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What is Geographic Information System Mapping (GIS)?

Have you ever heard of geographic information system (GIS) mapping? It’s an important tool for collecting, analyzing, and visualizing data about the physical world. GIS mapping is used to study everything from climate change to population growth and much more. But what is GIS mapping exactly? How does it differ from other forms of data collection and analysis? And why is it so important in today’s digital era? Read on to learn more about this powerful technology and its various applications.

What is Geographic Information System Mapping (GIS)?

A geographic information system (GIS) is a computer system that captures, stores, analyzes, manages, and presents data that are linked to location.

A GIS can visualize, question, analyze, and interpret data to reveal relationships, patterns, and trends. It is used as a tool by governments, businesses, and individuals to make better decisions about our world.

GIS technology integrates common database operations such as query and statistical analysis with the unique visualization and geographic analysis benefits offered by maps. These capabilities distinguish GIS from other information systems and make it valuable for addressing complex issues. For example, a GIS could be used to track the spread of an invasive plant species in order to control its growth.

There are many software programs available that allow users to create maps and perform GIS analysis. Some of these programs are free or have free trial versions, while others must be purchased. Some popular GIS software programs include ArcGIS by Esri, QGIS, MapInfo Professional, and Google Earth Pro.

The Different Types of GIS Mapping

There are many different types of GIS mapping. The most common type is street mapping, which shows all the streets in a city or town, as well as their names and addresses. Another popular type is land parcel mapping, which shows the boundaries of parcels of land. There are also maps that show elevation, weather patterns, and even the stars in the night sky.

What are the Uses for GIS Mapping?

There are a variety of uses for GIS mapping, including planning for urban growth, monitoring environmental changes, and managing natural resources.

GIS mapping can be used to plan for urban growth by helping to identify potential areas for development and expansion. It can also be used to monitor environmental changes, such as the spread of invasive species or the effects of climate change. Additionally, GIS mapping can be used to manage natural resources, such as forests, water supplies, and minerals.

How to get started with GIS Mapping

If you're thinking about getting started with GIS mapping, there are a few things you should know. First, GIS mapping is a powerful tool that can help you make better decisions about where to live, work, and play. But like any tool, it takes some time and effort to learn how to use it effectively. Here are a few tips to get you started:

1. Familiarize yourself with the basics of GIS. Geographic Information Systems (GIS) allow users to create interactive maps that can be used to visualize, analyze, and understand data. If you're new to GIS, start by reading some introductory tutorials or taking a class on the subject.

2. Get your hands on some data. Once you've learned the basics of GIS, you'll need some data to work with. There are many sources of free GIS data online, including the US Census Bureau and the National Weather Service.

3. Start experimenting with mapping software. There are many different software programs available for creating GIS maps. Some are free, while others must be purchased. Try out a few different options to see which one best meets your needs.

4. Seek out community resources. In addition to online resources, there are often local organizations that can help you get started with GIS mapping. Attend meetups or workshops, or join an online forum or mailing list dedicated to GIS users in your area

Select your Local GIS Below

We have compiled a list of all of the East Idaho GIS systems for your convenience. Click on any of the links below to start using the GIS.


Bingham County GIS

Bonneville County GIS

Fremont County GIS

Jefferson County GIS

Madison County GIS

Teton County GIS