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Hello Friend...We hope you're doing well, it's been a while! I write with an index of the February articles on our website, we've got several good ones this time around. Your print copy is in the mail, you'll have it shortly if you haven't received it already..

The American Surveyor's articles have been getting more attention than usual in recent weeks. Just a couple weeks ago, NBC Nightly News came a knockin' after finding Bart Crattie's Georgia Water Shortage article. Just last night, a quick segment aired on their national evening news program about the boundary dispute between Georgia and Tennessee. NBC's production team was fascinated with Bart's explanation that a surveyor's miscalculations were to blame. We were tickled to see Bart on national television, as a result of his article in our January issue. If you didn't get a chance to read the article initially, you can do so here.

Another article from our February edition has been attracting a lot of "outside attention" recently. Joel Leininger's piece on the benefits of Health Savings Accounts ("The HSA Advantage") explains why they're an idea who's time has come. Joel had already convinced us to go with HSA's for our small business a year prior. They're worth investigating, they can save you a lot of money! Joel's article was picked up by a highly trafficked insurance website recently, over 2,000 people downloaded it within days of it's initial posting. You'll find it in the article index below.

That's it for now. If you can, please take a minute to browse the article index below. From history to hi-tech, we've got pretty much everything covered. This edition has a heavy focus on education, with contributions from some of the industry's most notable names. Several of the articles deal with what's being done to pave the way for tomorrow's surveyors..

Please don't hesitate to contact me if you've got a project or story idea you'd like to chat about.
Thanks again for your support!

Marc Cheves, LS
The American Surveyor

[Send your comments, announcements, tips, gripes, or kudos to Marc]
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Editorial: Competence and the State of Education
Last year in my July/Aug editorial I included some text written by Dick Elgin about the state of education for young surveyors. Canadian surveyor and educator Barry Kavanagh responded with a letter to the editor and promised to follow up with an article. You'll find his article in this issue ....
Read the Article
Point to Point: The HSA Advantage
There are few surveyors who are excited by the prospect of discussing insurance of any form, and health insurance in particular. I count myself among that group. Nevertheless, something has happened in the last few years of which you should be aware, but....
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A Private VRS Network Takes the Strain Out of Phoenix Surveying
"I used to figure one person in the office to keep up with one survey crew. But now it takes me, a receptionist and two draftsmen to keep up with one crew. If I added another ... "
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Laser Scanning: DARPA Urban Challenge
The final round of the DARPA Urban Challenge took place on Saturday, November 3, 2007 at the former George Air Force Base in Victorville, California, now used by the military to train for urban operations. On the high desert northeast of Los Angeles, 11 cars bristling with...
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Worried About The Future of Surveying? Not a problem in Florida!
In my July/August 2007 editorial I wrote about a challenge that continually lies before us: attracting young people into surveying. Shortly after the magazine came out, I received a call from Marilyn Evers, the executive director of the Florida Surveying and Mapping Society (FSMS). She ....
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Education in Crisis—The Elephant That No One Sees
With all due respect to Dr. Richard Elgin, who wrote the original piece ["The Demise of Basic Surveying Mathematics," May 2007], and editor Marc Cheves who commented on the same problem in his July/August 2007 editorial, I think their take on...
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Distance Learning: Something For Everybody
In surveying circles, it seems that when someone mentions continuing education (CE), somehow the word "mandatory" gets attached to it. Unfortunately, many surveyors tend to view mandatory continuing education as some sort of taboo. In some states CE is a ...
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Survey Reports: Preparing a Survey Report--The Focus - Part 1
Some states require survey reports. All surveyors should consider preparing survey reports at the culmination of a retracement survey. Unfortunately, the preparation of a survey report is not covered in most academic programs and is seldom adequately explained in ...
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Campus GIS Will Improve Public Safety at LSU
It's 0-dark 30. You need to find the underground gas valve that controls service to a burning building and the two closest fire hydrants ­right now. On some college campuses that would mean getting the facilities manager out of...
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Test Yourself #22
On an X, Y, Z orthogonal coordinate system, suppose an Archilochus colubris leaves coordinates 20, 5, 0 (X:Y:Z) moving in the plus Z direction at a speed of 4.628 feet per minute for 2.111 minutes. Then the Archilochus colubris changes...
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Vantage Point: Walking the Line
In the fall of my junior year of high school, unionized teachers in my school district went on strike to gain better health care benefits and an increase in the pay scale for those with advanced degrees and experience. Perhaps a hundred students at my high school sat out on...
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Trimble GX 3D Scanner: Capture All the Points You Need, Not Just All the Points

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Each week in this section we'll update you about Surveying and other Geospatial conferences, training, seminars, webinars, and relevant events. Feel free to make a suggestion for future consideration.
CLSA Conference 2008
Silver Legacy Hotel & Casino, Reno, Nevada
February 23-27, 2008
Note to local readers: Editor Marc Cheves will deliver the keynote at this event, please don't hesitate to catch up with him afterwards!

SPAR 2008
Now in it's fifth year, SPAR 2008 is all about the business and technology of capturing, managing and integrating 3D information.
Houston, Texas
March 3-5, 2008

2008 ACSM/LSAW Joint Conference
Join us in beautiful Spokane for ACSM's annual conference, in conjunction with the Land Surveyor's Association of Washington meeting.
Spokane, Washington
March 4-9, 2008

Carlson Silver Anniversary User Conference
Featuring training (with chance to earn CEUs) and a look to the future.
Lexington Convention Center, Lexington, KY
April 14-15

2008 ESRI Survey & Engineering GIS Summit
Join more than 400 surveyors and engineers in exploring the possibilities of GIS technology. See how GIS software integrates with surveying and engineering tools to provide more complete business solutions and field processes.
San Diego, California
August 2-5, 2008
Send your event info to editor[at]
<< event calendar >>


More and more job postings are landing on the Amerisurv Career boards. Posting your career notice is free as is browsing the opportunities. Below are a couple of the recent job notices.

NEW Amerisurv career Opportunity... Office & Field Survey Personnel
C & C Technologies -- Lafayette, Louisiana
- C & C Technologies, Inc., a Louisiana based oil and gas surveying company, is looking for Office & Field Survey Personnel to work in the Land Survey Division in our Lafayette office. Salary DOE. Health, Life, Dental, LTD, Vacation, 401(k) and more benefits. C & C is also looking for sales and marketing personnel......

NEW Amerisurv career Opportunity... Supervising Surveyor
Port Authority of New York and New Jersey
- The Port Authority is seeking to fill a position of a Supervising Surveyor in the Engineering Department's Central Survey Group. As a Supervising Surveyor you will be responsible for assisting the manager in planning and directing work for multiple survey crews as well as for consultant crews. ......

NEW Amerisurv career Opportunity...Land Surveyor: Roanoke, Virginia
Gay & Neel, Inc.
- We are seeking a Land Surveyor for our Roanoke Virginia office. This is an exciting career opportunity for an individual holding a Virginia Surveyors License (L.S.). This position will involve management of all survey operations to be conducted from our Roanoke office and will include field and office work, legal research, client relations and project oversight......

NEW Amerisurv career Opportunity... Professional Land Surveyor
Colorado DOT
- Do you like working in the professional survey field and having the opportunity to be out of the office? Do you like being challenged by a variety of work duties, applying your expertise to solve problems, interacting with many people, and seeing a project from inception to completion? If so, then come work for CDOT as a Professional Land Surveyor!......

(To list your HOT Job for some added exposure, contact jobs at for your Premium Career Listing - List your Career opportunity online for 60 days and right here in the newsletter!)

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    Additional articles from last month:


    Did-U-Know you can now download ALL the USGS DRGs for Free from the Internet Archive

    bookHistoric Map Collection -- Map of the State of Florida showing the progress of the surveys; from the annual report of the Surveyor General for 1856. Drew, Columbus. CREATED/PUBLISHED Jacksonville, 1856. SUMMARY Township map showing drainage, cities and towns, roads, trails, and location of two railroad lines in the northern part of the state. Stated scale reads: 12 miles to an inch. It is corrected in ink to read 18 miles. NOTES Scale ca. 1:1,140,480. 23"x24"

    Printed on acid-free museum quality paper, it is guaranteed to retain color and clarity for years to come. Due to the large size and high quality, each map in this collection 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.

    Broken Buildings, Busted Budgets: How to Fix America's Trillion-Dollar Construction Industry (The University of Chicago Press, October 2007, $25.00). This new book, by construction attorney Barry B. LePatner, details why we can no longer ignore the fatal flaws in America's construction industry. More about the book on my blog.


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