Cartography and Technology

Cartography and technology deal with maps and the development of them throughout the years. So, originally, maps were handmade.

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And so, every time a map was handmade, it differed slightly from the one before it. Even if it was the same person making all the maps of a particular area, they’re all going to differ slightly because they were made by hand, and was subject to human error.

The development of the compass greatly helped map makers, because then they could be more precise in their map making. The invention of the printing press really helped the uniformity of maps overall, because now map makers could make one map, and then, they can create an exact duplicate over and over again until everyone had a map that looked exactly the same of the same area. So, it took out a lot of room for error.

The invention of the telescope and other devices like it allowed cartographers to use the sun at noon, or the North Star and measure it so they could figure out their own latitude.

The development of computer software, today, we have GPS’s and rangefinders that allow people to make maps on the go. In addition, commercial quality maps are made on specialized computer software that helps map makers be extremely precise and accurate.

So, that’s a quick look at the development of maps throughout the years.