GIS DEFINITION, HISTORY, COMPONENTS AND APPLICATIONS OF GIS
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The acronym GIS stands for Geographic Information System or Science where G stands for any Geographical features with reference to a particular location on the earth surface. I stands for Information about geographic features stored in tabular form and S stands for System which consists of software, hardware and geographically referenced data.
GIS (GEOGRAPHIC INFORMATION SYSTEM)
A set of tool for
- Transforming and Display of Spatial Data from the Real World
“A Geographic Information System (GIS) is a computer based tool for capturing, storing, checking, analysing and displaying data, which are spatially referenced to the Earth.” Chorley
“A powerful set of tools for collection, storing, retrieving at will transforming and displaying spatial data from the real world” Burrough
The phrase, “geographic information system”, was coined by Roger Tomlinson in 1968, when he published the scientific paper, “A Geographic Information System for Regional Planning”. Tomlinson, acknowledged as the “father of GIS”.
Roger Tomlinson drives the creation of the Canada Geographic Information System (CGIS) in 1964
First National GIS System
- Land Use and Natural resource Inventory System (LUNRIS), New York 1967
Minnesota Land Management System (MLMIS), Minnesota, 1969
Arc Info introduced in 1981
First major commercial GIS application.
Components of GIS
Geographic Information System (GIS) integrates five key components i.e, Hardware, Software, Data, People and Procedures.
A GIS software runs on a wide range of computers varying from centralized servers to desktop computers. The hardware also comprises of storage, display, input and output sub-systems.
The key software components for GIS are
Software tool for data entry, editing and maintenance of geographic information.
A Database Management System (DBMS)
Software related to analysis, manipulation and visualization.
A Graphical User Interface (GUI) for Accessing the tools.
The digital map forms the basic data input for GIS. A GIS integrates the spatial data with other data resources for processing and analysis. It can even use a DBMS to manage spatial data.
Human resource in the form of engineers, specialists, scientists, policymakers and many others are indispensable for the success of the GIS system. These people use GIS to evolve a decision support system and solve real-time problems.
It include the retrieval of data, input into the system, stored, managed, transformed, analyzed and finally presented in a final output. A successful GIS operates according to well-designed plans and processing.
Applications of GIS:
- Farm management
- Pest/Disease tracking
- Crop monitoring
- Yield Prediction
- Soil analysis
Natural Resource Management
- Water Recources
Planning and Economic Development
- Land use/zoning
- Emergency Preparedness
- Population Forecast
- Market Analysis
- Climate Change
- Urban Growth
- Sustainable Agriculture
- Water Quality and Availability
- Natural Hazards: Seismicity, Weather Events.
- Land cover and land use analysis
- Modelling watersheds
- Soil Erosion
- Forest Management
- Conservation and Protected Areas
Land Use Planning and Management