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Designed Maps: A Sourcebook for GIS Users 1st Edition
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Each of the six sections addresses a particular broad category of map (reference, thematic, special-purpose, etc.), and each has one map that the author has reproduced in four different styles to emphasize different features or optimize for printing. Several other example maps then follow, each with a paragraph to explain some of the techniques used in its production. The book ends with a section that shows how to recreate the effects in the book using ArcMap, which exposed me to features I didn't know existed and lots of new ideas on how to use the familiar dialogs.
I would recommend this book to anyone who has a basic feel for how to use GIS software to make maps but doesn't necessarily feel the need to delve into cartographic theory.
Brewer allows even the most casual GIS user the ability to understand the concepts presented in her examples, breaking down how each of the individual segments can be modified to highlight different cartographic aspects. "Designed Maps" also does a wonderful job of explaining how the map is intended to be used and what the user is supposed to see. I particularly enjoyed the compare and contrast segments which depicted the ways that the same information could be displayed in different manners to highlight individual components.
"Designed Maps" is a must have a for a GIS library. Although the book is published by ESRI Press (it features several tips specific to ArcMap), I found it useful for understanding the specifics of cartographic representation on pretty much any platform.