ENVISIONING A GEOLOGIC DATABASE UTOPIA: IS LIFE IN A POST GIS - OR POSTGIS – WORLD ANY BETTER?
Utilizing a flexible and open-source relational database allows users to enter the post GIS world described by Paul Ramsey (2011). A point where multivariate spatial analyses are possible within a spatially-enabled database without the need for a traditional GIS desktop visualization. PostGIS is a spatial extension for the PostgresSQL database that offers a viable solution for many interoperability issues while offering increased performance, flexible database management and the power of complex relational queries using Structure Query Language (SQL). PostGIS can be used on individual computers, accessed from a single intranet-based server and more recently using cloud solutions such as CartoDB and Amazon’s Relational Database Services.
Migrating public datasets from proprietary formats into a more flexible open-access database not only better serves all stakeholders but offers improved performance, more advanced (and faster) queries and multi-version concurrency control (MVCC), which often isn’t available in standard GIS software packages. The availability of ready-to-use out of the box installations will likely facilitate this migration and result in increase use of this incredibly powerful spatial extension.