So, it's week 2 of GIS4043 and we are off to a great start! I hope everyone is becoming comfortable with the many facets of this course and program.
As we dive into GIS this week, students are introduced to GIS as a science, an art and a system dependent upon us (people) to ask the right questions in order to solve problems. The text provides an example of how GIS can be used to find the perfect location for a home based on predefined criteria. Where would you like to live? What would your criteria be? Consider how you can use GIS - it will make the topics we cover all the more interesting and meaningful.
Think about it: Almost everything we do on a daily basis involves a spatial component. Most people have a GPS enabled phone or device they use daily. When we geo-tweet (location-based post), rate a restaurant or update our (location-based) status on one of the many social sites available today we are adding data to one or more GIS data sources. Who doesn't like to explore the earth with Google Earth? Google Earth is a free and highly used GIS application. Geography and place are both important and natural to people.....who what when where and why are familiar questions we tend to ask and base decisions on (big and small). Our past, present and future are dictated by place (as a component of many) making GIS an integral part of society.
Who uses GIS? How? I like to direct folks to ESRI's Industry page http://www.esri.com/industries.html