If you make business decisions for a small- or medium-sized business, you have many software products to consider buying. Where do you invest capital? Your company needs a software system that will maximize your return on investment. You might have inspected an inventory management system, an online customer ordering system, or an enterprise resource management system. A complex system must collect customer data and organize it to inform your strategic decision-making.
A powerful software has changed the way many organizations, from government agencies to private businesses, conduct business. Contemporary organizations appreciate the advantages of a geographic information system (GIS), which uses data, software, and hardware components to collect information based on geographic location. A business might look at all locations of its ATMs and how often they’re used or which intersections in a metro area are most highly traveled and therefore perfect for building a new gas station. Alternatively, you might want to consider where to place advertisements on digital signs in order to maximize exposure of your company’s marketing messages to potential consumers.
Endless Kinds of Data
A geographic information system has many advantages. It makes it easy to collect information about human activities and countless other kinds of data; the possibilities for data you can collect based on location are endless. For example, your business might want to study the needs of consumers who live in a particular geographic area and decide how to better deploy resources to meet their localized needs. A GIS helps you understand where they live and how often they buy based on their location. If you’re trying to redesign customer delivery routes, collecting geographic information is essential; it’s simple and fast using a GIS.
When you purchase a GIS system or buy a subscription to a GIS service, you get the ability to make decisions based on geographic data on your own. For example, look at data in different ways – organize information visually in various kinds of charts, graphs, and diagrams. Then, you can package information in reports that your suppliers, customers, or employees will understand. The relationships and patterns you find in data will help you make better decisions. Using GIS Mapping software, examine the geographic distribution of a customer attribute on a map or a 3-D chart. Using 3D Modelling, look at distribution maps from different perspectives, even color-coding data to help you understand a trend more easily.
A GIS system lets you be the investigator. Ask questions and then use your GIS Mapping system to assemble the appropriate information. What you find based in your quest can help you solve a problem. You can also take that data and create a simpler form of it to disseminate to other decision-makers in your organization.
Before you choose a provider of geophysical software, determine if it will be powerful enough for your needs. Businesses can even use geophysical software to make data available to customers on their website or social media page. The possibilities are endless!
Geo data is a broad term that is used to describe sets of information that are used to define a geographic location on the surface of the earth. Several different types of data are available. Each set is normally designed for certain geographical information systems (GIS). The data could be very specific or it could be very vague depending on the purpose of the information. The most accurate information is gathered by professionals with surveying equipment and the assistance of satellites. Less specific information is still useful in systems that are more general or less scientific.
Types Of Data
There are several different ways that geo data can be defined. A very common dataset will include the latitude and longitude of a single specific location. This is often accompanied by an elevation in relation to sea level. Another way to define this type of data is geometrically. A vector that defines a location and direction is often used to describe a street. A dataset could also be collected that is relative to a defined space instead of being globally positioned with absolute coordinates. The dataset might use polygons to specific a location. This is done because many objects or structures on the earth occupy more than a single dot. A polygon could be used to describe the boundaries of a park, city block or country. There are currently several different standards for the data although there is no single worldwide format.
Nearly all geo data is accompanied by additional pieces of information known as metadata. The metadata that is included is usually focused on specific properties of a location that are useful for a particular industry or GIS. Each piece of metadata is attached to the coordinates or other location data in the database. This metadata could include the soil type, average wind speeds or average population. It could also include climate data such as the average rainfall or average temperatures. The format and type of metadata that is included will only be useful when it is processed by a GIS that has been designed to incorporate or read that information.
A major issue that must be dealt with when coding geographical locations is accuracy. The accuracy of a position can be affected by several factors. There are natural distortions because of the curvature of the planet. There are precision problems with floating point numbers since a GIS might round unusually long numbers down to an inaccurate figure. Issues with accuracy only become significant when databases are exchanged between different systems that were not specifically designed to handle the format.
The information that is gathered in a geo database has many uses. Scientifically accurate data is often used by engineers performing city planning and other large-scale construction projects. Global positioning systems (GPS) are a form of GIS that is designed to generate real-time maps for navigation. An increasing number of mobile devices and cell phones are including this type of data in order to provide localized services to individuals based on position. Delivery services around the world use geocoding on packages in order to locate destinations accurately. There are even handheld gaming units that use geo databases in order to determine if there are other players within the vicinity.
Spatial databases are designed to store large amounts of data. This data stored in the databases is normally related to other objects. Spatial databases differ from traditional databases because the databases can manipulate geometries and functions such as construction, serialization, predicates, builders, aggregates, accessors, and analysis and measurement. Storing and retrieving data fast and efficiently from these databases is of great concern to people using this technology. Here are some spatial database tips and tricks to help maximize use of these tools.
1. Use Bounding Boxes
Some commands, such as answering questions like, “Is A inside B?” are “computationally expensive.” When this command is performed using polygons, it is not as efficient as when boxes are used. Many complex linestrings and complex polygons are represented by a simple bounding box. Bounding boxes are one of the major benefits of spatial databases.
2. Choose the Best Spatial Databases for the Best Results
Currently, there are three spatial databases on the market that perform better than others. The three most popular and effective databases include: Oracle RDBMS with Spatial, SQL Server 2008 with Spatial, and PostgreSQL with PostGIS. Some experts also recommend relational databases with spatial types, indexes and functions. There are two options from IBM: IBM DB2 with Spatial Extender or IBM Informix with Spatial Blade. Microsoft also has a spatial database that was released in 2008. SQL Server includes spatial indexes, functions and types.
3. Choose a Non-Enterprise Based Option
Oracle’s enterprise-only option reduces the number of deployable users. This makes the spatial database program very expensive. To reduce costs, Oracle Spatial can be split into “Locator” and “Spatial.” The limitations to this program include the inability to run a buffer operator, union operator or intersection operator in Locator. A centroid point cannot be generated in Locator either. The best scenario is to select a non-enterprise based option to increase the number of deployable users and reduce the costs.
4. Choose a Spatial Database Package With These Options
Geo-processing is an important part of spatial databases. Extension packages are available to provide this type of functionality. These extension packages include linear referencing system (LRS) support, spatial analysis and mining functions, GeoRaster support and geocoding support. Topology data model and network data model are also a part of the extension packages. These extension packages improve the functionality of this spatial database package.
5. Choose a Spatial Database With a Multi-Level Grid Scheme
The SQL Server uses a “multilevel grid scheme” instead of R-trees. A novel index method is not required for this spatial database type. Standard b-trees are commonly used for indexing the grid. The only disadvantage to this scenario is the necessity to update and improve the grid levels for data with large and small objects.
Follow These Tips for Better Spatial Database Functionality
By following these tips, there will be greater functionality when using spatial databases. Selecting the best spatial database is often the key to success. Certain spatial databases have greater functionality than others. These tips will ensure the greatest functionality. Review all of the tips and make the proper selection based upon the data gathered.