Cloud computing, Big Data and crowdsourcing have meant that users of geospatial data are increasingly faced with the challenge of how to organise or visualise vast amounts of data. One way through which the geospatial community is addressing these challenges is through the use of Discrete Global Grid Systems (DGGS).
The concept of a DGGS refers to a tessellation of regions used to partition the Earth’s surface, with each region forming a cell that can contain smaller cells at finer resolutions. Cell regions may vary in shape and size, from irregular shapes based on attributes such as population, to regular shapes of evenly distributed vertices. Examples of shapes used include triangles, squares, hexagons and diamonds. If the grids are made of regular planar polygons, the resolution can be described in terms of the aperture of the DGGS, where the aperture is the ratio of the areas of a planar polygon cell at two consecutive resolutions.
Envitia have recently applied DGGS to applications that include text mining, visualisation and so on. An article on DGGS by Envitia staff has been published in the September/October 2014 issue of Geomatics World magazine, which can be found at the following link:
Dr. Gobe Hobona, Consultancy Team Leader