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Mapping Policies

Show Profile  The Map Guy Posted: 26 March 2014, 6:28 AM  
Taupo OC uses Condes - fabulous that all club members can use it (as mentioned by Alistair). IMHO Condes still is, and always has been superior and easier to use than OCAD CS.
Haven't tried Condes 9 (apart from the beta version) so that should be even better than Condes 8. Condes 9 has been around for a while now.

Show Profile  Paul I Posted: 26 March 2014, 8:15 AM  
Like ocad however can't stand ocad cs. I've used purple pen several times and find it fantastic. Surprised not many people use it in nz as it has become popular overseas. Very user friendly, importing various templates and exporting all manner of file types. Perfect for standard events, can't do relay formats though.
NB also has the white border around numerals option for those who are a fan... note to those who use the white border IMO it needs to be very thin only or too much detail is lost from the map. Can print both pictorial and English control descriptions and easily place them wherever you want on the map.
I've just purchased ocad 11 and find the layering system for templates really good. I see some clubs are generous enough to purchase several ocad and ocad cs licenses for it's members. Not all clubs have done this so some alternative free stuff is useful and welcome. Also this could stop beginner course setters fiddling with the original map as they only get to use a finished map template with purple pen.

Show Profile  The Map Guy Posted: 26 March 2014, 10:36 AM  
Condes allows an OCAD map as a template. It is impossible to alter the base map from Condes. Condes is a purpose built program for course setting so Relays are a breeze.

If people are so hung up about having white outlines on control circle numbers this can be achieved in Condes by exporting the courses as an *.ocd file, importing it onto the OCAD map and altering the numbers to an icon design for that purpose - I know it is a few extra steps.

I really wonder why it is so necessary to have a white background to control numbers. Either the font size is too small to be seen, or the number need shifting about the circle. Try a bold type, or tweak the colour - I've seen the courses plotted as red or magenta or purple.

Show Profile  Michael Posted: 27 March 2014, 6:28 AM  
Tch tch Map Guy. People with one of the various colour-blind varieties will be down your throat. Unfortunately the specification purple is not the best for the majority but is not the worst for most colour-blind people. I find the numbers don't exactly leap off the page, particularly in dense stuff like sprints, and any improvements are helpful.

Show Profile  Michael Posted: 30 August 2014, 6:13 AM  
Sad to read that NZ Aerial Mapping is in liquidation. It has been a pioneer in aerial imagery and I would guess in LIDAR surveying too. I trust that the crown imagery library that it holds is protected. It may still be needed for areas outside LIDAR coverage.

Show Profile  Paul Posted: 30 August 2014, 9:08 AM  

Show Profile  Michael Posted: 9 September 2014, 4:45 AM  
Writing things down is a help to refining ideas. I reserve the right to change my mind!

Some mappers are grappling with "the scale/detail problem". We want to put more stuff in but the IOF insists that the "gold standard" is the 1:15,000 map. (1:10,000 is just a 150% enlargement so you don't get any more room for details.) The draft revision of the mapping speci confirms this approach - no more detail. We have to be even more careful because digital printing isn't as crisp as offset.

Now it seems that orienteers actually LIKE detail, and clubs seek out ever more detailed terrain. When they advertise events, clubs make a big thing of how intricate the terrain is. No-one ever uses words like "soft undulations with very few features". We look for rocks, sand dunes, erosion. Then we find a lot of stuff that is just under the minimum sizes and there is pressure to fit it on the map. So we use under-size dots, and thinner lines (just a few!) And then some people find it hard to read. And they say "why not just increase the scale, orienteering shouldn't be about vision."

And that is what has happened over the 100 years of orienteering. The Routegadget guy has a nice little graph on his Facebook page at

But the IOF Mapping Commission is standing its ground. 1:15,000 it says.

I think this is not so much about mapping styles as orienteering styles. There is a certain beauty about navigating across vague terrain, and finding yourself on the other side. The IOF defines this as the LONG DISTANCE course style. And mapping for this may hold us back from doing the best job of intricate terrain.

Well why don't we (as a country) just abandon the long distance. The IOF has actually made it quite hard for us and other B nations to get runners into the long distance world champs. Why don't we just concentrate on the middle (and sprint) distance styles, both in our events and our competitive focus. We would continue to seek out detailed areas (hard to stop a 100-year trend anyway) and adopt a mapping specification that suits it: say 1:10,000 without symbol enlargement. Maybe even larger.

Notice I said middle STYLE. Nothing wrong with a 90-minute course in the middle distance style, with electronic punching and butterfly loops the problems of the map being too large have gone away.

And those who enjoy the long distance navigation style can always go rogaining. Where there is a gradual move from off-the-shelf topo maps, to corrections, to specific rogaine maps, to increasing the scale and ...

Show Profile  Paul I Posted: 9 September 2014, 7:55 AM  
yup we are being told in no uncertain terms that we MUST generalise more, which is good to a degree, but certainly is going to make things difficult in nice detailed terrain. Pick your favourite terrain and picture it as a 1:15000 map.
If this was an election issue then I'm voting for the peoples party

Show Profile  pcbrent Posted: 10 September 2014, 7:27 AM  
Anyone remember Naseby at 1:15000? was great.

Show Profile  Paul I Posted: 10 September 2014, 7:34 AM  
yeah, drawn with pre ISOM2000 they could show some of the detail as symbols were thinner/smaller.
Try doing a middle race on a more generalised version now and listen to the crowd response.
Plus you had good eyesight then.

Show Profile  Michael Posted: 10 September 2014, 9:17 AM  
I think you are both right. When we mapped Naseby at 1:15,000, had the middle distance even been invented?

Show Profile  Bryan Posted: 10 September 2014, 9:31 AM  
We were allowed by the IOF for WMOC 2000 Harakeke a 9% reduction and we could get all the detail we wanted to map in.

APOC 1994 Knottingley was printed at 1:15000 for elites which was readable with offset printing (but also used a reduction in symbol size).

For World Cup 1 Oceania 2014 we used the standard symbol sizes (we would not have got clearance to use a reduced symbol set) - I was still mapping too fine and after draft fieldwork, the map was unreadable using standard symbols. I then went out and visited everything again and had to think what should be taken off. Generalisation (and some more detail added on) went on for several months. For a World Cup event (or any large international event) factor in a long period required for fieldcheck and map refinement (almost the same time as for the initial fieldwork) - also required endless visits of planner/controller/National controller and a few IOF controller visits followed by mapper going back to fix/correct things. Generalisation can be done but takes a lot of extra time. The whole process to create an IOF compliant map in detailed sand dune terrain probably ends up with a more accurate map as everything is checked and rechecked - the style of the map is different to many of the sanddune maps we are used to which have all detail mapped.

Show Profile  Paul I Posted: 11 September 2014, 8:19 AM  
Thanks for posting that Bryan. It's very timely as clubs head towards mapping or remapping old terrain for WMOC in the next couple of years. Pretty certain some of our old styles won't be up to scratch. Also as Selwyn wisely suggested, mappers should keep their ear to the ground on any changes to ISOM which may slightly alter things as ISOM201x looks to become ISOM2017.

Show Profile  Michael Posted: 31 March 2015, 5:32 AM  
I can't remember the kiwi ever being so strong against the euro. Could be a good time to buy/upgrade OCAD. By my calcs OCAD Std would be $710, OCAD Starter $220. Ken Dowling the Australasian agent may even be able to do better. (PS I have no business connection with Ken and think that in the long run OOM might win out. But there are still some obstacles.)




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