Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Looking for GIS data and maps?

Visit the Hawaii Statewide GIS Program website.

What is GIS? "GIS's are computerized mapping and information systems which are capable of combining spatial (mapped) data with associated attribute information to facilitate spatial data analyses for improved decision making."

What can be done with GIS data? "Mapped data (e.g. roads, streams, schools) and their associated attribute information (e.g. road name, stream flow volume, school enrollments) are converted to a computer-compatible form. This enables users to better and more efficiently assemble, store, manipulate and display geographically-referenced information. GIS's allow efficient retrieval and analyses of these data, including the ability to overlay and combine different layers of information to perform functions such as suitability analyses, i.e. the appropriateness of a particular area to support a certain activity or land use."

Interested in learning more? Visit the Hawaii Statewide GIS Program website.

To see how GIS data is being used in a large scale project in Hawaii, check out the Hawaii State-wide Assessment of Forest Conditions, or SWARS website. SWARS is the state of Hawaii's comprehensive assessment of forest conditions, across all land ownerships and is part of a federal initiative to improve resource management and planning.

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