3D Geovisualisation, Geovisual Analytics and LBS


The process of planning and managing of the entire territory requires a deep understanding of a very large area, of its problems, evolution and resources. Traditionally, this process was carried on with the use of paper based maps and more recently through the use of GIS (Geographical Information Systems) technologies.

The availability of 3D Geobrowsers has introduced a new powerful tool to planners and administrators since it gives the possibility to interactively access vast amount of territorial data. In the last four years, GraphiTech’s vision has rapidly evolved to embrace recent research trends that try to provide, users looking for decision support, with tools capable to visualize very large amount of multidimensional data in an interactive form.

The vision has been shaped along with the concept of “Digital Earth”, first brought forward a decade ago by US Vice President Al Gore during one of his most well-renowned speeches. Quoting an axiom at the basis of Jean Piaget’s genetic epistemology, GraphiTech’s vision pursues the principle that IT systems, within strategic contexts, need to allow users to “move from low to high level consciousness states”. For this reason the specific focus of our research activity has been to promote the convergence of interactive visualization with intelligent complexity reduction, including investigating methodologies and developing IT platforms to support discovery of unexpected patterns with respect to prior knowledge.

The challenge for our research activities was to develop tools capable to ensure access, process, filter and represent large geographical repositories characterized by high dimensionality and variability over time, embedding complex relationships related to the different territorial factors.

The domain of GeoVisual Analytics provides an answer to the aforementioned scenario through the development of techniques and tools capable to identify relevant data or information pattern within a vast information flow made of multidimensional geographical data coming from databases, as well as from traffic, pollution or environmental sensors. GeoVisual Analytics can help identify relevant conditions emerging from:

  • Variation of spatial configurations.
  • Monitoring of geographical data over time.
  • Variation over time of numerical values associated to geographical features.

Furthermore, the convergence among:

  • technologies to access and process GI,
  • localization technologies (e.g. GALILEO),
  • wireless communication infrastructures (Wi-Fi, WiMax, H3G etc.),

creates the condition to develop a wide range of innovative services based on GI and localization also known as LBS - Location Based Services. Development at GraphiTech in the domain of LBS will create relevant market opportunities in domains such as eGovernment, eEnvironment, eEnergy, eTraffic, eDisaster Management, Homeland Security and Environmental Security.

GraphiTech is a member of:

The Open Geospatial Consortium, Inc.® Automated Mapping Facilities Management – Geographic Information Systems Italy Geographical Information Systems International Group