understanding SDSS in the age of Web 2.0

PJ Densham’s discussion of the possibility of effective Spacial decision support systems gives a useful overview of the concepts in question. The article however, is located in the time it was written, and in an age where GIS (at least as a tool) is moving from the domain of professional geographers to anyone with an internet connection, Densham’s arguments may have to be re-evaluated.
It is conceivable that in our current context (although I wish not to be too presumptous due to my lack of knowledge on the subject) GIS and SDSS aren’t really such separate entities as they once were. Those applications which incorporate the principles of GIS (as science, tool and toolmaking) can be used to support spatial decision making. The growth of user generated content on the internet means that a new SDSS maybe able to use this data (which will often have a spatial element) to produce decisions that are more, if i will, democratic. This is in fact exactly what is done in the Rinner article. The distinctions between GIS and (S)DSS noted by Densham are not so clear cut as they may have been at the time of writing.
As such, while Densham provides a useful background to the concepts that structure SDSS, his article must be read descriptively. It gives a springboard to things that are to come, and to things that are already happening, but is dated and must be considered in our current context to be useful.



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