Acta Geographica Sinica ›› 2001, Vol. 56 ›› Issue (7s): 1-7.doi: 10.11821/xb20017s001

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Along the Historcal Way up to Knowledge Innovation

CHEN Shu-peng   

  1. Institute of Geographic Sciences and Natural Resources Research, CAS, Beijing 100101, China
  • Received:2001-06-15 Revised:2001-07-11 Online:2001-12-25 Published:2001-12-25
  • Supported by:

    National Natural Science Foundation of China, No. 498017; Knowledge Innovation Item of CAS, No. CXIOG-D001-01


In China, cartographic cultural inheritance conserved to now can be traced back to inscriptions on bones or tortoise shells of the Shang Dynasty, which was about 3,500 years ago. Its information medium was bones, copper, gold, silk, papers or stone inscriptions, all of which were made of the most advanced materials and craftworks at that time. It’s content included hunting, gardening, grave burying, city and geography, all of these also showed advancement of science and technology, comprehensive social requirement of military administration, traffic and roads, urban planing etc. They supplied a multi-cartography-gene base for world and resource of knowledge innovation for progress of science and technology. Farmland irrigation and “Jing Tian Zhi” (The Square-Fields System) of 6th-4th century B.C. gestated grid rudiment, mapping principal in “Ji Li Hua Fang” (Counting-in-miles and Drawing-in grids) brought forward the 3rd century A.D. affected about 1,000 years from carved stone map of 11th century to chorography and countrywide map of Yuan, Ming, and Qing dynasties. Biorbit system overlaid by latitude-longitude and grid system appeared after biexchangment of oriental and occidental mapping science and technology about 16th century. In the 20th century of remote sensing and computer aided mapping widespread, grid map bobbed up like a cork, it is exerted particular function and created resplendence for solving matching of pixel and statistical cells. With the flying development of science and technology on aerial photograph, Remote Sensing and Global Position System etc. in the 20th century, social function of maps has changed distinctly--it is being drifted step by step to client information server. That is: firstly it is reverse with traditional mapping craftwork program, small-scale maps go ahead, after large scale maps come to heel. Thus it accelerated and simplified enormously mapping craftworks, improved efficiency, advanced adjustment of mapping industry structure, gained valuable time for science prediction and forecast. Secondly it was widely applied in new fields of geosciences, space science, bioscience, and maps were used as graph-thinking method of spatial-temporal analysis, data mining and knowledge discovering. These made delightful progress for discovering new geographical distribution law or situation. Chinese science-technology progress in the 20th century, for example, full digital surveying map, digital mechanical test, Chinese characters edition composition and map-making system, science prediction theory and ways of prototype-model method, all of which directly made roads even for knowledge innovation and technology revolution of cartography. One of thought—“Cartographic methodology for geo-information science” with Chinese characteristic is being explored and researched. Traditional spatial-temporal method has made golden experience and social-economic benefit in geo-science fields. Based on remote sensing image analysis, satellites positioning technology and network technology, depending on integrating of geographical information system, including status, diagnose, model and virtual reality during the course of information flow, “cartographic methodology for geo-information science” will be applied in historical inversion and future prediction, it has been made primary research in solving spatial situation and advantage appraise of eco-environment evaluation, urban growth, resource collocation, its prospect will be very broad.

Key words: culture gene, grid mapping, drifting of map function, cartographic methodology for geo-information science