Take the 2-minute tour ×
Geographic Information Systems Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for cartographers, geographers and GIS professionals. It's 100% free, no registration required.

On a fairly regular basis at my place of work we get inquiries of the form "where is Lake Potato?" or "where is Poppingstone Creek?" or... The questions come from co-workers, the general public and other organizations. We're a government agency and sell maps, so a natural target for that kind of query.

My method for answering generally resembles:

  1. search the official names db (in Canada we have the Canadian Geographical Names DB),
  2. Scan our local data stores and maps
  3. A general internet search
  4. Send an email 'round to field workers (biologists, conservation and parks officers, etc.)
  5. ...

...but what to do if you get all the way to #5 and still need an answer? I could post a story on my website, and one of the 7 people who read it this year might know. GIS Stack Exchange is peopled by the kind of folk who might know, but it's off topic. Indeed, even this question about the question is close to being off topic (read as: it's ok with me if the general consensus is to move this to meta).

So my question is, is there any place where "where is such-n-such?" is on topic?

share|improve this question
3  
Where does one ask "Where does one ask "Where is ...?"?"? –  blah238 Jun 29 '12 at 22:44
1  
Can you give examples of such questions? I know we get questions asking about data sources on a regular basis, but I don't remember any questions asking where any particular place is. –  Andy W Jun 29 '12 at 23:17
2  
I think he means questions from coworkers, not GIS.se users, making this less of a meta question. –  blah238 Jun 29 '12 at 23:32
    
@AndyW, the most recent example of this kind of request is "Where is Poppingstone Creek? It's in or near the Richardson Mountain Range (Yukon, Canada)". I'd be suprised if you remembered any questions on GIS.se of this nature, since they're off topic ;-) –  matt wilkie Jul 1 '12 at 4:02
2  
related: proposed [Geography Stack Exchange]/(area51.stackexchange.com/proposals/37498/geography) –  matt wilkie Jul 1 '12 at 4:35
show 2 more comments

migrated from meta.gis.stackexchange.com Jul 5 '12 at 0:34

This question came from our discussion, support, and feature requests site for cartographers, geographers and GIS professionals.

2 Answers

US Board on Geographic Names might be useful. Has link to NGA's list of foreign place names.

Update: NGA doesn't return anything for DEW Line ... must be near Lake Potato. enter image description here

share|improve this answer
add comment

Also GeoNames: http://www.geonames.org/

share|improve this answer
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.