UNIT 19 - GENERATING COMPLEX PRODUCTS

UNIT 19 - GENERATING COMPLEX PRODUCTS

Compiled with assistance from Doug Banting, Ryerson Polytechnical Institute, Toronto

  • A. STEPS IN DEFINING A GIS PRODUCT
  • B. EXAMPLE GIS PRODUCT DEFINITION
  • C. PRACTICAL PROBLEMS
  • D. SITE SUITABILITY
  • REFERENCES
  • EXAM AND DISCUSSION QUESTIONS
  • NOTES

    This unit seeks to demonstrate the problems of defining GIS products in the real world. Issues with regard to the difficulty of defining procedures for complex sets of operations are explored. An exercise following the Question section can be used to get students thinking seriously about many of the issues raised to this point.

    UNIT 19 - GENERATING COMPLEX PRODUCTS

    Compiled with assistance from Doug Banting, Ryerson Polytechnical Institute, Toronto

    A. STEPS IN DEFINING A GIS PRODUCT

    B. EXAMPLE GIS PRODUCT DEFINITION

    Decisions

    Information needed

    Data needed

    Processing steps

    Summary of functions needed

    C. PRACTICAL PROBLEMS

    Management demands

    Data not available

    Data is available, but there are problems

    Data in wrong format

    Complexity of decision rules

    D. SITE SUITABILITY

    Spatial search

    Assigning suitability

    Decision theory

    Sensitivity

    REFERENCES

    Massam, B.H., 1980. Spatial Search, Pergamon, London. Excellent discussion of spatial search and applications of decision theory.

    French, S., 1986. Decision Theory: An Introduction to the Mathematics of Rationality, Halsted, New York. Good source on decision theory.

    EXAM AND DISCUSSION QUESTIONS

    1. How much flexibility is there in the sequence of operations in the recreation accessibility example? What changes could be made to the sequence without affecting the result? Can you devise a diagram or flow chart to show this?

    2. Describe the relevance of decision theory to spatial search using GIS, with examples.

    3. What is the difference between sensitivity in principle and sensitivity in practice in the result of a spatial search?

    4. Describe the process you would follow as a consultant working with a resource management agency to determine the information products required from a GIS, and to plan the development of the GIS database.

    EXERCISE

    The Milk Marketing Board of Dairyland has been developing a network system for the management of the collection and distribution of milk across Dairyland. What is involved is the routing of 425 trucks varying in capacity from 9 000 to 45 000 liters, to collect approximately 2.3 billion liters of milk per year from 9 800 producers. The milk is carried over several thousands of kilometers of roadways to processing plants, within a very confining time period of two days.

    Design a GIS database to include information on the road network, production quantities at farms, processing capacities at dairies, requirements at markets (cities) and amounts shipped and shipping costs from each farm to each processor and from each processor to each market. Define the functions the system will need to (a) produce maps of the producers, processors, markets and shipments, (b) produce tables of quantities produced, processed, marketed and shipped, (c) evaluate changes such as closure of a processor, expansion of a market, change in production levels.

    Write a proposal for such a system to be submitted to the Milk Marketing Board.


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    Last Updated: August 30, 1997.