
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Michael J. Pallamary, PS 
Angle Points: A Surveyor's Crossword Puzzle
2. Unit Of Measurement    5. A Measuring Component    7. In The Hills    9. River Component    10. Four Parts    12. Publisher    16. Line Of Elevation    18. Chaining Pin    19. Map By Colors    22. Way To Map    23. Geometric Shape    26. Above The Center    27. Rotation Of Flight Line ....
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Dave Lindell, PS 
Test Yourself: Angles, Angles, Angle
Given: parallelogram ABCD, AE bisector of angle BAD, AE & BC extended meet at F, Q is center of circle passing through points F, C, and E, angle BQD is 1120. What is angle QBD? ....
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Michael J. Pallamary, PS 
The Curt Brown Chronicles: Line Trees
When the original section lines of the U. S. sectionalized land system were run, especially in forested areas, it was not uncommon for original surveyors to mark line trees in accordance with the instructions issued by the Surveyor General. The following question was raised by R. E. Schmeling on ....
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Wendy Lathrop, PS, CFM 
Vantage Point: Pop-Ups and Zoning
The term "pop-up" has several meanings, but is not widely known outside of urban areas. As I'll use it today, it will not be the compact expandable camper. It also will not refer to adding a story to crown a row house (currently the source of a great zoning battle in Washington, DC ....
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