Surveying is the technique, profession, and science of determining the terrestrial or three-dimensional position of points and the distances and angles between them. A land surveying professional is called a land surveyor. These points are usually on the surface of the Earth, and they are often used to establish land maps and boundaries for ownership locations like building corners or the surface location of sub-surface features, or other purposes required by government or civil law, such as property sales.
Surveyors work with elements of geometry, trigonometry, regression analysis, physics, engineering, metrology, programming languages and the law. They use equipment like total stations, robotic total stations, GNSS (GPS) receivers, digital levels, GIS and surveying software.
Surveying has been an element in the development of the human environment since the beginning of recorded history. The planning and execution of most forms of construction require it. It is also used in transport, communications, mapping, and the definition of legal boundaries for land ownership. It is an important tool for research in many other scientific disciplines.