What is GIS

So … what is GIS exactly all about?

GIS (Geographic Information System) is a geotechnology incorporating software and hardware which understands the geospatial concept of location. Via a computer system, geographic datasets can be used to visualise and present geographic data. End-users can then clearly see, analyse and understand the relationships between people, patterns and place.

GIS is a Management Tool
Geographical Information Systems are considered to be an integral function of management in a wide range of industries across the globe. Nevertheless, many people go about their daily lives having never heard of GIS. Many remain unaware how it silently operates in the background of society enabling populations to thrive. Consider for example:

  • location data and geospatial technology are working dynamically in real time. From the minute your alarm clock goes off (GPS controlled) to the next minute you hit the shower (utility services are prolific users of geographic data). From the moment you jump into your car and take the daily commute to work (satnav and realtime traffic updating). 

Business Data
80% of all data created contains a key component: location. Typically embedded as a coordinate value, this type of data can be very quickly visualised, questioned, analysed. Interpreting the data allows us to better understand relationships, to recognise patterns and to react swiftly to trends. Geographic Information Specialists can view, edit, extrapolate and present geospatial data and location intelligence via the application of digital mapping and hard copy cartographic products. 

How Does GIS Help?
GIS can assist many businesses and organisations regardless of size in almost any industry. Geographic information management allows for better decision making. This is because it increases business efficiency, streamlines operations, makes savings on business expenditure and shortens response times. With these benefits to business its easy to see why there is an increasing interest in the benefits of GIS.

For a greater insight into Geographic Information Systems please visit the following Wikipedia link: more info on geospatial and geomatic technology