Tuesday, August 28, 2007

How to: Export a map to a .jpg (image)

For every exercise we do this semester, you will export your map to an image and then upload it to your blog so I can track your work. The following is a short demonstration on how to do this.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Module 2 - Data Models / ArcCatalog / Geodatabases


When using a GIS, we work with abstractions of reality. The spatial data models are simplified representations of the world that suppport map display, querying, editing and analysis in a GIS. Data models are at the foundation of everything with do with a GIS.

  1. Describe how GIS represent the reality.
  2. Explain why coordinates are important in data models.
  3. Describe the two distinct types of data used to define cartographic objects.
  4. List several examples of things that could be represented in thematic layers.
  5. Describe the difference between cartesian coordinate systems and sperical coordinate systems.
  6. Describe the different attribute categories
  7. Describe the vector data model
  8. Describe the raster data model
  9. Describe the spaghetti data model
  10. Describe the advantages of using a topological data model
  11. Describe the relationship between vector features and attributes
  12. List some advantages and disadvantages of the vector and raster data models
  13. Describe Triangulated Irregular Networks
  14. Define object data model
  15. List common formats for spatial data
  16. Describe what ArcCatalog is used for
  17. Utilize ArcCatalog of managing spatial data

Lecture - GIS Fundamentals

  • entities or phenomena
  • spatial feature
  • cartographic object
  • data model
  • coordinates
  • thematic layers
  • cartesian coordinate system
  • orthogonal
  • spherical coordinate system
  • attributes
  • nominal
  • ordinal
  • interval / ratio
  • vector
  • spaghetti data model
  • topological data model
  • topology
  • planar topology
  • raster
  • cells
  • cell dimension
  • continuous
  • discrete
  • triangulated irregular network (TIN)
  • digital elevation model (DEM)
  • object data model
  • data format

Lab - Getting to Know ArcGIS

  • ArcCatalog
  • catalog tree
  • connect to folder
  • file extension
  • geodatabase
  • feature class
  • layer file
  • shapefile

Lab: Getting to Know ArcGIS
  • Chapter 4 - Exploring ArcCatalog
  • Chapter 14 - Building Geodatabases

For next week lecture and class - GIS Fundamentals - Chapter 3 - Geodesy, Projections, and Coordinate Systems




GIS Fundamentals, pp. 64-65 (do not do the coordinate conversion table)

Friday, August 24, 2007

Module 1 - Getting started / Chapter 1 - GIS Fundamentals


Welcome to GIS 111 - Introduction to GIS. This semester we'll be looking a broad range of GIS characteristics, functions, and applications. This class will not go deep into any one topic but rather will touch on many subjects related to the heart of GIS. It's a great technology that can be a lot of fun to utilize so let's get started!


  • Class introductions
  • Syllabus / Course expectations
  • Discussion - Introduction to GIS - using textbooks
  • GIS websites and examples
  • Resources to learn GIS
  • Introduce and demo ArcGIS
  • Create Google Accounts / create blogs
  • Active learning Exercise - i.e. lab


  1. Define GIS
  2. Define GISci
  3. Describe the major components of a GIS
  4. Describe the difference between Geographic Information Systems and Geographic Information Science
  5. Explain why we need GIS
  6. List several applications of GIS
  7. List several commercial GIS software products
  8. Describe ArcMap
  9. Describe ArcCatalog
  10. Open a map document
  11. Navigate the map in ArcMap using the tools toolbar
  12. View properties of a layer in ArcMap
  13. Utilize the measure tool in ArcMap
  14. Generate statistics from a layer in ArcMap


-Lecture - GIS Fundamentals

  • GIS
  • spatial information
  • ubiquitous
  • data entry
  • editing
  • data management
  • analysis
  • output

-Lab - Getting to Know ArcGIS

  • ArcGIS
  • layers
  • features
  • shape
  • size
  • surfaces
  • attributes
  • spatial relationships
  • table of contents


  • GTKArcGIS - Chapter 3 - Exploring ArcMap

** post to you blog - map from page 29 / step 20

** post to your blog - map from page page 38 / step 18


**normally, you will do the assigned reading before the class. For next week, you will need to read what we covered in class today and what we will cover next week.

  • GIS Fundamentals - Chapter 1 - (PowerPoint available)
  • GTKArcGIS - Chapter 1 and Chapter 2
  • GIS Fundamentals - Chapter 2 -Data Models - next weeks topic

Create a blog for this class at http://www.blogger.com/. If you have a Gmail account, you can use it to log in to Blogger. If you don't have a Gmail account, you will have to create an account with Blogger. REMEMBER YOUR USERNAME. REMEMBER YOUR PASSWORD. REMEMBER YOUR BLOG ADDRESS! WRITE THEM ALL DOWN.
  1. Go to http://www.blogger.com
  2. Click on create a new blog
  3. CThe first step will be to reate an account (on blogger) using a valid email address
  4. Pick a title - this can be anything and does not have to be unique (someone else can have the same title). This can be changed later.
  5. Pick a URL (web address) for the blog. This will be http://SomeThingYouChoose.blogspot.com. Where SomethingYouChoose must be unique - i.e. no one else can have the same address.
  6. Pick a template - this can be changed at any time if you don't like the one you pick
  7. Make a post summarizing our first class.
  8. If you want to see some past student blogs ... see the side links on this blog.

GIS Fundamentals - page 23

Chapter 1 - Introduction to GIS discussion