NACIS 2015 has ended
Welcome to NACIS 2015 in Minneapolis! This is the annual meeting of the North American Cartographic Information Society (NACIS). The theme for this year’s meeting is Mapping Interactions. See the schedule below and go to the NACIS website for more details.

The North American Cartographic Information Society, founded in 1980, is an organization comprised of specialists from private, academic, and government organizations whose common interest lies in facilitating communication in the map information community.

For those of you who were unable to attend the conference, or who couldn’t clone themselves to be at multiple talks at once, many slides are linked in the session descriptions below. Twin Cities local Kitty Hurley also put together this fantastic document summarizing much of what she saw at the meeting, so if slide decks aren’t linked, check out her notes. 
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Friday, October 16 • 4:00pm - 5:10pm
Theoretical Frontiers

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Psychophysics: Foundation for Map Design
George F. McCleary, Jr. University of Kansas
It is really quite simple. The word psychophysics is not complex: in thirteen letters it combines two basic ideas, psychology (“the study of the mind and how it works”) and physics (“the scientific study of the properties and interactions of matter and energy”) … or combined (and rephrased), the study of how the mind deals with the properties and interactions of matter and energy. The mind “manages” sensations and perception and processes cognitions. There are stimuli, and there are responses. A simple example: there is a person … a map user … and there is a map. The map is a stimulus … it provides information. The person (using his/her mind) responds to the map. This is a behavioral thing: a stimulus-response relationship. Simple maps generate simpler responses than complex maps … and there are very few simple maps. Psychophysics provides a foundation for understanding and explaining the map-user relationship.

The Cartographic Discourse of Human Interactions: A Brief Introduction to the Work of Gunnar Olsson
Christine Bush, autonomous scholar (ideaspeak.us)
Cartography is commonly reduced to the craft of map making without a full appreciation for its legacy as an intellectual framework and cognitive practice that has had profound implications for endeavors beyond the geographical. Gunnar Olsson, author of ten books, is professor emeritus of geography at Uppsala University, Sweden. The International Encyclopedia of Human Geography (2009) describes his work as “a lifelong journey of self-conscious reevaluation” in which Olsson “has pursued his core theme of human interaction in search of its geographical essences.” The culmination of this journey is an epic work, Abysmal (2007, Univ. Chicago Press Books), that offers fascinating insights into the intersection of human reasoning and cartographic rhetoric. My overview of this work will invite cartographers to move beyond thinking about their work in increasingly technological terms and to also engage with the historical and philosophical discourses at play when we think, not about cartography, but cartographically.

Telling Stories 
Mark Denil, National Ice Center
It seems, in just the last few years, to have become commonplace to say that that maps 'tell stories', but What does this mean? What is a story, and what does it mean to tell a story? What is the role of a story teller, and can a map fulfill that role? What is actually going on when someone believes that a map is telling them a story?, and furthermore, what (and whose) stories are being told, and to whom? This talk will explore these questions and examine some maps that might be suspected of telling stories.


Mamata Akella

National Park Service

avatar for Christine Bush

Christine Bush

Company Position: Somewhere in the abyss between Silicon Valley and Plato's Republic ;-)
...I welcome inquiries about opportunities to collaborate as a writer/researcher for projects in the area of cartographic history or spatial discourse analysis. Look for my review of of the National Geographic Atlas of the World (10th edition) in a forthcoming edition of Cartographic... Read More →
avatar for Mark Denil

Mark Denil

sui generis

George McCleary

University of Kansas

Friday October 16, 2015 4:00pm - 5:10pm CDT
Charles Frost 225 3rd Ave S, Minneapolis, MN 55401

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