ARC2GIS Essay: A Geographic Information System (GIS) does not store maps. Discuss.by Caroline Seawright
Year 2 Essay for Geographical Information Systems: Techniques and Applications at LaTrobe University, Oct 2012.
Computer-based Geographic Information Systems (GIS) originated in the 1960s (Coppock & Rhind 1991, p. 23; The GiS TiMELiNE 2000a; The GiS TiMELiNE 2000b), and have enjoyed a rapid increase in use since the 1990s (Coppock & Rhind 1991, p. 21). They are, as Curry (1998, p. xi) contends, very difficult to discuss "in ways that are not strictly technical". As such, GIS can be described as an "integrated collection of computer software and data" (ESRI GIS Dictionary n.d.) used to view, manage, analyse and model spatial data and processes through the use of database links, which access a variety of source records, encompassing both text and image data. Both types of data are used by the program to produce maps. Yet, as ArcGIS can demonstrate, they do not store the maps themselves, but save files related to the manipulation of the data. GIS is not a tool for storing maps, but a tool used in many different fields of interest to deal with geographic data and spatial analysis.
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Seawright, C 2012, A Geographic Information System (GIS) does not store maps. Discuss., Articles by Caroline Seawright, <http://www.thekeep.org/~kunoichi/ kunoichi/themestream/ ARC2GIS.html>.
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