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Introducing Geographic Information Systems with ArcGIS: A Workbook Approach to Learning GIS, 3rd Edition by Michael D. Kennedy

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Steps in Developing the Database

Once a data product has been defined for the spatial area of interest, a few questions should be asked about the data you are looking for in order to ensure you are finding data which will suit your needs.

1. Determine what types of data are needed to produce the product(s).
2. Determine what characteristics of those datasets (accuracy, timeliness, coverage, and so on) are demanded by the product; set priorities.
3. Make some preliminary studies to determine that the data and characteristics specified will produce the information wanted.
4. Begin a data acquisition effort—search for already collected data that meet your specifications, or begin a subarea data collection effort.
5. Put data acquired into proper form (reformat, or encode it) for inclusion in the GIS database.
6. Check accuracy of each step of the collection process; also check the first form of the data against the form in the GIS.
7. Repeat Steps 4, 5, and 6 for the complete set of data for the database.
8. Employ techniques for monitoring and updating of the database.

We now look at these steps one at a time.

1. Determine what types of data are needed for the information products(s).

This assumes that you have determined the needs of the decision-making apparatus and, further, that you can identify the sort of information which will satisfy those needs.

The most important component in this step is to have people involved who understand (a) the information required (and ...

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