NATURAL EARTH – FREE WORLD BASE MAP
Natural Earth (www.naturalearthdata.com) is an integrated collection of raster and vector data for small-scale mapping that builds on Tom Patterson’s original Natural Earth raster datasets. Its intended users are practicing mapmakers, which makes it unique among geospatial datasets. We will discuss the components of Natural Earth applicable for web mapping. Available at 1:10-, 1:50-, and 1:110-million scales, the goal is to give cartographers an off-the-shelf solution for making small-scale world and regional maps. All data are in the public domain. The Washington Post donated much of the 50- and 110-million scale data; the 10-million scale data derive from WDBII augmented from newer sources. Available in shapefile format, the vectors are fully attributed, thanks to volunteers worldwide, and contain names and other data attributes relevant to mapmakers. Our presentation will examine the creation and organization of Natural Earth vector data, and plans for collaborating with the user community to update and expand the data offerings.
Nathaniel Kelso - The Washington Post
Tom Patterson - U.S. National Park Service