Author(s): Cliffe, Tim
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"Mapped data" doesn't just exist on static pieces-of-paper or on static computer screens...a "GIS" (or "Geographic Information System") transforms the data on a map into a string-of-numbers in a computer file so that multiple layers of maps can become the database for powerful mathematical models. Thus, "GIS" marries "mapped data" to the computer to allow for "geospatial analysis" (e.g., real-time wildfire management; or, insurance company exposure of insured city-infrastructure in the face of predicted Sea Level Rise caused by global warming; or, military targeting of weapons and of resources and of aid in the face of military or natural crises; Amnesty International's use of satellite imagery to monitor the potential eradication of entire villages by governments or rebels in "closed" societies; etc.).