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Cartographica Helvetica


Peter F. Tschudin:

Typometry: a successful technique for producing up-to-date maps

Cartographica Helvetica 36 (2007) 27–35


From the beginning, accuracy in mapping was the first aim of cartography, the second being actuality. Gathering news, drawing and engraving a map were more time consuming than the printing process itself. As the time of receiving new information shrank drastically during the 18th century, several attempts were made to reduce the engraving and printing process; furthermore, editing maps in different languages became a problem of time and money.

In Basel in 1776, Wilhelm Haas (1741–1800), in competition with Johann Gottlob Breitkopf in Leipzig, developed a type-setting system called typometry, which used geographic characters specified by August Gottlieb Preuschen from Karlsruhe. Nevertheless, developments in etching and stereo-typography plus the invention of "chemical printing" (lithography) by Alois Senefelder (1797) soon rendered typometry obsolete.

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