Even with much activity over the past decade, including organized efforts on both sides of the Atlantic, the representation of both space and time in digital databases is still problematic and functional space-time systems have not gone beyond the limited prototype stage. Why is this the case? Why did it take twenty years from the first GIS for the for representation and analysis in the temporal, as well as the spatial dimension, to begin? I explore the answers to these questions by giving a historical overview of the development of space-time representation in the geographic information systems and database communities and a review of the most recent research. Within the context of this perspective, I also question what seems to be a spirit of self-accusation in which the lack of functional space-time systems has been discussed in the literature and in meetings of GIS researchers. I close by offering my own interpretation of current research issues on space-time data models and languages.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Information Systems
- Geography, Planning and Development