In the paper published by Couclelis in 2005, the author presents a problem that attracts lots of research interests in GIS, the rethink about the relationship between the landscape modeling and the planning. Planning is a kind of strategy making processing, whereas modeling is mathematical and scientific process. GIS modeling process takes the previous data as input, and outputs the patterns extracted from past geospatial information. But planning is about the future strategies, we need to take the future into account based on today’s information. The gap between GIS modeling and planning brings numerous troubles in landscape studies, and this gap has been decreased by the development of technologies.
Recently, the advance of technologies has brought great changes in the landscape modeling systems. For example, web 2.0 has provided a new platform for geospatial information exchange, which means users do not only get geospatial information for web 2.0, but they also contribute information for GIS studies. With the increasing number of web 2.0 users, the information collected with web 2.0 gradually plays a pivotal role in decision-making process.
Another important factor that changes GIS modeling in landscape planning is visualization. Visualization technologies, especially 3D visualization in GIS, provide a standard view about the landscape. Compared with previous 2D technologies, 3D provides much detailed view about the landscape information. By viewing the 2D image, users may treat the landscape as flat and use their own information to imagine the true landscape. This may cause difference between people with different knowledge about designing and planning. 3D visualization significantly limits this difference by providing a standard view. With remote sensing technologies and 3D techniques, detailed information that cannot be collected by the naked-eyes can be delineated, as the video demonstrated.