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1. Introduction to GIS

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Hi, my name is Lerato. Welcome to the first topic in our Gentle introduction to GIS tutorial series. In this screencast, we will give you a basic introduction to the concept of GIS ... ... and show you what a GIS application looks like. GIS Stands for ... Geographical Information System. A GIS consists of computer hardware, computer programs (also called software), ... ... and data that has geographical information associated with it. A GIS Application is a software programme that runs on a computer ... ... and lets you view, manipulate and analyse GIS data. Let's take a closer look! You can see that the application has a graphical user interface ... ... designed to be operated using a computer mouse and keyboard. Along the top is the menu bar. When you click on a menu in the menu bar, ... ... you will see a list of actions that you can click on. When you click on an action, it will tell the program to do something ... ... like loading a map layer or saving your work. Below the menu bar is the toolbar. The toolbar is made up of pictures. Each toolbar picture represents an action. The toolbar icons are a quick way to get to actions you use often. The main part of the GIS application is made up of the map view. In the map view you will see the GIS data. Special actions in the toolbar let you: ... ... zoom in ... ... zoom out ... ... and pan the map. Finally, on the left of the application is the legend area. The legend contains a list of layers that are loaded in the map view. The legend allows you to re-order the layers. Using the legend you can also hide and show layers. When layers are loaded in the GIS, we can change the symbology of the layers ... ... to change their appearance according to our needs. For example, we can make this city layer use star symbols ... ... or square symbols. During this tutorial series we will show you the different types of data that can be used ... ... in a GIS Application. We will explain how vector data is created and viewed. Vector data are points, like these cities, ... ... polylines, like these rivers ... ... and polygons, like these municipal boundaries. We will also look at raster data. Raster data are a grid of regularly sized cells. One common kind of raster data are satellite images. Here we can see a satellite image for the Eastern Cape. You will see that it is made up of a grid of cells as we zoom into the image. GIS Data often has non-geographical data associated with it. For example we can open the table associated with these towns, ... ... and see the town names and other related information. In the tutorials that follow we will explore the topics ... ... of vector and raster data in more detail. We will also look at other aspects of GIS ... ... such as spatial analysis and map production. See you next time!

Video Details

Duration: 5 minutes and 49 seconds
Country: South Africa
Language: English
Producer: Chief Directorate: Spatial Planning & Information, Department of Land Affairs, Eastern Cape, South Africa
Views: 1,070
Posted by: giacomo on Mar 30, 2010

Understanding what GIS is and what it can be used for. With a GIS application you can open digital maps on your computer, create new spatial information to add to a map, create printed maps customised to your needs and perform spatial analysis. In this worksheet we explore the basic concepts behind Geographical Information Systems.

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