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Hello Amerisurv user... Our April/May issue mailed last week, and as usual, it's full of great content. You can check it out by scrolling down, but I'd like to draw attention to a couple of the new articles: First is Jack Chiles' article about an old survey monument found in downtown Houston. When Jack first sent the images, the page from the 1914 fieldbook jumped out at me, and I knew that surveyors would appreciate its detail, so I asked our artists to make it large.
Second is John Wilusz' article about retracement (Contemplating Cooley). What attracted me to this article, other than the subject matter, was John's great maps. Of course, to see the fieldbook page or the maps, you'll need to click on the PDF version of the article after clicking on the link below.
Although many of the economic reports still sound abysmal, in talking with surveyors and equipment manufacturers across the country, I'm encouraged by what appears to be an uptick in surveying activity. Last December, when I talked with people, the most common phrase I heard was, "Business is in the toilet." Now, I'm hearing "We're starting to get a little work." I hope this includes you! It makes me proud to be an American when I hear people confidently say, "When it comes back." This faith in our economy's ability to rebound is what has made America successful.
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 Surveylab
Surveylab Ltd. is giving away an ike305 GPS (an $8900 value). ikeGPS combines a compass, laser rangefinder, GPS & camera in one compact handheld device, and allows governments, utilities & companies to accomplish more with less by positioning multiple targets while the operator remains in a single, safe, or inconspicuous location. To enter the contest, visit the Surveylab website and describe how the ikeGPS could transform your business or operation. Or email to The winner will be announced May 29, 2009.

Editorial: SPAR 2009 and the Carlson User Conference The American Surveyor has covered a whole lot of territory since our last issue! As part of a second road trip, I attended both SPAR 2009 conference in Denver and the 2nd Annual Carlson User Conference in Lexington, Kentucky, with a quick trip out to Logan, Utah in between (more on that leg of the .... Read the Article
WowFactor: SOKKIA Mobile Reference Station
As GPS has been adopted by surveyors, its proven benefits­higher productivity and efficiency­have been recognized. The unfortunate tradeoff to these benefits remains the high system cost of a traditional base and rover setup. To reduce the costs of GPS surveying, many countries have installed a permanent RTK infrastructure which .... Read the Article
A Model Home For NASA's New Space Telescope
NASA commissioned construction of an environmental simulation test chamber which was completed in 1964 at Johnson Space Center (JSC) in Houston, Texas. The facility, Chamber A, was invaluable for testing spacecraft and satellites before deployment to space. By testing spacecraft in an environment similar to ...
Read the Article
John Austin Survey
To become an owner of land in 1824 under Mexican law one had to do certain things­pay a fee, take possession of the land, perform certain rites, and reside on and cultivate the land for a minimum of two years (this also meant defending one's life and properties against any war parties of ... Read the Article
Conference Review: GNSS - Guess Who's Coming to Dinner? - Part 1
A December 2008 meeting hosted by the Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, California brought together not only the "Big 3" GNSS constellation providers but the new kids on the block as well, driving home the point that while GNSS may be "worldy" by nature it is getting "worldier" (if I can coin a term) by the .... Read the Article
Equipment Review: JAVAD GNSS Triumph-1
In the world of precision GPS, Javad Ashjaee continues to push the industry ahead with new technologies and new options. With roots that date back to the early days of Trimble Navigation, Javad was integral to the creation of the first combined GPS/ GLONASS system. More than a decade ago he was .... Read the Article
Direct Reflex vs. Standard Prism Measurements
Upon reading Mr. Pepling's product review of the Spectra Precision Focus 10 in the October 2008 issue, I took notice to one of the paragraphs on page 52. Mr. Pepling, and hopefully others, thought it would be interesting to see the results of a test comparing traditional prism measurements to ...
Read the Article
Field Notes: Contemplating Cooley
Rules for retracing the subdivision of sections are well and good provided the rules were followed in the first place. Sometimes they were not. If you have already made that discovery for yourself, my story will sound familiar. If you have not, read on anyway. With a job like this it's better to live ...
Read the Article
Vantage Point: Mapping the Zone
In March of 2007, the National Academies/National Research Council (NRC) informed me that I had been provisionally accepted as a member of "the National Research Council's Committee on FEMA Flood Maps: Accuracy Assessment and Cost-Effective Improvements". The first official meeting of ... Read the Article
Sponsored by FARO

Designed to replace cumbersome survey tools that delay projects and leave room for costly errors, the FARO Laser Scanner Photon places the power to manage your projects and assets in your hands.

The Photon's high-fidelity scans produce a digital library of the precise measurements you need to efficiently plan projects. Click here for more info.


Day, night, week-end, holiday, you name it... Amerisurv is updated 24/7 with the latest news and announcements affecting today's Land Surveying professional. Below are some of the latest items of interest.

feature We are very proud of our website! And even more proud of the recent Alexa website traffic rankings which put amerisurv ahead of the other two surveying magazine websites. The main reason for this is premium content. I've been mentioning the 80+ Fred Roeder articles, and these articles have helped us surge into the lead.

But there's more! In 2004, I posted almost all of Joel Leiniger's articles, more than 70. If you have a taste for boundary surveying, I highly recommend Joel's articles. In my opinion he is the premier boundary writer in our country. Pick a topic involving the legal aspects of surveying, and Joel's probably written about it. He's also had several articles about survey records: valuing them, digitizing them, and more, all pointing toward helping you put a value on your business.

I guess it's a good thing, and a sign of the success of the magazine, but to accomodate the overflow of articles, I have created an Exclusive Online-only section of the website. By no means am I saying that these articles are not worthy of print, but given page count restraints, and the fact that the authors are not happy when I sit on their articles for months, the online-only avenue seems the best way to go.

Another area which you might enjoy is our extensive History section. The American Surveyor leads the way in presenting premium history articles. When I speak, I tell people that history is important to us for both legal and romantic reasons. Legal because of boundary surveying, and romantic because as we age, history naturally becomes more important to us.

Please visit our website and discover for yourself the wealth of resource information, including industry news, product reviews, software reviews, Test Yourself, the WowFactor, videos, and much, much more.
Trimble Access Software brings the field and office teams closer together by enabling data sharing and collaboration. Surveys can be completed faster with less time spent traveling back and forth to the office. Trimble Access software keeps your teams synchronized and connected, so you can handle whatever the day has in store for you.

Send data back and forth, not people.

Know the data is right before they leave the jobsite.

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Did you know that the easiest way to get news updates from amerisurv is by using an RSS feed? By clicking on the orange RSS button below you can have the latest news delivered to your desktop in an e-mail. Because we only post selected news items, this will not result in a flood, but rather will easily keep you up to date on industry news.

NOAA: Mild Solar Storm Season Predicted
FARO to be Featured on Discovery Channel's Shades of Green
JAVAD GNSS Customers Now Track GPS L5 Signal
Brent Jones' Presentation at the Carlson Software User Conference (transcription of video)
Topcon Partners with AFDS
Conference Review: GNSS – Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner? – Part 2 (exclusive online-only article)
PBS Vizcaya Documentary Gets Help From Surveying and Engineering Firm
GITA Solutions Conference Energizes Geospatial Industry
Dual-Constellation Live L5 Tracking with Septentrio PolaRx3G
2009 ESRI Survey & Engineering GIS Summit to Provide Tools for Increasing Business with GIS
Associated Builders & Contractors: First Quarter GDP Worse than Expected
NOAA Accepts ESRI-Based System to Modernize Nautical Chart Production
Newest Generation of Engineering Time Logging Software Released
GIS Education Helps Prepare Students for High-Tech Careers
Amberg Rail: A New Dimension in Railway Surveying
LANDINS: Inertial Navigation System for Mapping Dense Urban Areas Quickly and Efficiently
Vertical Mapping Resources Acquires Kellogg Aerial Surveys
Bucknell Students Help Bring Running Water to Mountain Villagers in Nicaragua
Hemisphere GPS Climbs Ranks in Branham 300 List
SPOT Image Signs New Agreement to Distribute KOMPSAT-2 Imagery Across North America
SAIC Launches Web-Based Processing System Delivering Custom LANDSAT Imagery Directly to Desktop
Blue Marble Releases GeoCore an All-in-one Geospatial Data Conversion Developer Tool
Maplecroft Flu Pandemic Maps Reveal Countries Most at Risk - Britain Ranks Top for Risk of Spread
ISPRS and The ISPRS Foundation Announce Grants for Science Initiatives
Got News? Drop a line to press [at] or Contact Us

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    Market Your Company on is a new Web site that makes it easy for real estate professionals and consumers to find land surveyors, geotechnical engineers and other real estate services in their area. Now, you can market your company online at no cost. Showcase your areas of expertise and credentials, attract new business, and track referrals right on the site. It takes just minutes to join more than 250,000 businesses already listed. Click here for your FREE listing.


    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 more events, please visit our online calendar HERE.

    Optech Innovative Lidar Solutions Conference - June 24-26, 2009, Toronto, Canada. Optech invites their current and prospective customers as well industry members to attend or exhibit. The Innovative Lidar Solutions Conference offers many opportunities for networking amongst industry colleagues, receiving updates related to survey and mapping solutions, and gaining insight into current lidar best practices. More information HERE.

    50th Anniversary Reunion of the Geodetic Survey Squadron - June 26-28, 2009, Cheyenne, Wyoming. This reunion will be special, as it coincides with the 50th anniversary of the establishment of this unique and distinguished military organization on July 1, 1959. More information and contact info HERE.

    2009 ESRI Survey & Engineering GIS Summit - July 11–14, 2009, San Diego, CA. Surveyors, engineers, and geographic information system (GIS) users are invited to enhance current practices, expand opportunities, and stay up-to-date with the latest GIS technology and the new markets it creates, by attending the 2009 ESRI Survey & Engineering GIS Summit to be held at the San Diego Convention Center. More information HERE.
    Send your event info to editor[at]
    << event calendar >>


    The following articles from our March, 2009 issue are also available on the Amerisurv website.


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

    bookHistoric Poster Collection -- Christian Hurtin Compass
    A highly decorative surveying compass, dated 1794, made by clock and instrument maker Christian Hurtin in Goshen New York. This particular compass displays primitive art typical of many 18th century American clock and instrument makers. Note: This print is 23"x18".

    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!


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