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Happy New Year! I hope you had a pleasant holiday season. Global warming notwithstandning, we are already off to a record-breaking winter. To avoid tragedies outdoors, stay prepared, and keep warm clothing close by!
Our January issue is in the mail. We increased the size of this edition and enhanced the layout, I reckon you'll like it! With a foot in the past and an eye to the future, we continually celebrate all things surveying.
There's lots of great content this month which you can see by scrolling down. And I provide a behind-the-scenes look in the Spotlight below. As always please don't hesitate to contact me if you've got a project or 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]
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Editorial: Another Year...
The saying used to be Another Day, Another Dollar, so I'm tempted to say Another Year... but I'm not so sure about the another dollar part. In the current never-ending recession, which by now, all of us recognize as the New Normal, I continue to hear about a few bright spots in our ....
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Justin Barton
Digital Heritage: Data Density for Cultural Heritage
In October, the non-profit CyArk launched its "500 Challenge", a global initiative to use LiDAR and other advanced 3D imaging technologies to digitally preserve 500 cultural heritage sites within the next five years. This initiative is driven by the need to document our collective built human ....
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Marc Cheves, PS 
FieldTech—Surveying Technology Essentials
Juniper's latest offering featires a bright, amazingly crisp 4.3-inch IllumiView™ display, easily readable in direct sunlight. Another standout feature is its custom Overtime Technology™ battery, designed to last up to 20+ hours, and built with shocking ....
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Michael J. Pallamary, PS 
Angle Points: Having a License Doesn't Make You an Expert
There is a common misconception by many licensees that being authorized to practice land surveying makes one an instant expert. Regrettably, this is not true. Recognition as an expert is bestowed by those practitioners who have been subjected to the rigors of a hostile evaluation and the ....
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Andy Ambrose & Bill Chupka, PS 
Mountain Sheep Lake (Then and Now)
When I asked my long time friend Andy Ambrose if he would be up for a backpack/fishing trip this summer, he immediately said he would like to go. Since fishing is Andy's real passion, I asked him to choose our destination. I was excited to hear that ....
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Walt Robillard, PS 
The Forgotten Surveyor on the Mountain
Over the years I have had the privilege of receiving numerous state surveying society publications. At least once a year a photograph of a member and/or his family is depicted standing like the Sphinx with the carvings of Mt. Rushmore as a ....
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Mark Silver 
Sailing with the Pirate Surveyors
Last week I went out to the office yard here in Salt Lake City to test some GPS receivers. When I turned on my base radio, I noticed there was someone else already using my favorite radio frequency (461.025 MHz.) I thumbed through each of the 14-frequencies programmed in my radio ....
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C. Barton Crattie, LS, CFM 
A Journey's End—Families and the Osgood, Indiana Bilby
"God bless Jasper." Said more with wistful sincerity than humor, Russell Arnold was reflecting on his time on the survey. The evening was a reunion of some gentlemen all proud to have had the honor of spending careers on the National Geodetic Survey. Another reunion of sorts would begin ....
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Wendy Lathrop, PS 
Vantage Point: Why Your Bid Failed
Recently I've been part of two different evaluation teams to hire contractors for two different kinds of work related to recovery from Superstorm Sandy. In each instance I had to rate applicants on a form requiring evaluation of various aspects of technical experience and ....
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Product Review: X90-OPUS
The next big thing in precision GPS might not be new technological features, but rather the significant drop in the cost of investment. Thirteen years ago Dad invested $12,000 in our first three GPS receivers, the Ashtech Locus. Small, simple, capable, and affordable, these receivers were exactly ....
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The Curt Brown Chronicles: Brilliant Boner
Boners in legal descriptions may be classified as careless or brilliant. Omission of words, misspelling, and errors in grammar or punctuation are needless, careless mistakes. But upon occasion, a man, after due and careful deliberation as based upon a little knowledge, comes to a ....
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Gregory R. Haynes, PS 
Notes from His Decrepitude—An Aging Land Surveyor Shares
I come from a family of Land Surveyors. My father, William R. Haynes, was a Licensed Land Surveyor in private practice in Orange County, California. He was the founder of the business that later came to be called Hall and Foreman. His father before him, Walter R. Haynes, worked as a ....
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feature Our latest issue above. For those of you who have been following the Bilby Tower story, the Couba tower has finally been re-erected in Osgood, Indiana, the home of Jasper Bilby. Bart Crattie provides a poignant look at a bygone era and the families that made up the observing parties. The image at right is from Northome, Minnesota and shows a lightkeeper orienting lights for distant observers.

Of particular note in this issue is the article by California surveyor Greg Haynes that I'm sure will resonate with many of you. In the article he makes the case against a mandatory four-year degree for survey licensure. I wholeheartedly support Greg's right to his own opinion, even if I disagree with it. And of course, to me the common sense solution has always been a combination of both education and experience. Technology—the ability to hit a button and get a wrong answer—revealed the educational weakness in our profession, but for sure, mentoring and years of experience are required to adequately protect the public when it comes to boundary surveys.

Some of you might remember our June 2009 cover that showed Surveyor's Notch in Wyoming. The author, Bill Chupka, is back, this time with a backpacking/fishing excursion into the Wind River Range to look for the spot where an 1870s photograph of an early day topographer was taken. I told Bill I suspect a lot of "city" surveyors will yearn wistfully for the ability to have such fun after reading his account.

Tons more great content in this issue, including a Shawn Billings review of a purpose-built OPUS receiver, and a great story by the legendary Walt Robillard about why the common wisdom about Three Surveyors and Some Other Guy on Mount Rushmore is just flat wrong. Another article which falls in the Listen Up! category is Mark Silver's informative piece about radio licenses. I suspect most of you have no idea what kind of financial liability you risk by not properly licensing your radios. A word to the wise...

ILMF 2014: February 17-19, Denver, Colorado USA

The International LiDAR Mapping Forum is a technical conference and exhibition focused on the use of airborne, terrestrial and bathymetric LiDAR and mobile mapping systems. ILMF spotlights the use of LiDAR to support transport, urban modeling, coastal zone mapping, land and natural resource management, utility asset management, 3D visualization, GIS and other applications.


Juniper Systems’ Allegro MX Selected for Invasive Fish Removal Program
Garden State Land Surveyors Alliance to Host Seminars January 16-18
Calabi Yau Systems Announce Release of LD3 Studio 6.0 Software Suite
ASPRS Appoints Dr. Michael Hauck as Executive Director
VRMesh Triangulation for AutoCAD 2014 Beta Available
Hemisphere GNSS Announces Management Changes
Nonresidential Construction Spending After Government Shutdown
ZEB1 Laser Scanner Put Through its Paces at World’s Deepest Gold Mine
Skybox Unveils World’s First High-Resolution Video of Earth from Space
OnPOZ EZSurv GNSS Software is Now Compatible With Galileo And Beidou
GeoCue Announces Release of LP360 2013.2
A&M-Corpus Christi Student Completes Entire Degree Online from Afghanistan
A Modern Compass Improves Oil Production
GE and ikeGPS Improve Utility Worker Efficiency with Mobile MapSight Device
Quantum Spatial Partners with Hawkeye Helicopter for LiDAR Collection
Blue Marble Solidifies Partnerships with International Resellers
SuperSurv 3.1a for Android Supports WMTS Service
Juniper Systems’ Complete Care Plans Take the Worry Out
U.S.’s First Safety Institute Built Using Only American-Made Materials
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    E-Magazine - December 2013: Vol. 10, #12
    • The CST Program • BOSH!!!Tallest Structure • Celebrating the Stargazer • Triumph in San Jose • CST Exam  • Bolivia  • Santa Ana vs. Baca  • Curt Brown  • Feedback  • Vantage Point ...and more!
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