Over the last couple of years the Ocean Basemap team has concentrated on creating a consistent and easy to use basemap that contains significant bathymetric detail. We have had many compliments on the map (thank you all) and we believe that it is a cartographically pleasing product that is a good basis for mapping content in the oceans. However, we do not plan to rest on our laurels.
Since the first release of the Ocean Basemap each update has concentrated mainly on the map content and not on the cartography. For the upcoming release, however, we have decided to make some changes to the map itself.
Firstly, in response to user comments, we have developed a version of the map that contains a separate operational layer with the following layer types:
All hydrographic features, including:
- Ocean and Sea names
- Subsurface features
Place names and boundaries, including names of:
We currently have a version of this in testing and are planning to release that this fall. The current version of the basemap will remain available for approximately 1 year before being deprecated.
The second planned change is the development of a version of the basemap in a polar projection to help with maps of the Arctic. As sea-ice continues to recede, maps of the Arctic Ocean are of increasing importance. As a result we are currently researching how best to generate a map in a polar projection with the same look and feel as the existing basemap and with sufficient detail to make the map useful. We currently do not have a release date scheduled for this new basemap but will announce it when we do.
Once again, thank you for your feedback on the Ocean Basemap. We hope that these planned updates make it an even better product for your needs. If you have further ideas to improve the Ocean Basemap, please contact the Ocean Basemap team.