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Geographical Information Systems:

Future Technology and Market Trends
Part 1


Geographic Information Systems: Future Technology

and Market Trends Part 1
Geographic Information Systems (GIS), is an electronic data system which captures, stores,
analyses and displays information that is obtained by geographical referencing. Generally,
the data in these systems is stored as multi-dimensional co-ordinates in a relational
database, which are retrieved to perform spatial queries and analysis.
A GIS system allows to record a base map with a geospatial referencing (Geographical
Referencing) as longitudes or latitudes and then adds additional layers of other information
depending on the request made. Importantly, that information is identified using the same
geospatial referencing made by latitudes or longitudes. It can show many different kinds of
data on one map. This enables users to easily see, analyses and understand patterns and
relationships across various domains.
Geographic Information Systems application have wide range of uses from locating
indigenous people, communities, research institutions, environmental scientists, health
organizations; land planning, telecommunications and public sectors. The usage of GIS
systems is growing rapidly with increased deployment by government and businesses.
There is virtually no limit to the kind of information that can be analyzed using GIS and as
technology is growing, applications of GIS in different industries is trending. However, a
point to be noted is that the accuracy and efficiency of the data retrieved from GIS is largely
dependent on the availability of accurate, spatial information (as base of GIS is geography).
Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Technologies has evolved significantly since its
emergence in late 1960. In recent years, mapping and data analysis has become an integral
part of analyzing geographical space. GIS software has been evolved from providing
descriptive (where & what) to prescriptive (so what and why) information about
geographical space. Maps are increasingly being used from understanding physical
description of geographical space to understanding complex spatial relationships by
interpreting mapping data and combining map layers.
Evolution of Geographic Information Systems can be categorized into Following Phases
Phase 1: Era of Computer Mapping for Automating Map Drafting Process
In early 1970, computer systems were used for automating map drafting process. Twodimensional (2D) coordinates were used to define geographical space in the form of points,
lines and area. This has helped users in changing a portion of a map and redrafting the
entire image automatically. Hence computer mapping were successful in automating the
map drafting processes.
Phase 2: Database Management Integration for User-Friendliness of Geographic
In 1980, computer mapping were integrated with spatial database management systems.
The integration helped in improving user-friendliness of geospatial analysis. In this, each

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geographic feature were assigned a unique identification number enabling users to retrieve
location information by simply pointing to any location on the map. In addition, a user can
conduct a geographical search by specifying a set of parameters about the location, and get
the result displayed as a map.
Phase 3: Map Modeling and Analysis Using Digital Maps
Soon, during 1990, GIS technology evolved from descriptive query based processes to
comprehensive map analysis using digital maps. In this, spatial information was represented
numerically rather than traditional analog based inked lines on a map. These digital maps
were often a set of floating maps with a common registration enabling computers to look
up to these floating digital maps. The digital representation of maps helped user in
conducting several analytical processing unlike traditional approach of manual analytic
Phase 4: Widespread Adoption and Social Acceptance of Geographic Information
Increasing acceptance of GIS technologies by several businesses lead to the emergence of
newer map forms and processing environment. Several vendors started offering GIS SaaS
services and tailored application based GIS solutions. The emergence of integration and
interoperability standards lead to improved flexibility of GIS applications with custom views
and display capability, and integration of other analytical tools. This resulted in widespread
adoption and social acceptance of GIS technology in a variety of applications.
GIS systems were increasingly integrated with global positioning systems (GPS) and remote
sensing imagery systems. GIS integration with GPS brought the technology into the palm of
the hand for understanding geographic positioning with instant digital maps. The new
processing environment and evolution of display technologies have significantly transformed
GIS application for spatial information.
This is how the traditional GIS systems based on 2D paper map has transformed to provide
more accurate spatial information into visual 3D maps leading to widespread adoption by
different industry applications.
In our next blog, we will provide insights about how future mega trends are further
transforming the GIS system. Our next blog will focus on:

Impact of Virtual Reality and Immersive imaging

3D-GIS to 4D-GIS Systems with time as the fourth dimension
Predictive modeling and Prescriptive Analysis

For more information about GIS Market Trends, please refer our latest GIS Systems Market
Research or write to info@Quadrant-Solutions.com
Keywords: Geospatial Information Systems, Geographic Information Systems, GIS
Technology, Future Trends, Technology Trends, Market Trends, GPS Systems, Geospatial
Referencing, Mapping, Digital Maps, Map Modeling , Map Analysis

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Quadrant Knowledge Solutions

Quadrant's Market Research

About Quadrant Knowledge Solutions

Quadrant Knowledge Solutions (http://quadrant-solutions.com/) is a global advisory and
consulting firm focused on helping clients in achieving business transformation goals with
Strategic Business, and Growth advisory services.
Our Strategic Business, and Growth Advisory services are organized specifically to help
clients develop and validate strategies based on global mega trends, understand the
business potential and untapped opportunities, and strategies for growth.

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