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GIS4Geomorphology Archive

Archived Pages from in PDF Format was created and edited by Skye W. Cooley. The site was active from 2011-2019. Instructions developed for ArcGIS 10.x and digital elevation raster data (DEM).

Habitat Use vs. Availability

Least Cost Pathway for Carnivores

Quadrangle Index Grid in Google Earth

Valley Height-Width Ratio (Vf)

And several other lessons I may post in the future...

Commentary: A recent conversation between two economists raised an interesting point about academic journals and "information depth". The argument, applied here to Geoscience articles using GIS software to derive results, goes like this: The formal structure and particularly the appearance of depth in most GIS/Geoscience journals does not equal actual depth. Worse yet are the widely-distributed GIS trade publications (ArcUser, ArcNews), which are so surficial that readers should be excused for mistaking them for sales brochures. There are, however, a few reliably good sources out there. The Journal of Geophysical Research (JGR) consistently delivers high quality, long-format research articles on quantitative geomorphology. But the list drops off rapidly after that. For the most part, innovative work is done by nobodys in small corners of the internet. GIS4Geomorphology is was one such place. The value and depth of the information put out by nobodys is easily confirmed by visitor activity logs, metrics that have no connection to the established academy. While publishing articles in journals is still important, I wonder how many reviewers are GIS-savvy enough to catch the myriad subtle data processing choices authors make, but do not mention in their highly-abbreviated methods sections. For example, I once had a geophysics student ask me to help him sort out an issue regarding a raster dataset he had upsampled using two well-known software packages. In one, pixel values corresponded to a certain corner of the cell. In the other, the cell value corresponded to the pixel centroid. Using one program, his data were statistically significant. Using the other, they were not. His work was accepted for publication by reviewers who were none the wiser.

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