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Selecting OCAD Editions for Rogaining

OCAD 12 Professional image

Data Source

Data source is perhaps the key determinant to selection of an appropriate OCAD edition for rogaine mapping.

I am not apprised of the data sources of rogaining associations apart from Victoria. If the assumptions I have made are incomplete, you are welcome to contact me to discuss your situation.

MappersBezier curve image from an orienteering background

Mappers from an orienteering background who continue to use orienteering type data sources, are probably best to check out the companion post for orienteering clubs.

In particular be aware that if mapping at or near orienteering level of detail, it is likely OCAD Starter will not cope with the number of map objects on the larger rogaine maps.

Government and private data sources

Government may be state government units such as VicMap in Victoria or shire GIS units. Private would often include forestry companies and commercial geo data providers. The most comprehensive and easily usable data from these sources is in the format of ESRI Shape file sets.

Why not DXF? I used DXF files from VicMap until I found reasonably priced utility Arcv2CAD from Adelaide’s Guthrie CAD. It converts Shape files to DXF. I no longer had to research and be specific about the features I ordered for my DXF datasets. Just as importantly, the Shape file sets are far superior in terms of the wealth of information available to select for import.

With the advent of OCAD 10 and an upgrade to Professional I revelled in the ease of importing Shape files direct to OCAD. ArcV2CAD is amazingly flexible but that comes at a cost of learning a myriad of options pertaining to each Shape file set.

Existing map setsCorel Draw image

Some rogaining associations may have existing map sets that could be worth converting. For example, many of Victoria’s maps have been imported into Corel Draw from the Country Fire Authority (CFA) PDF map sets, and then massaged. Only OCAD Professional imports Corel Draw files (as PDFs).

An aspect to consider with existing maps sets is whether they are still appropriate. For example, the CFA map sets have long been superseded in terms of data accuracy and might be considered outside the pale of acceptability.

OCAD Editions

OCAD StarterOCAD 11 Starter icon

OCAD Starter imports DXF files and thus would be great value for the experienced DXF file user.

However, direct GPSr import and GPX file import indirectly from a GPSr, require OCAD Standard or Professional. And if mapping at or near orienteering detail, it is likely OCAD Starter will not cope with the number of map objects.

OCAD Standard

OCAD Standard appears to be of value to rogaine mapping only in the situation that Starter is OK apart from a limitation that Standard overcomes. For OCAD 11 Standard smallexample, Standard can import PDF files (from mapping agency downloads or Corel Draw).

OCAD Professional

Certainly Professional is the most productive edition for handling many and varied data sources especially Shape.

Other software

Guthrie CAD Viewer

Rogaine mappers might well consider purchasing CAD Viewer at just US$89. When I am handling DXF and Shape files I nearly always use CAD

Hepburn road names image
Shape: Hepburnshire road names

Viewer for a quick visual of the data. Apart from detecting use of a wrong DXF or Shape file, it also alerts me to having selected an oversize dataset that will import excessive objects. For example I have a dataset of the whole of Wombat Forest but use only a relatively small portion for any map.

Unfortunately there is no simple answer to having an oversize Shape dataset. At my request, OCAD AG have placed that facility on their wish list. Similarly, Guthrie CAD have added to their wish list the facility to output extent limited Shape files from Arcv2CAD.

CAD Viewer bonus

Rogaining purchasers of a new professional licence may elect to have CAD Viewer as their bonus instead of Course Setting.

Your comment is welcome