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For a paper at university i am trying to create a cataloge for cartographic capacity of different GIS programs, especially open source like QGIS and so on The aim of this is to eventually have a cataloge that says: if you want to produce a (just one example) street map, do not take program A because it is not possible to change lines into representations and thus the overlying of lines can not be manually permitted.

so my Question is: What are criteria for cartographic capabilities? Or maybe it is easier to say: by which criteria can i define how good an openGIS program is for producing maps?

So far i have tried to think about a few criteria and came to these: -what kind and amount of different labels can be created -can classes be created that are assigned to different labels -symbols available -production of a map sheet -what can be done with the legend

I hope these are reasonable but please tell me anyways so far i have only worked with ArcGIS and thus only know about some of its capabilities.

Any answers are highly appreciated

Edit: Okay i´ll try to put it straight for you: I want to find criteria that validate the capabilities of openGIS to produce maps. What do you think are such criteria? What options are required in a GIS program to produce efficient and clearly represented maps? This is as Barret correctly mentioned NOT about knowledge of a certain user, but solely about the capabilities of the program! The above criteria are only a small part of that, so to make clear what i mean.

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closed as unclear what you're asking by Mapperz Jan 7 '14 at 16:05

Please clarify your specific problem or add additional details to highlight exactly what you need. As it's currently written, it’s hard to tell exactly what you're asking. See the How to Ask page for help clarifying this question.If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

Altough I can take a guess on what you want to know, I would suggest you clearly state what your question is (that is, something ending in a question mark). Also, I'd like to point you to the help section on what questions to ask, this might be on the fringes. – Martin Jan 7 '14 at 13:52
Alright, thank you for the feedback. I´ll try to get it into a question: What are criteria for cartographic capabilities? Or maybe it is easier to say: by which criteria can i define how good an openGIS program is for producing maps? – steinerchr Jan 7 '14 at 14:07
Please add that to your question (Edit button). – Martin Jan 7 '14 at 14:09
Most users will only have strong knowledge on one/two GIS (example ArcGIS/QGIS but not AutoCAD). But AutoCAD can do representations better in 'some cases' than both other GIS mentioned. – Mapperz Jan 7 '14 at 16:06
better now? i think it should be clear now what i mean – steinerchr Jan 9 '14 at 8:10

Sounds like an interesting idea. Once you are finished with your paper/poster, perhaps you can share the results back on the thread.

Perhaps this is a good start: Wikipedia GIS Feature Comparison

For a feature-based comparison, I suggest starting with your experience with ArcMAP and then compare other products against it. Perhaps chart exactly what features you use when making your map. Then go to QGIS/leaflet/OpenLayers/etc... and try for the same result. Be careful not to confuse unfamiliarity with the products with 'ease of use.' If you used those other products every day, you might be as quick with them as you would be with ArcGIS. I cannot help you make a 'list of cartographic capabilities.'

However, making beautiful maps is fun and what I really love about GIS. Quickly understanding a map is better than having legends and features that make you work for the same end-result. This question is a perfect example of beautiful maps, which take imagination rather than a feature-set from a program.

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Added a link in my answer above. – Barrett Jan 9 '14 at 14:43

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