SO432, Geographical Information Systems

Exam 2, Fall 2008


Definitions    10 @  3        30   ___________

Short answer    3 @ 10        30   ___________

Longer answer   3 @ various   40   ___________

Total                        100   ___________


Authorized reference:

  1. This test will be open book.  Students can use their own copy of the textbook, with any notes they have permanently written in it.  No papers can be attached to the text, and class notes and handouts will not be allowed. Books will not be shared during the exam.
  2. Calculators will not be allowed.  For the calculations, you may set it up and leave the answer in terms of a sum, product, or quotient, or you can make reason simplifications to get a rough idea of the answer.

Read directions carefully.  You have a selection of questions for the first two parts of the exam.  Carefully select which questions you will answer, and only answer the correct number.

Quality of your answers is important.   For full credit you should use correct terminology, and show that you understand the concepts involved.

All work on this exam is individual.  You may not any materials (books, notes, computers), not listed above in the authorized references, and you may not use IM, texting, talking, or any other means to communicate with other individuals.

Comments, but not complete answers.

Definitions:  define 10 of these terms with a concise sentence that clearly shows your understanding of the term:  Each is worth three points.

  1. ETOPO5:

  2. Unregistered image:  10/17 skipped

  3. Generalization:

  4. GUI:

  5. IR:

  6. LIDAR  so far nowhere near complete coverage of even the US, let alone the rest of the world.

  7. Soft-copy  digital photogrammetry

  8. Supervised classification:

  9. TIN:

  10. Temporal resolution:

  11. Topological operations

  12. Join and TLID:  16/17 skipped



Answer 3 of the 4 short answer questions.  Each is worth 10 points.


1.  Why do you think USGS decided to change the spacing of their data from UTM coordinates to geographic (lat/long) coordinates?  Do you agree with their rationale?



2.  There is a move underfoot to have NGA report all elevations as geodetic (HAE, height above the ellipsoid).  Do you consider this a good idea, and what are the alternatives for what we can use a base level for determining elevations?


3.  What is the NLCD, and how was it created?  What does it mean when we say it has a 30 m resolution?



4.  How has GIS changed the traditional craft of cartography?





 Long answer questions.  There are three longer answer questions, worth 40 points, which you must answer..


(3) You found the map on the first page of the exam on the internet, and it will be perfect for a discussion you will have with your plebes tonight.  You would like to use this map as a GIS base map.  What will you have to do to use the image (it is a JPEG, and you have no metadata). 


(3) Would you be able to click on a state and get the number of electoral votes, or find all the states with more than 10 electoral votes?


(3) If you found that the same web site also had the same data as an ESRI shape file, would getting just the SHP file be a better or worse choice?  Why or why not?


 (3) If you found the data in an Excel spreadsheet with the State Name, a FIPS code, and the number of electoral votes, would that be usable to create a map like this?



(3) Which type would each of the three options above be?


JPEG               ____Vector  Raster_ Neither   _

Shape file        ____Vector  Raster_ Neither __

Spreadsheet     ____Vector  Raster_ Neither __



DTED Level 2

DTED Level 0

DTED Level 0

DTED Level 1 or 2

DTED Level 1

DTED Level 1 or 2


(15 Points) You have been tasked to obtain digital map data for an upcoming operation, and got three different DTED files as seen on the previous page.  Your analyst has prepared shaded relief and contour maps of the same area in all three data sets, but you suspect they are not correctly paired in the table on the previous page. 






(10 Points)  Your analyst has just found something called SRTM DTED, and has brought you a map of the same area covered by the other data sets.  What is the SRTM, and how does this data set compare with the others?  When, if ever, would you want to use it?


This is SRTM DTED 2,  Note: