Are SDSS actually important?

Densham gives a good account, albeit very dated (1991) of the basic characteristics of spatial decision support systems. Densham chooses to focus on the importance of these systems in decision making processes, arguing that they are more adaptable to the complex characteristics that must be factored in by decision makers.  He concludes that further development would allow decision makers to solve more complex spatial problems.

As I read through the article, the one recurring thought that kept coming to my mind was how much the field of GIS has evolved since the article was written. Spatial decision support systems have evolved tremendously with the influx of huge amounts of user based geodata. This in turn has led to more complex spatial analysis, with ever changing factors in space and time.One component I found well written was the distinction between GIS and SDSS. Densham highlights the shortcomings of GIS, mainly the lack of Geographical Information Analysis capabilities. He goes on to give a good description of SDSS, albeit one that was much more relevant during the time of writing. The age of the article becomes even more relevant when Densham goes on to the describe some of the problems facing the evolution of SDSS. Modern technology, such large increasing in computing power, have completely evolved SDSS into dynamic models that are affected by a multitude of changing characteristics.

Overall, the article gives great insight into the early days of SDSS. However, modern technology has rendered many of the issues brought up by Dersham rather obsolete.

-Victor Manuel



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