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Leung, Y.; Shatin, N.t.

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ISBN 10: 3540625186 / ISBN 13: 9783540625186
From Pep Books (Orlando, FL, U.S.A.)

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In the past half century, we have experienced two major waves of methodological development in the study of human behavior in space and time. The fIrst wave was the well known "quantitative revolution" which propelled geography from a mainly descriptive discipline to a scientifIc discipline using formalism such as probability, statistics, and a large-number of mathematical methods for analyzing spatial structures and processes under certainty and uncertainty. The second wave is the recent advancement of geographical information systems which equips geographers with automation in the storage, retrieval, analysis, and display of data. Both developments have significant impacts on geographical studies in general and solutions to real life spatio-temporal problems in particular. They have found applications in urban and regional planning, automated mapping and facilities management, transportation planning and management, as well as environmental planning and management, to name but a few examples. Both developments have one thing in common. They one way or the other use computer to process and analyze data. However, not until recently, there has been very little interaction between the two. Quantitative models have largely been developed independent of the underlying data models and structures representing the spatial phenomena or processes under study. Display of analysis results has been primitive in terms of the utilization of computer graphic technologies. Formal models, in addition to their technical difficulties, have poor capability in communication with users. Geographical information systems, on the other hand, have originally been developed with a slight intention to entertain powerful analytical models.

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