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GIS - Greatest Infrastructure Schema or Get It Surveyed?  It should be no secret by now that GIS is  beneficial to the Land Surveyor and that Land Surveying is beneficial to GIS.  In this apparent symbiosis of professions that generates confusion among some professionals and many the layman (your client?) there remains to this day "The Chicken and The Egg".  Which came first?  Of course, Land Surveying, after all the rope-stretchers in Biblical Egypt had no GIS.  But which came first when a potential client walks in the door with a screenshot of his land from the local GIS and wants to know how his property line can possibly be where it is shown?  That's when GIS lays an egg for the Land Surveyor.

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  • Get it surveyed NO DOUBT ABOUT IT.
    • I regularly use the GIS acronym as "Get It Surveyed" with clients and even in jest with the professionals who are responsible for creating and maintaining GIS databases and websites.  Why is there a lengthy disclaimer that must be agreed to before entering the GIS website which always includes some language to the effect that "this is not a survey" and "contact a Land Surveyor for precise boundary location"?  It is because data is only as good as the data used to create the data (metadata, which means data about data).  GIS professionals DO use survey maps performed by Land Surveyors to create the graphics that appear as "property lines" on an aerial photograph, but there is not always a survey available for a particular area, so the lines are produced by using other information such as deed descriptions which may tend to be geographically challenged when it comes to placement on a map which depicts parcels of land as "seamless".  In fact I am now completing a survey of Government Monuments which will establish or confirm coordinates which will ultimately be used by other Land Surveyors as evidence in future surveys, AND for the local GIS mapping professionals to IMPROVE the accuracy of the "property lines" that are shown on the GIS maps. It is without a doubt that when in doubt, get it surveyed.  It is also without a doubt that the inherent generality of the GIS maps regarding boundary location generates contracts for the Land Surveyor, from both the landowner and the local government.  By the way, one of the first things that I do when researching a boundary is to check the GIS imagery so that I can "Get It Surveyed" with the help of the "Greatest Infrastructure Schema" that I know of.
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