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What is GIS?
A Geographic Information System (GIS) integrates computer hardware, software, and data to create digital mapping. This generates layers of information to be displayed on top of one another to create maps or to answer questions about the relationship between map features - things that could not be done otherwise.

One of the core functions any GIS is the ability to produce mapping at different scales for virtually any field of study. This makes it an invaluable tool in providing various types of information in a more user-friendly manner and provides a better exchange of information between the general public and any public or private entity.

As a result, GIS is now applied to many diverse fields in the private and public sectors, ranging from physical to social sciences. Using GIS for basic research may help solve increasingly complex problems. An example of how GIS could offer a better way to understand information would be various bus routes and stops throughout a municipality or county. A regular map or schedule may be able to show or describe where routes and stops may be, but GIS would allow you to pick only the bus line you wish to use, at the time you wish to use it, and the stops you are interested in. In this respect it offers a more customized product and answers specific questions instead of displaying all the information at once.


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1. What is GIS?