National Geographic

National Geographic Maps Now Available on Avenza’s PDF Maps App

Alliance provides new platform to access more than 500 National Geographic maps via Avenza’s database

TORONTO (January 28, 2013)National Geographic Maps, one of the most trusted names in cartography for nearly 100 years, has joined with Avenza Systems Inc. to offer a new channel to access its rich map content. The alliance enhances Avenza’s digital map database by adding more than 500 maps from National Geographic, a world-renowned source, and furthers National Geographic Maps’ established reach with mobile consumers.

The Avenza PDF Maps app takes advantage of geospatial technology and allows travelers, recreationists and map lovers to view, acquire and interact with maps on their mobile devices, including iPhone and iPad, without worrying about data accessibility and international roaming charges. In addition, PDF Maps offers an in-app store to facilitate the transaction and delivery of those maps, consolidating, in a digital format, consumers’ access to hundreds of maps from multiple publishers.

“In the last decade, advances in technology have shifted how consumers receive and use information, and we have responded by making our rich map content available on a variety of platforms,” said Charles Regan, senior vice president and general manager, National Geographic Maps. “Avenza’s PDF Maps app provides a unique way for consumers to access our content with an easy-to-use in-app map store and a set of robust features that will enhance the map user’s experience.”

Hundreds of maps from National Geographic Maps’ extensive library are now available in Avenza’s PDF Maps system, including popular travel and destination titles covering five continents, historical and thematic maps, and educational and reference titles. The app provides constant access to geographic information and points of interest, with additional interactive tools such as measuring, place marking and location tagging. PDF Maps operates without the risk of lost reception, due to cell tower proximity – making it the ultimate traveling tool, as it does not rely on an Internet connection.

“Avenza PDF Maps provides the ability for anyone to share map-related information by documenting locations with customized notes, photos and descriptions,” said Ted Florence, president of Avenza Systems Inc. “This expands the utility of a map beyond location guidance, as it is also a tool to share experiences and locales with notes and photos. We continue to strengthen our community of map publishers and further advance the mapping tools consumers demand, and we look forward to seeing how the industry evolves in a digital age.”

PDF Maps is available now on the iTunes App Store free of charge for personal use. National Geographic maps can be accessed via the PDF Maps in-app store. For more information about the app, visit the Avenza PDF Maps website at or Avenza’s main website at Pricing of each map is set by the publisher, and free maps remain free to users through the PDF Maps in-app map store.

About National Geographic Maps

National Geographic Maps was established as a division of the National Geographic Society in 1915 and has been producing maps for National Geographic magazine and other Society media for nearly 100 years. National Geographic Maps publishes wall maps, outdoor recreation maps, travel maps, interactive maps, atlases and globes that inspire people to care about and explore their world. For more information visit

About Avenza Systems Inc.

Avenza Systems Inc. is an award-winning, privately held corporation that provides cartographers and GIS professionals with powerful software tools for making better maps as well as the PDF Maps mobile mapping system. In addition to software offerings for Mac and Windows users, Avenza offers value-added data sets, product training and consulting services. For more information visit the Avenza website at

Christine Simmons / Shana Starr
LFPR Public Relations – (for Avenza)
949-502-6200 ext. 320/209
[email protected] / [email protected]

Kelsey Flora
National Geographic
[email protected]

National Geographic '7 Billion' App Review

Over the past week, I read all the content of National Geographic's '7 Billion' iPad app. I found it of excellent quality and pretty interesting. Interesting enough for me to spend some time sharing my thoughts about it with you. 'Geography' is at the core of the topic and content of the app. The iPad app is free "for a limited time", so I encourage you to download it right away (provided you have an iPad of course).

But first, here's the official description: "National Geographic magazine presents 7 Billion: How your world will change - to coincide with the arrival of the 7 billionth human being to our world. This app explores the challenges of a growing human population in a world of limited resources with informative videos, interactive maps, in-depth articles, and stunning photography. 

Featured content includes….

  • How big is 7 Billion? An insightful video of the demographic trends that got us here today and how it will impact us tomorrow.
  • Birth of a New Brazil: How big families are out, to the credit of strong-willed women—and the steamy soaps that inspired them.
  • The Face of Seven Billion Interactive: Tap on the “typical face” to find out who the most typical human is
  • Rift in Paradise: As the global population increases Africa’s Albertine Rift gives us a glimpse of what is at stake in the decades ahead.
  • Bangladesh: See how resourceful residents of this country refuse to give in to rising seas
  • Food Ark: Explore how preserving heirlooms seeds and breeds are crucial if we hope to feed our hungry world.
  • And to be incorporated into the app in December 2011, Cities are the Solution: They may be the best way to lift people from poverty and preserve the environment."

And now my notes:

  • The app contains several beautiful photos with captions, quite a few slightly interactive maps, about three short videos, and about a hundred pages of articles to read
  • The articles are generally very well written, documented and quite pertinent, well worth the time
  • The design is the app is beautiful, and so are the maps, but in both cases, design takes precedence on usability. Ideally, maps must be beautifully designed -and- usable
  • The surprise of the first section, is that despite population having increased exponentially in in the past decades, most scenarios indicate we'll stabilize and start to decrease in the middle of this century. In fact, population is even already on a decreasing course in a lot of parts of the world, notable exceptions are India and Africa, so the problem is not population, it's resources, mainly food and energy (both are linked of course (population <=> resources & food <=> energy), everything is related, and as we know in geography, near things are more related than distant things)
  • The second section, focusing on Brazil, shows that you don't even need laws to reduce family sizes, you need "modernity"
  • The section on Africa is insightful, and shows that we're not safe from additional Rwanda-type wars, since population is not evenly distributed and so are resources. When people starve, they don't care about "national natural reserves" and are willing to pillage anything they can to survive (this reminds me of Collapse, by Jared Diamond)
  • The section on Bangladesh is reassuring. When we don't have access to much, we do with what we have and imagination helps, but be ready to move frequently and systematically adapt to new situations. To be bold, I'm not sure we're that flexible in the "modern" world
  • There's a section on oceans acidification, dubbed "climate change's lesser-known evil twin". Oceans are degrading at a dramatic rate, mostly because we don't do anything and continue with our unsustainable practices, and we're going to start paying the price real soon 
  • There's also a section on food production, but I don't remember reading anything surprising in there
  • The last part of the app, titled "Cities are the Solution" is not yet available (next month), I will certainly read it once it becomes available

In short, it's a great informative app that I can only recommend. It's well documented, beautiful and pertinent. Anyone else has comments?

On the same topic and in addition to what we already shared, O'Reilly has an entry on visualizations of 7 billion humans.

Friday Geonews: Universal Location Service, GTA in Google Earth, ESRI in the Cloud, and much more

Here's the now traditional weekly dose of geonews in batch mode.

On the ESRI front:

On the Google front:

On the open data / open source front:

In the LBS category:

In the miscellaneous category:

In the maps category:

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