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The University of Saskatchewan initiated the Atlas of Saskatchewan Project in 1996. The first phase of this project was completed in November 1999 with the publication of the Millennium Edition of the Atlas of Saskatchewan. It was very favourably reviewed and received two Saskatchewan Book Awards. It has come to be recognized as an essential source of information on the physical, social and economic landscapes of our province. The Atlas is proving to be a valuable tool for academics, researchers, administrators, professional planners, teachers, the business community and the general public both within and beyond Saskatchewan.

The new edition of the Atlas was produced using state-of-the-art computer mapping and geographic information system technology. This resulted in the compilation of a comprehensive, provincial-scale digital geographic database that will soon be available through SaskGeomatics.  This database, and the digital map files compiled during the first phase of the project, laid the foundation for the second phase; namely, the production of an interactive, multi-media CD-ROM Edition of the Atlas of Saskatchewan. This phase was completed in November 2000.

The CD-ROM Edition introduces new material on our provincial flower, post-glacial landscape development, birdsongs and the languages of First Nations people. However, its primary purpose is to present Atlas information in a new, interactive, multi-media environment. It uses animation and sound to help communicate geographical information. It also introduces new “pan and scan” maps to help users explore the richness and depth of the larger and more detailed maps. More photographs are provided to supplement maps and text. Dynamic links between graphical and textual material help the user navigate the tremendously complex body of information that was compiled for the Atlas. 

The next phase of the Atlas project will focus on the development of an Internet Edition that will allow users to work directly with the Atlas database to query, analyze and customize maps.  

Celebrating.gif (6316 bytes)The Saskatchewan Atlas is useful to schools, colleges, universities, libraries, business and industry, government departments and crown agencies, and the general public - not only in the province, but worldwide.  Its multi-format publication will make it not only a basic reference for educators and administrators, but also a promotional tool for tourism and business.  The book and CD-ROM are now available at various locations for the year 2000 celebrations of Saskatchewan's 95th birthday and the Millennium.  The projected completion date for the full family of new Saskatchewan Atlas products is the year 2005 - Saskatchewan's 100th birthday.