Human Geography

Download A Primer of GIS: Fundamental Geographic and Cartographic by Francis Harvey PhD PDF

By Francis Harvey PhD

This pragmatic publication introduces key options and abilities to organize scholars to appreciate and use geographic info structures (GIS). The textual content completely explains what geographic info is, the way it is represented and analyzed, and what it communicates approximately human and environmental actions and occasions that occur on our planet. simple ideas of map making and map interpreting are built-in with discussions of proper info applied sciences and purposes. Written in an obtainable sort, the textual content is equipped into 4 components that may be utilized in any series in entry-level and extra really good GIS classes. hassle-free gains comprise useful examples and workouts, enticing vignettes, and necessary net assets.

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Extra info for A Primer of GIS: Fundamental Geographic and Cartographic Concepts

Example text

This question demands an answer that is straightforward but the issues at hand (representation, use, knowledge, meaning) are anything but clear. The resources identified in this chapter point to relevant literature. For simplicity’s sake, you can say that information is data that means something. In other words, information makes sense, somehow. Data is what is stored based on observations and measurements. Perhaps when the data is collected it means something, but when it is stored in a database and eventually used by other people who weren’t involved in its collection, it may mean nothing at all.

In other words, one person’s data is another person’s information. How do we know? Apply the sense test. If what you see, regardless of its form, makes sense, it is information because sense, or meaning, only comes if the thing you see has an effect; if it doesn’t make sense, it is just data. Of course, this only means it makes sense for you. Making the same sense for others is a much harder, but more important, test. Goals of Cartography and GI / 25 Summary Geographic information and maps are ways of representing what people see and observe.

With the frameworks and conventions, then maps are very complex and hard to read. That’s why in places where almost all people need to use a map (at some point), that map is usually very simple and shows a specially highlighted symbol where you (and the map) are. Geographic information and most maps lack these. They are very frustrating to use without understanding the framework and conventions of maps and geographic information. Of course, we need also to consider the cultural biases and ideologies of maps.

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