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How does GIS and the cloud work together?

October 27, 2021

As the world moves towards paperless transactions and streamlined work environments, more and more businesses are shifting to the cloud. Cloud computing allows companies to access computing services without the need for installing complex infrastructures to support these demands. This technology has become a standard in almost every industry, such as Geographic Information Systems (GIS).

What Is Cloud Computing?

In essence, cloud computing provides businesses with computing solutions such as servers, software, databases, storage, analytics, and networking over the internet or “the cloud.” Because of this technology, organizations can store and process information without installing their own infrastructure or data centers.

Cloud computing provides a wide range of benefits. Organizations will typically only have to pay for the services they use, making it a cost-efficient way of meeting their computing demands. They can also adjust their resources as they scale up or down, making it a flexible technology that can be adapted to every type of business. 

Geospatial Data and the Cloud

The field of GIS has also adopted the cloud relatively recently, and professionals are now making use of cloud-based systems to access various data on the web. They can freely analyze, share, sell, and buy geospatial data over the internet. The cloud has provided them with the ability to streamline operations in real-time.

How GIS Cloud Computing Works

Cloud computing offers a software-as-a-service (SaaS) model, which provides three distinct models in geospatial technology. These are GIS-as-a-Service (GaaS), applications-as-a-service (AaaS), and imagery-as-a-service (IaaS). These working models can be accessed via public, private, or hybrid cloud services.

In public GIS cloud services, the features are freely available for anyone to use. All of the information is likely stored in the same physical infrastructure. In the private cloud, the GIS features are limited to authorized users, and the data from each organization are typically kept in separate hardware. 

The hybrid cloud provides a mix of public and private services, and it has risen in popularity in recent years. It’s best for maintaining critical information for geospatial data analysis while keeping other data public.

The Advantages of Moving GIS to the Cloud

One of the primary advantages of integrating cloud computing to GIS is providing professionals with the capacity to freely model, map, and analyze information over the internet to gain geospatial insights. It also lets them share and trade data with other users, optimizing collaboration.

GIS professionals can also use open data platforms with geospatial data analytics tools integrated within them. By working on the cloud, they can generate and store large amounts of data for big data analysis while ensuring their security. Organizations no longer have to install complex infrastructures to expand their system’s capabilities—they can just upgrade with a few clicks of a button. 

Invest in Cloud GIS Software

With the capabilities of cloud computing and geospatial information systems, it’s no surprise that the two technologies collaborate to create synergies. The cloud has removed significant barriers that have kept GIS from flourishing as much as it does today. Thanks to this technological advancement, GIS professionals can now store, analyze, share, and buy geospatial data efficiently and cost-effectively.

If you’re looking to invest in cloud GIS software in the US, Ellipsis Drive has you covered. We’re dedicated to helping you get the most out of your geospatial information and unlock more of its potential. Take your business to new heights—contact us today!

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