This newsletter for June 9th, 2010 will be archived at

line News / Blog / Current Issue / Article Archives / Flickr Photos / Survey History
RTN-101 / GIS / LBS / Subscriptions / Contact / RSS Feed line
Greetings from The American Surveyor! In between our published issues, there’s always lots to report on, so we’ll be keeping you up-to-date with an additional newsletter in between.
New Page-Flip Edition Available...
Our latest magazine is in the mail and tracking well on For those of you who prefer a digital “page-flip” version, each issue is also available online in our Archives section. These page-flip editions have been around for some time, usually as a bolt-on service from magazine printers. We chose to wait for a solution that allowed us complete control, the ability to re-publish archived issues, etc.
Even if I do say so myself, it's kinda cool. As has been our tradition, we will continue to produce the PDFs of each article, but for those of you who want to see each magazine exactly as it was produced, ads and all, the flippy is a good route. Click HERE for the new edition.
Errata... No excuse, but I got a couple of things wrong in the last newsletter. First, I referred to Dr. Dave Gibson's school as “Florida State” in Gainesville. My apologies to you Gators–I should have said “University of Florida.” Second, I made up a new datum, the NGVD. Of course, I meant NAVD. Apologies to the datum gurus. And thanks to our readers for pointing these errors out.
Invitation to attend... Please note a couple of important events that are coming up. First is the JAVAD GNSS roll-out of three new products on June 29 in San Jose, California. Javad Ashjaee has been a force in the GNSS industry since the early 80s, having created several companies and being responsible for many precise GNSS developments. I've known Javad for many years and have always been impressed with his high regard for precise surveying. Regarding the three new products, Javad says they are revolutionary. You can find out more and register to attend HERE.
Someone else who has always held surveyors in high regard is Jack Dangermond of ESRI. Each time we have spoken, he has gone out of his way to let me know how important surveyors are to the grand scheme of things. ESRI will be holding its annual Surveying and Engineering Summit again in July. As I mentioned in my recent article about Civic Engineering & IT in Nashville, Civic diversified well before the land development downturn, and as a result has developed a reputation for GIS skills and extreme measurement and positioning expertise. I encourage you to consider attending the Summit if you can make it. There's money to be made with the measurement and positioning aspects of GIS! More information about the Summit can be found HERE.
Finally, at the recent ACSM conference in Phoenix, a flap developed over an NSPS motion to withdraw from ACSM. The motion caught several people off guard, and the resulting discussion has been emotional. I caught up with Tony Cavell (Louisiana NSPS Governor and Secretary to the Board of Governors) to get his take, and have compiled all the information HERE. My position on ACSM membership has always been clear: we surveyors need to support our national organization. But as Tony points out in his article, ROI must be shown for any membership organization.
As always, please don't hesitate to contact me if you've got a project or story you'd like to share.
Thanks for your support.
Until next time,
Marc Cheves, LS
The American Surveyor

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

REAL surveyors use REAL surveying software and leave the frustrations of CAD behind. Today, thousands of them use Traverse PC. Watch this 3-1/2 min video and see why or check out the short introduction videos on our web site. Then give us a call to save $400 on any Edition of TPC Desktop PLUS get a year of the TPC Connection FREE. Offer expires June 2010.

(800) 460-3002
Surveying software since 1987.

Editorial: Having the Right Tools
Earthquakes, blizzards, floods, tornadoes, erupting volcanoes, an oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico, financial and economic instability, political upheaval and thwarted terrorist plots--the theme song for the first half of 2010 could well be "Whole Lotta Shakin' Goin' On." USGS records show that ....
Read the Article
Civic Duty - A Visit to Civic Engineering and Information Technologies
We've shared them before--stories about surveyor fathers and the sons who not only followed in their footsteps, but took the career to a whole new level. Clifton Ogden grew up in ....
Read the Article
Phased Contracting
One of the biggest challenges in operating a profitable land surveying business is the impact of unexpected evidence and its effect on client relationships. Not surprisingly, the two are oftentimes related and when problems arise, it can affect one's business reputation along with ....
Read the Article
When Two Become One - A Look at the Law of Merger of Adjoining Parcels
A previously ignored fact buried in the hieroglyphics of a legal description suddenly presents possibilities to someone looking for value in their real estate, particularly in this economy ....
Read the Article
Building a Fully Functioning County GIS in Five Years
Five years ago Cochise County, Arizona embarked on a comprehensive plan to install a practical Geographical Information System. Today 300 county employees use it regularly. We attended the Arizona Geographic Information Council's 2009 Education and Training Seminar in Tucson in ....
Read the Article
3-D Laser Scanning 
Full Steam Ahead - Applying 3-D Laser Scanning to a Boiler Plant Replacement Project
The engineers of Sebesta Blomberg & Associates in Roseville, Minnesota faced a daunting task in documenting existing conditions within the two central boiler plants at ....
Read the Article
Reconnaissance: Rewriting Legal Descriptions
When presenting programs to persons in the title industry, the question is frequently asked about the tendency of some surveyors in some areas to write new descriptions for virtually any property they are surveying. The questions posed are often along the lines of "Why do they ....
Read the Comments
Vantage Point: Professionalism, Logic, and Law
Three out of the four states in which I am licensed have mandatory continuing education requirements for renewing my professional land surveying licenses. The fourth is one of a minority without such requirements, including eight other states, several territories, and ....
Read the Article
Which Came First? I just finished Chris Wickern's article "Whose Footsteps Are They?" [ 2010 Vol. 7 No. 3]. I enjoy the discussion points he puts forth. The cover photo was very true; I have a question about the location of the corner monument under the larger rock. Which came first—­the ....
Read the Comments
Surveyors Report: Licensure by Apprenticeship: Effects on the Surveying Profession
The image of land surveying as a technician/trade image is increasingly growing. I make a case for moving away from the apprenticeship system toward an educational standard. A 1525 English document gives ....
Read the Article
Sponsored by Laser Technology

You're bound to encounter the unexpected in the field. Not to worry, though. LTI lasers let you adapt to ever-changing conditions and situations by allowing you to position anything without occupying it. Learn more about GPS laser offsets at our site. While there, share your craziest day in the field and enter to win a laser!

Visit Laser Technology for more info.


feature The Passing of a GNSS Icon... It was with great sadness that we learned of the unexpected death of Stanislav "Stas" Sila-Novitsky in Moscow. In a fitting tribute to Stas, Glen Gibbons, the editor/founder of Inside GNSS wrote, "Around 1990, Sila-Novitsky joined Ashtech Inc., which had established a Moscow operation in the final years of the Soviet Union. It was the beginning of a 20-year relationship with Javad Ashjaee and the series of companies that the latter operated in Russia."

I first met Stas at the ION Conference in Long Beach. Besides being awed by his rocket scientist skills, I found him to be warm and helpful, especially in helping us to understand the Russian culture. Stas was not only a legend in the development of GLONASS, he was our friend as well. In all three of the trips we have made to Moscow, he always went out of his way to be a gracious host. He is pictured here at the 2008 JAVAD GNSS User Conference in Moscow (with the Triumph Palace, Javad's Moscow headquarters, in the background).

Gibbons’ article, plus a photographic tribute of American Surveyor photographs, can be found at HERE.

Sponsored by EngineerSupply

Factory-Authorized Dealer for the Most Trusted Names in the Industry. EngineerSupply is Authorized for Crain, Seco, CST/Berger, Sokkia, Topcon, Spectra Precision, Northwest Instruments, Rhino Tools, Rite-in-the-Rain, Calculated Industries, Alvin, Agatec, Rolatape, Planix, Lufkin, Leica Geosystems, Laser Line, Elan Field Books, David White, Bosch, and Apache.

EngineerSupply. Smart Products. Smarter Shopping.


Who Will Paddle Their Way to Concrete Victory?
Laser Scanning versus Photogrammetry? (Exclusive Online-only article)
Ambercore Announces New Vice-President Sales, Terrapoint USA
First Block IIF GPS Satellite PRN25/SVN62 Now Active
Free Geographic Data Helps Reveal Great Britain’s “Fraud Landscape”
Optech Acquires Photogrammetric Camera Company
Blue Marble Applied Geodesy Training After ESRI UC in San Diego, CA
Nonresidential Construction Employment Falls in May
China Sends Beidou Navigation Satellite to Orbit
New ESRI Press Book Delivers Practical Guidance to Geometrical and Physical Geodesy
Carlson’s New SurvPC Data Collection Software Provides SurvCE Power on a Windows PC
Nonresidential Construction Spending Bounces Up in April
Upgraded Getac E100 Fully Rugged Tablet PC Offers Most Comprehensive Features Ideal for Field Apps
Exclusive Interview Video - MachineControlOnline Interview With Ashtech GM/VP François Erceau
Trimble and Russian Space Systems Sign Agreement to Form Joint Venture in Russia
Topcon acquires InlandGEO
ESRI Launches and ArcGIS Explorer Online
Got News? Drop a line to press [at] or Contact Us

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

  • 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 Trimble

    TRIMBLE S8: THE POWER TO EXCEL The most demanding jobs require the most advanced total station in the industry. Whether you need solutions to drive productivity for day to day survey tasks or precision solutions for demanding engineering projects, the Trimble S8 is the most advanced total station solution available today.

    Visit Trimble for more information.


    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]
    Sponsored by Topcon

    Topcon's GRS-1 is the world's first fully integrated dual constellation network enabled RTK rover system. It is an all-in-one handheld GNSS receiver and field controller featuring high-speed processor, increased memory, built-in camera, digital compass, optional internal GSM or CDMA modem, and wireless connectivity via Wireless LAN and Bluetooth® wireless technology.

    Visit the Topcon GRS-1 for more information.


    Did-U-Know Glenn Letham at our sister site has compiled a state-by-state list of free imagery HERE

    bookHistoric Map Collection -- Map of the United States of America : with the contiguous British and Spanish possessions / compiled from the latest & best authorities by John Melish ; engraved by J. Vallance & H.S. Tanner. Melish, John, 1771-1822. CREATED/PUBLISHED Philadelphia : J. Melish, c1816. NOTES Relief shown pictorially. Prime meridians: London and Washington. Fifth state. Includes inset of the West Indies. Scale [1:3,900,000] (W 1180--W 640/N 530--N 230).. Note: This huge map is 23"x37"!

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

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


    Sponsored by Ashtech

    Ashtech ProMark 500 V4: More features, enhanced performance and a new price offer. Contact us today to learn more about the new RTK capabilities of the latest Ashtech GNSS receiver for land surveyors.

    Visit Ashtech for more information.


    ADVERTISING with Spatial Media LLC (Amerisurv, GISuser, LBSzone & SymbianOne)
    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
    (c) 2010, Spatial Media LLC
    905 West Seventh Street, #331
    Frederick, Maryland, 21701