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Half-day ‘Mapping from Home’ virtual event: June 10, 2020
In lieu of the cancelled CAG / ACMLA / CCA2020 workshop and conference (due to COVID-19), the CCA hosted an online / virtual half-day event on Wednesday 10 June.
About 160 attendees tuned into to view the wide variety of presentations (see list of presenters below). The online webinar software was provided by the University of Winnipeg and was co-hosted by Roger Wheate and Chris Storie.
Below are the abstracts and some links to images and/or digital copies of the presentations (if made available by the presenter).
Abstracts and Presentations
The Use of GIS and Historical Maps for Analysis of the Dynamic Native American Landscape
Dan Cole, Smithsonian Institute (and a past president CCA)
Dan provided an historical cartographic analysis of Native American and Euro-American relations throughout the center of North America. He explored threefold the roles of government, academic, and tribal mapping, and brought them together with some findings concerning Native American land tenure, population and related activities.
The historic and contemporary cartography has included, albeit selectively at times, spatial data on American Indian territories, land claims, villages, and populations, most of which required information from Native cartographers and other Indigenous informants.
All of these issues are involved in the affairs of American Indians and First Nations in our countries and will be discussed to analyze the ongoing spatial activities across the dynamic landscape of Native America.
Accessible Mobilities: Mapping Barrier-Free Access on Campuses
Victoria Fast, University of Calgary, CAG-GIS study group chair
People with mobility-related disabilities (representing about 15% of the Canadian population) are often denied free and independent access to public spaces due to barriers that inhibit movement. This is especially apparent on post-secondary campus, and only 15% of Universities in Canada have a dedicated access map to help students navigate those barriers.
Using four different University campuses, this project sought to streamline the barrier-free map-making process and develop a reproduceable method that any institution could implement. In this presentation, I will discuss the data typology development and data collection, map symbology and design, and analytics that supports better campus planning for people with disabilities.
Simplicity in the time of complexity: Webmaps during COVID-19
Daniel Brendle-Moczuk, University of Victoria, and President, ACMLA
Although beauty lies in the eye of the beholder and thus very subjective, this one person’s opinion examined the plethora of COVID-19 web maps in regards to aesthetics, beauty and simplicity. While perhaps singing to the choir, this presentation drew upon literature and some cartographic mapping principles from Wood, Robinson, MacEachren, Monmonier, Jones through to Field and Brewer with others in between.
However, this session was not an academic but a visual treat as well as much needed humor as we examined some, (with apologies to Sergio Leone), good, ugly and outright bad examples of COVID-19 web maps.
[Presentation slides not provided … ]
Accessing our past: improving discovery / use of historical Census of Canada data and maps
Leanne Trimble, University of Toronto / ACMLA
The Census of Canada is a key data source available to support both contemporary and historical research in this country. However, the important historical data embedded within printed maps, printed data tables, and early born-digital data files, remain challenging to access. In this presentation I’ll review the work of the Historical Census of Canada Working group.
We have a vision for an open, bilingual, Census of Canada research platform that would facilitate long-term access to print and digital census collections. I’ll talk about our work so far on a census inventory, and our plans for the future, including making the inventory searchable online, as well as embarking on data “rescue” projects (digitization, format conversion, etc.) to improve access.
National-scale flood risk assessment: GIS-based flood hazards exposure and vulnerability mapping at the census tract level across Canada
Liton Chakraborty, Andrea Minano, Jason Thistlethwaite, Daniel Scott, Daniel Henstra ; University of Waterloo / CAG-GIS
This study assesses social vulnerability to flood hazard exposure at the census tract (CT) level across Canada. Following the Cutter’s hazard-of-place model approach, geographical information system (GIS)-based bivariate choropleth maps reveal the hotspots of flood risk at the CT level. Flood exposure analysis captures the percent of residential properties in a CT exposed to any of the fluvial, pluvial, and coastal flood hazards at the 100-year flood recurrence interval.
The findings highlight the spatial patterns of social vulnerability to flood hazard, which critically helps policymakers identify geographic flood disadvantaged groups of communities in Canada.
Short Introduction to Creating Shaded Relief with Blender
Morgan Hite, Hesperus Arts, Smithers, BC / CCA
Although shaded relief for mountain ranges was originally hand drawn by artists, we now have tools for creating our own digital hillshades in software such as QGIS and ArcGIS. However, the free animation software Blender is another exciting tool for creating shaded relief.
Although designed to create animation sequences for film, Blender has a plugin (BlenderGIS) which allows the software to read a DEM, position light sources and shoot a single frame from overhead. Blender’s light-bounce algorithms, adjustable light-sources, and surface materials give delicious results, but the software initially appears quite intimidating.
I will demonstrate the basic method to produce hillshades in Blender, note the typical pitfalls, and the features a creative cartographer could go on to explore.
The 2011 Snowtober: A Cartographic Model of Social Vulnerability to a Winter Weather Whiplash Event
Christopher Hewitt and Irena Creed (University of Saskatchewan), John Campbell, Nora Casson, Alexandra Contosta, David Lutz, & Anita Morzillo ; University of Saskatchewan / CAG-GIS
Extreme weather events are expected to become more frequent due to rising global temperatures. One such event was the 2011 October snowstorm in New England, which left approximately 4.3 million people without power, and $900,000,000 in damage. Considering the spatial component of the storm and the vulnerability factors, geovisualization would be an ideal framework to investigate this event.
Therefore, through a GIS analysis, the areas hardest impacted by the storm will be investigated. The results will be visualized as maps and discussed from a grounded visualization perspective. The conclusion will emphasize the importance of geovisualization in investigating extreme weather events.
French Cartography West of Lake Superior in Relation to the Seven Years War
David Malaher, Centre for Rupert’s Land Studies, University of Winnipeg / ACMLA
Frontier skirmishes between the French and English colonies was brought on by competition for future living space. By the time La Verendrye was building his first large trading post on Lake of the Woods in 1732, a war with maps was underway. Claims for western land were made with maps, whether the geography was really known or not.
Policy at Le Dépôt de la Marine was weak in proving that France had a long history of occupying the region west of Lake Superior. The most significant map arising from the region west of Lake Superior in relation to the Seven Years War was produced by Auchagah and his Cree compatriots by 1730, 25 years before the War. From Auchagah’s map, J. N. Bellin in 1743 produced the first hydrologically correct map of the 500 km terrain immediately west of Lake Superior. French cartography west of Lake Superior played little or no part in starting or ending the Seven Years War.
Continue reading the full paper, published online in the ACMLA Bulletin Spring/Summer 2020