What did ptolemy do research in?

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Ptolemy or Claudius Ptolemaeus was a Roman scientist and mathematician who lived in Egypt during the first and second century AD dying in Alexandria. He published a number of important works on Astronomy Geography and Astrology. These formed the basis for much of Islamic and Western thinking. His name is Greek in origin the Roman first name indicating he took Roman citizenship. There is no real evidence he was related to the Ptolemic royal family of the same name whose kingdom died out with the death of Cleopatra and the annexation by Rome.
Ptolemy lived in Alexandria, Egypt from about 120 A.D to 180 A.D. He is known as The Father of astronomy. He developed the idea that the Earth was the center of the universe.  

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Ptolemy was an ancient Greek astronomer who lived in Egypt and developed a model for viewing the universe known as the Ptolemaic Universe. He believed all of the known spheres in the skies were on tracks that went around the Earth. This model was taken as "Gospel truth" for 1500 years until it was replaced by the Sun-center model put forth by Copernicus in the 16th century A.D.
I'm not sure why you think he revolutionized map making. He definitely created an idea that subsequent generations "believed" and then created maps based on his perspective of the universe. He had an active imagination...one that reigned supreme and unchallenged. He was a fantastic thinker for his day and very persuasive. Erastosthenes proved that the earth was round almost 200 years before the birth of Christ. It has always saddened me to know how many years of technology were stymied by ignoring his information.

The real revolutionary ideas in map making came about once it was accepted that the earth was round and then again with the discovery of a means to determine longitude by use of a sea-worthy clock. The mariners were great with latitude by use of sextants, but if you look at old maps (before the late 1700's) they show North America as close to Europe as Bermuda is to Florida.The scale was completely off as well as the juxtaposition of land masses/continents. It really has not been that long ago...  

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There were a number of other important people named Ptolemy in ancient times. The kings of Egypt during the Hellenistic Age were all named Ptolemy, or took that name when they became kings, with a total of fifteen kings. The first of these, Ptolemy Soter, was a general for Alexander the great, and, as possibly an illegitimate son of Philip of Macedon, could have been Alexander's older half brother. The only Ptolemaic monarch with any other name was Cleopatra.
The ancestral founder of the Greek city of Thebes, in the thirteenth century BC, was called Ptolemy, or Polemy.
There were a number of kings of other Hellenistic countries named Ptolemy.