This newsletter for February 4, 2015 will be archived at

line News / Current Issue / Archives / Photos / Subscriptions / eMagazine
LiDAR / Machine Control / GIS / LBS / Survey History / RSS Feed line
Snowmageddon15 Round 2 has rampaged across the country. Hope you are safe and warm wherever you are. The bizarrely-ending Super Bowl 49 has come and gone, and I hope the team you were rooting for won. Now it's time to get back to work!
Our February issue is distributing, and as usual it's got a lot of great surveying content. Skip Theberge's final installment of artillery surveyors in WW2 is leading the Hit Parade. Close behind is great Curt Brown wisdom from 1964. In third place is an interesting lesson in geography from Jerry Penry.
Following that is letters to the editor, which I discuss more in Spotlight below. Please scroll down to see the rest of the line-up, and don't hesitate to contact me if you've got a surveying story you'd like to share.
Until next time,
Marc Cheves, PS
The American Surveyor

[Send your comments, announcements, tips, gripes, or kudos to Marc]
Sponsored by SimActive

SimActive’s Correlator3D™ software is a patented end-to-end photogrammetry solution for the generation of high-quality geospatial data from satellite and aerial imagery, including UAVs. Correlator3D™ performs aerial triangulation (AT) and produces dense digital surface models (DSM), digital terrain models (DTM), orthomosaics and vectorized 3D features. Powered by GPU technology and multi-core CPUs, Correlator3D™ ensures matchless processing power to support rapid production of large datasets. For more information, please visit

Editorial: The Fire Alarm
Based on the reaction to our exposé of an attempt to remove boundary experience from the requirements to sit for a licensing exam, we seem to have struck a nerve. An educator from New Mexico chastised me for allowing the magazine to be "divisive, vilify the efforts of other ....
Read the Article
Wendy Lathrop
Vantage Point: Introducing TMAC-2
One of the closing suggestions of the first Technical Mapping Advisory Council to FEMA (TMAC-1), which convened from 1996 through 2000, was for an ongoing advisory group of technical users, something more permanent than its own five-year statutory span. The recommendations of TMAC-1 ....
Read the Article
Michael J. Pallamary, PS 
The Curt Brown Chronicles: The Future for the Land Surveyor
Curt Brown spent a considerable amount of time and energy in advancing the interests of the profession and, as he astutely noted, notwithstanding the evolution of measuring equipment, the fundamentals components of the profession merit consideration and attention. Then, as now, the future ....
Read the Article
Jason E. Foose, PS 
The HP 35s Calculator—A Field Surveyor's Companion—Part 5-Inverse to a Line or Perpendicular Offset
This program is comparable to "inverse to line" and "station/offset" routines. The user enters a base point and defines a direction by point or azimuth, then selects a third point for reference. I use this routine frequently ....
Read the Article
Natalie Binder 
Moving London Safely Forward
Paddington Station, ­famous worldwide not only for its creator Isambard Kingdom Brunel, but also for a small marmalade loving bear. Built in 1854, Paddington Station is a fine example of an English Heritage grade 1 listed building and is site to the ....
Read the Article
Smith, Roman, Youngman 
Recent Activities at the National Geodetic Survey—Part 2 of 4
The Gravity for the Redefinition of the American Vertical Datum (or GRAV-D) project got off the ground, literally, in 2007 when NGS's first airborne gravity flights took place. Today the GRAV-D airplanes continue to fly! With a second airborne gravimeter acquired in December 2011, NGS has been ....
Read the Article
Jerry Penry, PS 
The Pole of Inaccessibility
The most challenging location to reach due to its remoteness from geographical features is known as a pole of inaccessibility. Generally, this calculated position is furthest from any coastline and would be the location where you would least like to be ....
Read the Article
Larry Trojak 
Use of Total Station Spawns Improvements in Salmon Monitoring Program
Think surveying equipment and it's not likely that an organization working to ensure the survival of the Pacific Northwest's salmon population comes to mind. Yet that is precisely what's ....
Read the Article
Albert “skip” Theberge 
Artillery Surveyors in WWII—Africa & Europe: Part 3: Survey Officers
Lieutenant Colonel Earle Deily, on loan from the USC&GS, was Survey Officer for the V Corps and the 17th Field Artillery Observation Battalion providing survey control to the battalion, training survey teams, and advising the V Corps Artillery Commander. He helped plan for the D-Day invasion and ....
Read the Article
I read with great interest your editorial and comments concerning Chad and Linda Erickson's article on an Idaho initiative to redefine the definition of surveying in Idaho state statutes. I am not familiar with the specifics of what is being proposed and will leave it to others to decide the ....
Read the Article
Bill Chupka, PS 
100 Years Too Late?
There have been times in my life when I had more than just a foot in the past. Ever feel like you are one of those people who was born a hundred years too late? I remember feeling that way at times when I was young, but I was able to put all those thoughts to rest this summer over the span ....
Read the Article
SPAR International: Register Now

SPAR International is the only platform-neutral conference and exhibition focused on 3D technologies and business considerations for surveyors, AECs, EPCs, Facility Managers, asset owners/operators and other stakeholders.

March 30-April 2, 2015, Houston, Texas. For more info visit


As FeedBack shows, some are questioning our motives here at the magazine, but as you can see by reading my editorial, we are merely providing a voice for surveyors. I spoke with Jerry Carter, the NCEES Executive Director, and he explained that because each state makes up its own rules, there can be no moves within NCEES to change the experience requirement. David Widmer, PS, the current NCEES President, will be writing a rebuttal to my editorial.

So, I stand corrected, NCEES is not behind the move to water down the requirements. Which begs the question, who is? Since this started in Idaho, it must have been someone in that state. I hope that someone will take ownership. I explained to Jerry that this is a big deal to surveyors, a line in the sand if you will, so it'll be interesting to see if the pulling of the fire alarm continues to make it a non-threat.

Another disappointment is the news that FEMA, after saying it would do something, has done nothing about all the people in San Diego who are being forced to pay for flood insurance when their homes are obviously nowhere near a floodplain. This is a national scandal, and homeowners across te country are being unfairly taxed. Some think it's to pay for Katrina and Sandy, but as Mike Pallamary has written in a series of articles about FEMA, part of the reason is collusion between FEMA and property owners to remove or lessen the premiums. We will be bringing this matter up again.

Equally as disturbing is a new Supreme Court decision setting the coastal boundary of California viz a viz federal ownership. Trouble is, the boundary was set using a GIS map of low accuracy and questionable datum. A large article by Mike Pallamary will appear in our March issue. GIS is a marvelous tool, and can provide many benefits, but boundaries ain’t one of them. Ever heard of neighbors being interested in and fighting over only a few inches?

Sponsored by Certainty 3D

TopoDOT™ is a CAD application for extracting high quality models from LiDAR system data. Integrating TopoDOT's comprehensive tool suite for processing with the existing CAD capabilities of MicroStation™, PowerSurvey™ and PowerMap™ products has yielded a low cost application unrivalled in productivity and performance.

TopoDOT will "MAeX" the value of your LiDAR data.
Manage. Assess. eXtract.


Altus to Showcase at World of Concrete 2015
Winners of the Fifth Annual ION Autonomous Snowplow Competition
Investment in Nonresidential Structures Expands Moderately in Fourth Quarter
Dewberry Selected to Support GRAV-D Missions for NGS
Optech Announces Opening of Registration and Call for Papers for ILSC 2015
Citizen Scientists Submit More Than 100,000 Map Points
NOAA Satellites Helped in the Rescue of 240 People Last Year
International LiDAR Mapping Forum: Sold Out Exhibits
Leverage BIM Models for Better and Faster Decisions on Site and in the Field
Alex Lincoln Named President of Fenstermaker
Ordnance Survey, Finding a Way Round a GPS Road Block
Esri Story Map Asks Which Super Bowl Team Has Better Fans
Scene Sharp Receives $500,000 Investment from Government of Canada
GeoNorth Announces New Director of Sales, Federal Programs
First Mobile Laser Scanning of Forth Bridges Leads to £300k Project Greenlight
New Orleans Heritage Preserved with Pointfuse 3D Models
Topcon Announces Sponsorship of REAL 2015
Got News? Drop a line to press [at] or Contact Us

  • LiDAR News - >>
  • Geospatial News - >>
  • Land Surveying News - >>
  • Machine Control News - >>

  • LiDAR News RSS Feed - LiDAR News FeedBurn >> Get our LiDAR News RSS feed
  • Geospatial RSS Feed - GISuser FeedBurn >> Get our GISuser RSS feed
  • Land Surveying RSS feed - Amerisurv FeedBlitz >> Get our Land Surveying RSS feed
  • Machine Control RSS Feed - Machine Control FeedBurn >> Get our Machine Control RSS feed
  • line
    Sponsored by Berntsen International

    Berntsen International, Inc. has been “Marking the Infrastructure of the World” for over 40 years as the largest manufacturer and supplier of survey markers, monuments and related accessories.

    We are dedicated to supporting the profession of surveying with the best made products and service available.


    This section is an update about surveying and other geospatial conferences, training, seminars, webinars, and relevant events. Feel free to make a suggestion for future consideration. For a complete listing of events, please visit our online calendar HERE.
    Send your event info to editor[at]


    E-Magazine - January 2015: Vol. 12, #1
    • End of Topo?  • FieldTech  • Chardonnay  • Curt Brown Chronicles  • HP35s  • Business Lessons  • NGS  • Triumph-LS  • Building a Client Base  • Artillery Surveyors  • Feedback  • High-Tech Railway ..and more!
    E-Magazine - November/December 2014: Vol. 11, #11
    • Perfect Storm  • Book Review  • Title Washing  • Curt Brown Chronicles  • HP35s  • Ben Kacyra  • Boundary Surveying  • Two-Million Dollar Home  • Artillery Surveyors  • Art Project ..and more!

    Did-U-Know has compiled a state-by-state list of free imagery HERE

    bookHistoric Map Collection — A map of General Washington's farm of Mount Vernon from a drawing transmitted by the General. CREATED/PUBLISHED [S.l., 1801] NOTES Removed from: Letters from His Excellency George Washington, to Arthur Young, [etc.]. London, 1801. Scale 1:6,336. This map is 23"x18".

    Printed on high-quality photo paper, this poster is capable of being a center-piece for any room or space. These unique reproductions are both fascinating and sure to please.

    Our maps and posters make excellent gifts for clients or employees!

    Become a Certified Survey Technician (CST)

    This four-level certification program indicates official recognition by NSPS that a person can perform surveying tasks at a specific technical level. Certification provides employers with a method of determining job assignments and advancement since certification is an indication of one's ability to perform specific job tasks. Increase your skills. Enhance your career opportunities. Set a straight course to your future. Become a Certified Survey Technician (CST)! Visit the NSPS site for details.


    ADVERTISING with Spatial Media (Amerisurv, GISuser, LiDAR News, etc.)
    Request our Electronic Media Planner - complete with rates and promotion options. Connect with our large, targeted audience of Land Surveyors, Civil Engineers, GISusers, LBS professionals, SmartPhone Developers, technology managers, and other key decision makers.

    About | Privacy Policy
    © 2015, Spatial Media LLC
    905 West Seventh Street, #331
    Frederick, Maryland, 21701 USA