"The Origins of the Generic Mapping Tools: From Table Tennis to Geoscience" by Paul Wessel

Paul just published an article about GMT. Here is the Plain Language Summary. Below is the link for the full paper.

The Generic Mapping Tools originated back in the 1980s but was first publicly released in 1991. As graduate students at Lamont-Doherty (Columbia University), we (Paul Wessel and Walter H. F. Smith) rebelled against the awkward software and data formats used at that time and wrote new tools and formats from scratch to enable our dissertations. Over 30 years later the GMT software has a large global footprint and this has had a big positive effect on my research career. Doing something unique is a good pathway to a successful career, but what the pathway should be varies from generation to generation. Making contributions to a community of like-minded users has been one of my greatest enjoyments.

Wessel, P. (2024). The origins of the generic mapping tools: From table tennis to geoscience. Perspectives of Earth and Space Scientists , 5, e2023CN000231. https://doi.org/10.1029/2023CN000231