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Waldo Tobler

Professor Emeritus

Waldo Tobler received his degrees in Geography from the University of Washington in Seattle and is currently Professor Emeritus at UCSB. He has used computers in geographic research for over fifty years, with emphasis on mathematical modeling and graphic interpretations. He formulated the "first law of geography" in 1970 while producing a computer movie. He also invented the pycnophylactic method for smooth geographic mass-preserving data redistribution, contouring, and area interconversion. He is a member of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States and was a member and chairman of the Mathematical Social Science Board. Recent work involved building a global, latitude-longitude oriented, demographic information base, and a presentation on “The World is Shriveling as it Shrinks”. Current interests relate to ideas in computational geography including the analysis of spatially continuous geographical migration models using vector fields and scalar potentials.

More detail is at

Or see:P. Gould & Pitts, F., 2002, Geographical Voices, Syracuse University Press, 293-322, or P. Hubbard, et al, 2004, Key Thinkers on Space and Place, Sage, London, 301-305.

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