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GIS Vocabulary List

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zofenugo's version from 2015-10-13 05:35

Basic Definitions

Question Answer
VectorA coordinate-based data model that represents geographic features as points, lines, and polygons. Each point feature is represented as a single coordinate pair, while line and polygon features are represented as ordered lists of vertices. Attributes are associated with each vector feature, as opposed to a raster data model, which associates attributes with grid cells.
RasterA spatial data model that defines space as an array of equally sized cells arranged in rows and columns, and composed of single or multiple bands. Each cell contains an attribute value and location coordinates. Unlike a vector structure, which stores coordinates explicitly, raster coordinates are contained in the ordering of the matrix. Groups of cells that share the same value represent the same type of geographic feature.
GridIn cartography, any network of parallel and perpendicular lines superimposed on a map and used for reference. These grids are usually referred to by the map projection or coordinate system they represent, such as universal transverse Mercator grid.
PointA geometric element defined by a pair of x,y coordinates.
LineOn a map, a shape defined by a connected series of unique x,y coordinate pairs. A line may be straight or curved.
PolygonOn a map, a closed shape defined by a connected sequence of x,y coordinate pairs, where the first and last coordinate pair are the same and all other pairs are unique.
Coordinate SystemA reference framework consisting of a set of points, lines, and/or surfaces, and a set of rules, used to define the positions of points in space in either two or three dimensions. The Cartesian coordinate system and the geographic coordinate system used on the earth's surface are common examples of coordinate systems.
Geographic Coordinate SystemA reference system that uses latitude and longitude to define the locations of points on the surface of a sphere or spheroid. A geographic coordinate system definition includes a datum, prime meridian, and angular unit.
Layer11 [data structures] The visual representation of a geographic dataset in any digital map environment. Conceptually, a layer is a slice or stratum of the geographic reality in a particular area, and is more or less equivalent to a legend item on a paper map. On a road map, for example, roads, national parks, political boundaries, and rivers might be considered different layers.
Layer22 [ESRI software] In ArcGIS, a reference to a data source, such as a shapefile, coverage, geodatabase feature class, or raster, that defines how the data should be symbolized on a map. Layers can also define additional properties, such as which features from the data source are included. Layers can be stored in map documents (.mxd) or saved individually as layer files (.lyr). Layers are conceptually similar to themes in ArcView 3.x.
ArcMapIs an application for displaying maps and investigating them, for analyzing maps to answer geographic questions and producing maps that make analysis persuasive.
ArcCatalogIs an application for managing geographic data. You can copy, move. and delete data; search for data; look at data before deciding whether to add it to map; and create new data.
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Map Terms

Question Answer
Qualitative attributes[data structures] Data classified or shown by category, rather than by amount or rank, such as soil by type or animals by species.
Quantitative attributes[data structures] Data grouped or shown by measurements of number or amount, such as population per unit area
Rendering[graphics (computing)] The process of drawing to a display; the conversion of the geometry, coloring, texturing, lighting, and other characteristics of an object into a display image.
Map element[map design] In digital cartography, a distinctly identifiable graphic or object in the map or page layout. For example, a map element can be a title, scale bar, legend, or other map-surround element. The map area itself can be considered a map element; or an object within the map can be referred to as a map element, such as a roads layer or a school symbol.
Map document[ESRI software] In ArcMap, the file that contains one map, its layout, and its associated layers, tables, charts, and reports. Map documents can be printed or embedded in other documents. Map document files have a .mxd extension.
Qualitative attributes[data structures] Data classified or shown by category, rather than by amount or rank, such as soil by type or animals by species.
Quantitative attributes[data structures] Data grouped or shown by measurements of number or amount, such as population per unit area
Rendering[graphics (computing)] The process of drawing to a display; the conversion of the geometry, coloring, texturing, lighting, and other characteristics of an object into a display image.
Map element[map design] In digital cartography, a distinctly identifiable graphic or object in the map or page layout. For example, a map element can be a title, scale bar, legend, or other map-surround element. The map area itself can be considered a map element; or an object within the map can be referred to as a map element, such as a roads layer or a school symbol.
Map document[ESRI software] In ArcMap, the file that contains one map, its layout, and its associated layers, tables, charts, and reports. Map documents can be printed or embedded in other documents. Map document files have a .mxd extension.
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Types of Maps [cartographic]

 

Question Answer
Bathymetric map[cartography] A map representing the topography of a seafloor or lake bed, using contour lines to indicate depth.
Choropleth map[cartography] A thematic map in which areas are distinctly colored or shaded to represent classed values of a particular phenomenon.
Clinometric map[cartography] A map that represents slope with colors or shading.
Dot density map[cartography] A quantitative, thematic map on which dots of the same size are randomly placed in proportion to a numeric attribute associated with an area. Dot density maps convey the intensity of an attribute.
Dot distribution map[cartography] A map that uses dots or other symbols to represent the presence, quantity, or value of a phenomenon or thing in a specific area. In a dot distribution map, the size of the dots is scaled in proportion to the intensity of the variable.
Flow map[cartography] A map that uses line symbols of variable thickness to show the proportion of traffic or flow within a network.
Graduated color map[cartography] A map on which a range of colors indicates a progression of numeric values. For example, increases in population density might be represented by the increased saturation of a single color, or temperature differences by a sequence of colors from blue to red.
Graduated symbol map[cartography] A map with symbols that change in size according to the value of the attribute they represent. For example, denser populations might be represented by larger dots, or larger rivers by thicker lines.
Hypsometric map[cartography] A map showing relief, whether by contours, hachures, shading, or tinting. [hachure [symbology] A short line on a map that indicates the direction and steepness of a slope. Hachures that represent steep slopes are short and close together; hachures that represent gentle slopes are longer, lighter, and farther apart. Contours, shading, and hypsometric tints have largely replaced hachuring on modern maps.]
Index map[cartography] A schematic map used as a reference for a collection of map sheets, outlining the total area covered along with the coverage extent of, and usually a name or reference for, each map sheet.
Kohonen map[cartography] A map that uses a neural network algorithm to classify and illustrate associations in complex datasets, and reveal multidimensional patterns. A similar set of methods produces maps referred to as self-organizing maps (SOMs). Kohonen maps are named for the Finnish engineer Teuvo Kohonen.
Overview map[cartography] A generalized, smaller-scale map that shows the limits of another map's extent along with its surrounding area.
Planimetric map[cartography] A map that displays only the x,y locations of features and represents only horizontal distances.
Topographic map[cartography] A map that represents the vertical and horizontal positions of features, showing relief in some measurable form, such as contour lines, hypsometric tints, and relief shading.
UVMap[cartography] Acronym for Urban Vector Map. A vector-based data product in vector product format (VPF), typically at larger scales ranging from 1:2,000 to 1:25,000. UVMap data is typically collected over densely populated urban areas.
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Other Types of Maps [other than cartographic]

Question Answer
Basemap1[data analysis] A map depicting background reference information such as landforms, roads, landmarks, and political boundaries, onto which other thematic information is placed. A basemap is used for locational reference and often includes a geodetic control network as part of its structure.
Basemap2[data analysis] A map to which GIS data layers are registered and rescaled.
Inset map[map design] A small map set within a larger map. An inset map might show a detailed part of the map at a larger scale, or the extent of the existing map drawn at a smaller scale within the context of a larger area.
Paneled map[map design] A map spliced together from smaller maps of neighboring areas.
Photomap[aerial photography] An aerial photograph or photographs, referenced to a ground control system and overprinted with map symbology.
Reference map[map design] A map designed to show where geographic features are in relation to each other.
Street-based mapping[address matching] A form of digital mapping that links information to geographic locations and displays address locations as point features on a map.
Texture mapping[ESRI software] The application of a texture to a 3D object in ArcScene and ArcGlobe.
Thematic map[map design] A map designed to convey information about a single topic or theme, such as population density or geology.
Turn-by-turn maps[map design] A series of small maps detailing where route segments meet.
VMap[standards] Acronym for Vector Map. A vector-based data product in vector product format (VPF) at several scales divided into groups, referred to as levels. For example, VMap Level 1 includes vector maps at a scale of 1:250,000, and VMap Level 2 includes vector maps at a scale of 1:50,000.
Web map[Internet] In ArcGIS Online, a Web based, interactive map that allows you to display and query the layers on the map. A Web map contains one or more ArcGIS Server map services that are referenced to ArcGIS Online.
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