15 minute map

(Only works for UK locations!)

So you need to put a map in your dissertation, paper or presentation, simply to show the locations of your study area or your sample sites.

There is no need to use any GIS tools for this, it is a lot easier. Let’s say we work on soil analysis in the Kinder Reservoir area in the Peak District, and now we need a map of our sample sites for a PowerPoint presentation.

  1. We go to http://edina.ac.uk/digimap/ and login.
  2. We click “Ordnance Survey Collection” and agree to the conditions for using the Ordnance Survey data.
  3. We select “Carto”, and then in the popup window click “Start Carto”.
  4. Once the map has loaded, we click the “Search” tab on the left and search for our area. We can search by coordinates, grid reference, postcode or place name. Let’s search for the place name “Kinder”. In the list of results we double-click “Kinder Resr, Derbyshire”.
  5. Using the zoom bar or the scale in the top bar we zoom roughly to our area of interest.
  6. In the top bar we click “Save image” and save the image as “studyarea.png in “My Documents”.
  7. We open PowerPoint and click “Insert > Picture > From File”, and select “My Documents\studyarea.png”.
  8. We use PowerPoint’s Drawing tools to add symbols for our sample sites, a legend and a title.

That’s all! This is how it looks:

Map in PowerPoint
Map in PowerPoint

As you can see, you don’t need to use complicated GIS tools – don’t make it more complicated than it is.


One thought on “15 minute map

  1. I like this. Did you know that you can do the same but with pdf documents from ROAM? ROAM is much nicer and faster than Carto (sorry carto it is true) but currently only allows you to export PDF maps. You can drag and drop these straight into Powerpoint 2007. Then you can annotate the maps to show your field sites or data.

    NOTE – earlier versions of Office/Powerpoint do not support the use of PDFs

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