National Geographic Maps Expands Support for GIS, CAD and GPS Software Users

TOPO! Xport Pro Adds Award-Winning Topographic Maps to any Mapping Project

Washington, D.C. – May 3, 2005 — From civil engineers to surveyors to environmental planners to utility managers, users of geospatial software have a new tool to quickly add the highest-quality topographic maps to their projects with National Geographic Maps’ TOPO! Xport Pro. This one-stop, easy-to-use software enables users to add seamless topographic maps to any software that supports standard raster file formats. The maps are actual USGS quads that have been georeferenced and enhanced with up-to-date streets and roads and 3-D hill shading. The maps immediately provide context for other geospatial information and are ideal for reports, presentations, or use in the field. TOPO! Xport Pro is compatible with a wide range of spatially-enabled software including products from Autodesk, ESRI, Microsoft, Microstation, Integraph, MapInfo and more.

TOPO! Xport Pro is available online at or by calling 800-962-1643. Suggested retail price is $199.

“TOPO! Xport Pro is the easiest way to incorporate our award-winning topographic maps into spatially enabled software,” said Matt Heller, vice president, National Geographic Maps. “Our customers are doing more and more with our maps. From CAD to GPS to GIS, they are using National Geographic maps to improve their understanding of the world around them.”

TOPO! Xport Pro includes several layers of maps: two National Geographic atlas layers, USGS 1:500,000- and 1:100,000-scale topographic maps for the entire U.S., and up-to-date street overlays from TeleAtlas/Geographic Data Technology, Inc. (GDT). Users can turn roads on and off and add street and road names with a single click.

Also included in TOPO! Xport Pro is the TOPO! State Series dataset which provides the highest resolution 1:24,000-scale USGS topographic maps for a specific state or region. Each quad in the series employs true-color imaging to optimize raster maps for viewing and printing.

Three-D view and fly-thru functionality is also built-in. Users may look down a valley or stand atop a mountain and see the view from every angle. Users can soar along a route they have drawn and stop anywhere along the route to zoom and pan 360°. Resizable split-screens show 3-D and 2-D views simultaneously, making it easy to get a lay of the land.

A Live Map Update feature helps keep the USGS quads and TeleAtlas/GDT street data current. This component searches a user’s defined area to check for updates, and supplies the tools to quickly download the new information to replace older quads and roads.
Maps may be customized with numerous features. TOPO! Xport Pro allows users to turn on shaded relief or turn it off to view the original USGS maps; draw custom routes; generate elevation profiles with distance displayed; obtain GPS waypoints for any point on a map; transfer waypoints and routes between GPS and the software; import waypoints and store and organize them in an easy-to-use database; add photos, notes and Web links; and choose from a wide range of symbols to insert in the maps.

Raster maps exported from TOPO! Xport Pro are in GeoTIFF, TIFF or JPEG formats with world headers in ESRI, .TFW format or MapInfo .TAB format. These rasters can be referenced to either latitude or longitude or UTM map projections in either Nad83/WGS84 or NAD27 map datum. TOPO! Xport Pro requires Windows 95, 98, ME, 2000, XP, NT 4.0 or higher. 

National Geographic Maps employs 60 full-time cartographers, who produce four map supplements and about 100 page maps a year for National Geographic magazine, the official journal of the Society. NG Maps also produces maps for the Society’s other magazines, National Geographic Books (including the Society’s signature “Atlas of the World”), National Geographic Television & Film, (both the Web site and CD-ROM products) and the Society’s educational products. In addition, NG Maps produces Trails Illustrated maps, TOPO! digital maps, globes, wall maps, reference maps, state maps, city and recreational destination maps, and atlases. Maps are available to members and the public.