All of the maps on the map page started out as CAD drawings. I digitized the features from USGS and NOAA source maps then imported the data to a drawing program (via a DXF file) to shade areas and add labeling. I find the drawing programs are better at shading, coloring and labeling then the CAD programs. CAD is better at precision drawing and digitizing. That's why I use both. My CAD program is DesignCAD and my drawing program is Corel Draw!. The one exception is the Cleveland area map I made for the GRSC home page. This map was created using Maptitude mapping software which included all of the street and boundry data. I set the map up then did a screen capture to create the GIF file. The version of Maptitude I used did not have good facilities for outputting the maps to image files. After I had the image file I used Corel Photo Paint to tweek the image and drop in some lables and the GRSC logo. I also had to correct some of the roads because the Maptitude data (based on US Census TIGER files) showed road connections incorrectly.
I download track log data from my Garmin GPS45 using GARDOWN8.EXE running on an old 286 laptop PC. From this I get a text file with one line for each point in the track log.
Track Log Maps
The data looks like this:
T N41 46.3785 W081 16.7845 Sun Aug 31 23:18:36 1997
T N41 46.4168 W081 16.7938 Sun Aug 31 23:19:57 1997
T N41 46.4461 W081 16.8196 Sun Aug 31 23:21:02 1997
I then bring this data into an Excel spread sheet that I have set up to convert the lat & long to xy coordinates. The xy coordinates are relative to the Fairport Harbor light house for my local maps. I save the xy coodinates to another text file and import that to DesignCAD. I then overlay that on a drawing of the harbor and shoreline using the lighthouse position as the origin reference.
The next step is to export the map to a DXF file and import the DXF file to Corel Draw!. This is where I do the color fills and titles. Drawing programs are better at this then CAD programs. Once I have all the lables and color fills set up I export the drawing as a GIF file and it's ready for the web page.
That's how I do it for now. I plan to write a program to convert the track log file directly to the XY file or maybe straight to CAD.
GPS Communication Software
GIS / Mapping Sites