Geographic Information System (G.I.S.) is a new technology, becoming essential for analyzing and graphically transferriing knowledge about the world. G.I.S. is defined as "A powerful set of tools for collecting, storing, retrieving at will, transforming and displaying spatial data from the real world for a particular set of purposes". G.I.S.'s are changing spatial data collection procedures and analytical processes. Advances in computer technology and techniques have made it possible to capabilities. Furthermore, there has been a reduction in costs and an increase in accessibility, so that a larger user community has been developing.
Among the users of G.I.S. are municipalities, public and commercial corporations, planners, 'green' bodies, Government offices, accademic institutes, etc. It has high potential in the Educational System and specially in Environmental Education. In Universities its alredy used for years. In High School level in Israel, it used only in The High School for Environmental Education in Midreshet Sde-Boker.
G.I.S. is used to assist decision makers by indicating various alternatives in development, conservation, planning and modelling the potential outcome of a series of scenarios. They provide planners with a readily accessible source of objective earth science related facts, and an inexpensive, rapid and flexible tool for combning these facts with various products to create decision alternatives. Basic knowledge on indispensable for more retional planning.
Typical G.I.S. applications can be grouped into the following:
- Automatic cartography.
- Cadastral mapping.
- Highway mapping.
- Utility mapping and management.
- Geodesic mapping
- Land use planning information and management.
- Environmental impact studies.
- Natural resources mapping and management.
- Urban and regional planning.