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A Distributed Geoprocessing Concept for Enhancing Terrain Analysis for Environmental Modeling

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Abstract:

Geographic Information Systems (GIS) are well suited to support environmental modeling for dealing with space. However, some of the limitations of current GIS are the lack of tools for comprehensive documentation of the models, the inadequate representation of fields, and the deficient methodology for comprehensive management of uncertainty. Using Digital Terrain Modeling and Analysis as an example, this paper proposes an enhanced approach to overcome these drawbacks. It suggests implementing sophisticated functionality for modeling and analysis of fields in special‐purpose modules outside monolithic GIS. These modules include three components: (1) an extensive framework for metainformation that allows a sound assessment of the fitness‐for‐use of digital field representations for environmental modeling applications, (2) an explicit digital representation of the field phenomenon equipped with the appropriate tools for the derivation of data, and (3) the methods to assess the quality of derived data. A standardized interface enables communication between the module and other software components. The presented modular approach combines the functionality of common GIS with highly specialized modeling and analysis tools encapsulating expert knowledge about the represented phenomena.

Document Type: Original Article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-9671.00074

Affiliations: University of Z├╝rich

Publication date: 2001-03-01

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