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Where & When

GIS Day was held at the UK Student Center on Thursday, November 17, 2011 from 9:00am - 4:30pm.

What is GIS?

A Geographic Information System (GIS) is a system for creating, storing, analyzing and managing spatial data and associated attributes. In the strictest sense, it is a computer system capable of integrating, storing, editing, analyzing, sharing, and displaying geographically-referenced information. In a more generic sense, GIS is a tool that allows users to create interactive queries (user created searches), analyze the spatial information, and edit data. Geographic Information Science is the science underlying the applications and systems, taught as a degree programme by several universities. (Source: Wikipedia, full reference here)

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"The application of GIS is limited only by
the imagination of those who use it"

Jack Dangermond
Who at UK can use GIS?
Everyone Can!
Some of your GIS software choices are listed below:

The Kentucky Division of Geographic Information and the Kentucky Council on Postsecondary Education (CPE) are part of a statewide ESRI site license. In exchange for an annual fee to ESRI, colleges and universities have unlimited rights to use the majority of ESRI software products. The ESRI software can be used for research and instruction by faculty, registered students, and administrative staff. (Source: ESRI/CPE Site License Here)

University of Kentucky's software contract with Autodesk includes GIS software. (Autodesk's GIS product information here)

Google offers GIS software. (Google Earth information here)

Microsoft has GIS. (Virtual Earth information here or MapPoint Information here)
5 points of a GIS
People, Hardware, Software, Data and Methods (PDF 106KB)
GIS Means...
Nine Examples of what GIS Means
1. Never seeing the world without a rain forest (PDF)
2. Safer sailing on the deep blue sea (PDF)
3. Never stopping to ask for directions (PDF)
4. Never wondering what happened to the fish (PDF)
5. Keeping the planes fl ying on time (PDF)
6. Never feeling unprepared for the storm (PDF)
7. Building safer communities (PDF)
8. Saving the forest from fire (PDF)
9. Providing a complete learning experience (PDF)
Geography Matters
Learn how GIS affects your everyday life in this entertaining and informative Shockwave Flash animation movie of 14 vignettes showing how GIS affects your life, from alarm clock in the morning to dinner at night, in ways you never imagined! Here
Then what is GPS?
The Global Positioning System, usually called GPS, is the only fully-functional satellite navigation system. A constellation of more than two dozen GPS satellites broadcasts precise timing signals by radio to GPS receivers, allowing them to accurately determine their location (longitude, latitude, and altitude) in any weather, day or night, anywhere on Earth. (Source: Wikipedia, full reference here)

So, GPS tells us where something is (Longitude, latitude, and altitude) and GIS is the system that can store information about what it is and how it relates to other things around it.
What is remote Sensing?
Remotely-sensed imagery from aircraft and satellites is a source for raster GIS data.

So, "in the broadest sense, remote sensing is the measurement or acquisition of information of an object or phenomenon, by a recording device that is not in physical or intimate contact with the object. In practice, remote sensing is the utilization at a distance (as from aircraft, spacecraft, satellite, or ship) of any device for gathering information about the environment. Thus an aircraft taking photographs, Earth observation and Weather satellites, monitoring of a fetus in the womb via ultrasound, and space probes are all examples of remote sensing." (Source: Wikipedia, full reference here)
GIS and SAP?
The ESRI GIS software that the Commonwealth of KY has and that UK is using is a certified partner with SAP.

ESRI's SAP Certification Status information here
  • SAP Partner - Software - with Development Cooperation
  • SAP Partner - Software - with Certified Integration
  • Independent Software Vendor with Certified Integration
  • Independent Software Vendor with Certified Integration

  • Qualification:
    Certified for SAP NetWeaver
    Powered by SAP NetWeaver

ESRI offers GIS interfaces to SAP solutions, allowing users to turn rows and columns of tabular data into maps for spatially visualizing and analyzing data. GIS empowers SAP users with tools for making better decisions and maxamizing the return on their information investment.

ESRI's GIS interfaces give SAP users the ability to integrate data stored in various databases into a standard, seamless environment that boosts productivity, provides cost savings, and streamlines work flows.

With component mapping technology that can be integrated into the SAP graphical user interface (GUI) and off-the-shelf software packages that have specific connections to R/3, ESRI is poised to help businesses meet the challenges they face today and will face in the competitive future. ESRI's enhanced data visualization and analysis tools allow you to unlock the hidden value in their existing databases and see their data in a whole new way—geographically.

Why use GIS?
GIS technology can organize, analyze and visually represent spatially referenced information. GIS functions by storing information in a collection of thematic layers that are linked together by geography (latitude, longitude, address, postal code, road names etc.). GIS will allow you to perform geographic queries and analysis, improve organizational integration, model and create maps, and make better decisions and solutions.

Why integrate ESRI and SAP software?
The growing use of GIS is seen in virtually every industry from utilities and retail stores to banks and insurance companies to the public sector. Information that was limited to spreadsheets and databases is unleashed in a new, exciting way through spatial analysis and visualization in a GIS. This allows decision makers to see and explore patterns and trends that were previously invisible—and that is adding to their bottom line.

How to integrate ESRI and SAP software?
There are a number of integration options and choosing between these can be a formidable task. For further information on the options go here.

Integration includes: SAP ERP, SAP BW and SAP MAM
(Source: ESRI and SAP here)
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