To Be Honest…

I’m just going to put it out there: I think this article is rather ridiculous. I know that sounds a little harsh but it’s just the way I feel. Who cares if non-empirical methods and facts can’t be put into ‘western’ or ‘European’ GIS applications? Just because the software and field of GIS the way it is exists doesn’t mean that now it is required to view the world in the same way. If indigenous populations feel that their world view is incompatible with the current GIS softwares – then they can go about developing one that does shows the relationships they see in the environment. In my opinion, the fundamentals of GIS are computers and hard facts – it’s zeros and ones – how would you even start to put fluffy non-empirical evidence into software program? It’s just ridiculous that someone is even bringing this up. It even says that “indigenous peoples often use other sources of information about the world in concert with an empirically perceived reality to make their knowledge statements. In other words, indigenous peoples find those evil empirical facts kind of useful. Yeah – that’s right Rundstorm – the Western view on things isn’t so bad now is it? He also makes a point about technological advances and how we must ‘keep up’ with it. I disagree – I find paper maps still extremely useful and use them every day. Books and other ‘old school’ methods of taking down information are also still being used all the time. Now I know I’m coming down on this author a little hard – I get it – he’s just trying to show that we should think about the methods we present and collect data most often isn’t necessarily the only way or the right way (the whole argument about epistemology). It just really angers me that he considers indigenous peoples as the only ones who view the world in a non empirical way and that he presents the ‘western’ view of the world as evil. The stereotyping was just upsetting. Honestly, he could have stated his arguments in a less infuriating way.

Until next time,


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