Replication of the Question-Based Spatial Computing Approach – Experiences and Suggestions for Further Developments

Selina Studer, Barbara Hofer
2019 GI_FORUM - Journal for Geographic Information Science  
Geographic Information Systems (GIS) have developed into complex toolboxes and require analysts to formulate spatial questions according to the requirements of the data formats and tools provided by their specific GIS-application. The recently proposed language for spatial computing aims to provide a question-based and thus more comprehensible approach for spatial analyses that especially supports scientists and experts from other disciplines to conduct spatial analyses in their fields. In this
more » ... eir fields. In this contribution, we apply the question-based spatial computing approach to a case study in the humanitarian field and compare the resulting script to one written using a conventional GIS tool. The comparison of the two versions of the script is based on six criteria covering qualitative and quantitative aspects of the analysis. We also discuss the implementation concept behind the new language. Our results show that the new approach requires fewer computational steps than the conventional script. In addition, the declarative approach allows users to focus on the content of the spatial question, and the query-like character of the language makes it easier to understand for non-GIS specialists. In addition, we share observations on challenges of the further development of the language as an outcome of this study.
doi:10.1553/giscience2019_01_s40 fatcat:b3h56gq52bf3ljszfjv2k5dxqu