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FAQs: Latitude/Longitude Coordinates in GIS Maps

Question: Can the latitude and longitude coordinates in Pontem be used to determine precise grave digging locations?

Answer: Unless Pontem is supplied with survey documents with coordinates and measurements, the GIS data developed for Pontem software is digitized based on a "best-fit" method using the world imagery basemap associated with ESRI software. Grave coordinates typically do not perfectly match the actual coordinates. The lat/long coordinates created by Pontem are accurate to the referenced location on the basemap (taking into account a slight margin of error associated with the basemap). Even if the calculated lat/long was exactly in the desired location, it would require new survey-grade equipment to precisely obtain that location in the actual cemetery. the coordinates would however be accurate enough to direct someone to an approximate location (within a couple of feet) as long as the feature appears in the correct location on the orthoimagery.

Question: Is the specific grave location layer a computed latitude/longitude coordinate?

Answer: The latitude/longitude coordinates are calculated using the center of the grave, based off of the orthorectified imagery basemap.

Question: What is the best use of GIS Mapping, as it relates to public interactions?

Answer: A GIS map is a good way to provide visitors with a general grave location (down to a couple of feet) and the information associated with grave plots. If the source documents provided are very clear and detailed, grave locations (coordinates) are typically very close to their location in the actual cemetery.

Question: What is the precision factor of latitude and longitude coordinates, as related to Online Burial Search, Cemetery 360, and other integrated features?

Answer: The coordinates provided are a very precise point, but the precision of the point is only as accurate as the descriptions provided on the source documents. If a grave appears to be in the correct location on the basemap, the latitude/longitude associated with the GIS polygon will be very close to the actual coordinates.

Question: Are GIS map coordinates appropriate for work order deployment?

Answer: GIS data is typically not used as a source for "breaking ground" in a project. Major construction requires a surveyor on site. As long as the grave appears to be in the correct location on the basemap, the coordinates will be accurate enough to orient an employee in the cemetery to within a couple of feet of the desired location.

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