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As a matter of fact, tracing is always rather random. One may say: "I am orderly digitizing road network" but hardly know which line will be selected at the next crossroad. Will it be right or left turn, line continuation upward or downward, and so on?

Grotty results of hard-substratum map scanning with a $8.000 scanner set us thinking about use of inexpensive office equipment.

Mask filtering is a powerful tool for processing black and white raster. Proper use of mask filters can solve a huge range of tasks, from preparing a raster terrain contour lines to highlight the marshes.

Source data are seldom represented by snow-white paper with black lines. Rather low-grade initially, they become even worse because of long storage. In short, it is usually impossible to get a binary (black-and-white) raster file without loss of information at scanning.

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