Map Tools

Online Map Toolsfor on-the-fly mapping

Sometimes you need to grab a latitude & longitude fast, or pin down an elevation, but without the firing up the entire GIS arsenal (or even another application outside of your browser). Here are online tools to do just that. Below are links to tools for both single and batch georeferencing.

  • ArcGIS Explorer Online — browser-based ESRI mapping and visualization tool with a rich suite of basemaps and has built-in measuring tools. If you have an ESRI global account (free) then you can save and share your maps as well. A few things are missing here (shapefile and KML import) but has potential to be my new favorite.
  • Earth Tools — a collection of online tools to find places, find sunset/sunrise times, elevation, time zones over Google basemaps
  • Acme Mapper— Easy interface to search for feature names, use Google’s basemaps or USGS topoquads or DOQs, measure between points, and find coordinate information in decimal degrees or UTMs
    • Google Maps/My Maps— Not just for looking up restaurant directions; adding lab tools to My Maps (requires a Google Account) increases the power. To enable labs for 1) finding lat/long; 2) retrieving coordinates 3) measure distance or 4) zoom to bounding box (my favorites), first log into your Google Account, click on the green flask marked NEW! in the upper right, and scroll through the pop-up window for available lab tools.

New to My Maps? Google Tutorials: Creating MapsCollaborating on Maps

For batch or single locality Georeferencing:

  • BioGeomancer— Deprecated and no longer functional.
  • GeoLocate–A desktop and web platform for georeferencing natural history collections; great for routes and hydro-features, also calculates maximum uncertainty value and prioritizes results. Easy to use, now embedded in Arctos and Specify collection management systems.

Drop me a line if you have a suggestion to share.


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