are numerous definitions of GIS and none are universally agreed. Here are two
- 'a set of processes
executed on geographically referenced data as well as non-spatial data which
aid in the process of decision making'
- 'a system for
capturing, storing, checking, integrating, manipulating, analysing and displaying
data which are spatially referenced to the Earth'
it is possible to define GIS through reference to their specific functions.
For example, a GIS is able to (Davis, 1996):
- Store data
in an efficient manner;
- Manage data
in a common database;
- Retrieve data
for viewing or analysis;
- Convert data
to enable enhanced analysis;
- Model the
real work to identify relationships and patterns;
- Display data
to improve understanding.