Selasa, 08 September 2009

Geographic Information Science

Geographic Information Science...

Figure 1. Aji Putra Perdana @ geospatial learning office

My name is Aji Putra Perdana, right now i am just an ordinary person that still interest to study more and learn in my daily life as geospatial learning person. Graduated from Faculty of Geography Gadjah Mada University majoring Cartographic and Remote Sensing at 2006. Helped the GIS Laboratory until 2008 and join with Combating Dengue Fever Project from January 2008 until June 2009.

Aji is still looking the way that what Aji really wanna be by learn day by day on geospatially thinking. So he created an imagination main actors, THOLE and CAKEP to make the stories become easy to share and with free of words that can be combined without any limitation.

Thanks to Allah SWT, my family and the support of Foundation also Dengue Jogja Team, so i can also learn more and more about geospatial learning from others country. Thanks also for the lecturers or educational staff members of Faculty of Geography for the Geospatial Learning.

Today, after eat for Sahur, i was so excited when i read the Global Geospatial Magazine. It's inspired me to write something that i would like to start it with "try to seeks and learn together with THOLE and CAKEP about what is Geographic Information Science?"

Thole : " I would like to share a little bit about Geographic Information Science (GISc or GISci) according informations that i have read and learn based on my own opinion also. At the first time, i just heard GIS not GISc or GISci, it was a System only, because GIS is stand for Geographic Information System. But when the times go on, geospatial information and technoloy become more and more important and be part of our daily life. GIS people's start think and says that GIS not only a system, but it's become Science. In the Faculty of Geography-Gadjah Mada University, Yogyakarta, Indonesia there is field of study "Geographic Information Science and Regional Development. Kang Cakep, can you help me ?"

Cakep : "Yes,'re right, maybe we can share each other. According to Goodchild in Spatial Information Science and Geographical Information Science, also from Wilson and Fotheringham in The Handbook of Geographic Information Science. Geographic information science (GISc or GISci) is the academic theory behind the development, use, and application of geographic information systems (GIS). It is concerned with people, hardware, software, and geospatial data. GISc addresses fundamental issues raised by the use of GIS and related information technologies (Goodchild 1990, 1992; Wilson and Fotheringham 2007)."

Thole : "Kang Cakep, may I say that GISc is relevant to others or many scientific disciplines ?"

Cakep : "When i searching and googling, there are three central issues of GISc. They are the modifiable areal unit problem, complete spatial randomness and spatial autocorrelation. GISc is relevant to researchers from many scientific disciplines because these three central issues are often ignored in the application of statistical hypothesis testing. GISc argues that both Bayesian and Traditional statistical inference should consider spatial structure of the data being analyzed. You can see the picture below (Fig.2)."

Figure 2. Generic Issues in GISc

Thole : "OK, i can see that. Can you help me to understand more and more regarding GISc ? What is the terminology of GISc (Geographic Information Science) ?"

Cakep : "The terminology of GISc (Geographic Information Science) is contestable because the definitions of the words depend on user preference. GISc is one of two main types of Information Science."

Thole : "I am very interest to learn about GISc (Geographic Information Science), because Kang Cakep always told me about Geospatial Learning."

Cakep : "Geographic refers to spatial dimensions, particularly but not necessarily on Earth's land. Science refers to inferences about natural law based on either classical statistical hypothesis testing or Bayesian statistics. Non-science is the writing of opinions without reference to analysis of measured data. Science and literature are two types of art, art is a type of culture, culture is a type of human thought."

Thole : "When i learn right now, GIS or GISc is closely related to Technology. What is Technology and why GISc is science and technology ?"

Cakep : "Technology is the use of machines to solve human problems. Non-technology is the beauty, the art, the emotional enjoyments that make animals feel joy, and the civilized culture that defines humanity apart from other animals. GISc is entangled with technology but distinctions can be made. Information Technology emphasizes the machines and the hardware. Whereas, Information Science is focused on how humans use information to understand nature (humanity being one small type of nature). Information Science emphasizes the logic, methods, software, the mental structures."

Thole : "Nice explanation Kang Cakep. How about Information and Data or Geographic Data ?"

Cakep : "
Information is one type of human thought. Data is one type of information, particularly the archival of information for later use. Two basic types of information are spatial and temporal."

Thole : "Can you explain to me about type of data ?"

Cakep : "There are nine basic types of data: words, numbers, symbols, points, lines, areas, volumes, tones and rhythms. Vision and hearing are the primary information senses for which we archive data. For example a movie is a time series of images, images are made from pixels. Pixels are a type of point data, regularly spaced rather than irregularly spaced. So the data storage of a movie is a time series of regularly spaced points representing red, green, blue colors."

Thole : "And then...what is the main focus of GIS regarding types of data ?"

Cakep : "Geographic Information systems focus primarily on spatial data types: points, lines and areas, tied to a relational database. Much of what we think of as Information Science is actually Temporal Information Science, as opposed to Geographic Information Science. Of course space-time is one thing but it is very useful to separate space and time when we store data in computers."

Thole : "space and time...our palnet of earth can be beautifully spatiallized and become more important the way of information sharing. Geographic data, can you explain more ?"

Cakep :"Geographic data usually refers to the spatial database records tied with points, lines or areas. Geographic information is the result of an interpretation of both the world and of mapped data."

Thole : "I think, our world is very complex. Do we draw all the phenomena or features in the world ?"

Cakep : "As the real world is complex, choices over how the features of interest are described in the database, such as how the percentage canopy closure for a given forest results in alternative but equally valid interpretations of the same raw data. Thus, in the creation of informational representations from data, choices about how and what to map are made. It is important to recognize that information is socially constructed, as it depends on decisions and choices, themselves influenced by institutional and political contexts. Objective measurement of the empirical world is impossible to achieve without a subjective researcher and database designer. The entanglement of a subjective observer and the objective true world is the topic of phenomenology. People influence the information, the information influences people."

Thole : "Hmmmm....long explanation.. :) "

Cakep : "Because of these issues and many others, it is therefore useful to reflect on what it is we do with a GIS. Thus GISc is concerned with issues relating to representation, ontology, topology, error, and inconsistency. Uncertainty is introduced in almost every stage of the operation of a GIS, as there are subjective choices to be made. Users of GIS should try to bear in mind the political and social dimensions of using GIS and maps to represent "a truth" to an audience."

Thole : "Waow..Kang can explain it very well... :) "

Cakep : "Hehehe..because i have read it... :). Keep learn and study in our daily life. Geospatial thinking is our problem solving."

c u in our next regards from THOLE and CAKEP...

Source of information and conversation between Thole and Cakep based on definition of Geographic information science (GISc or GISci) from wikipedia ( accesed on 8th Sept, 2009 5:20 AM)

References :
* ini bukan tulisan geospatial, tapi renungan berfikir dan imajinasi geospatial ala thole cakep*


"Don’t be silent, do something and smile for Planet of Earth”
by Aji Putra Perdana
"The Transformer of GIS and Remote Sensing“

Dancing in A Globalized, Dancing with Love and Peace for Our Planet of Earth”
by My Little Sister

Salam Hangat,

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