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Over the last fifteen years GIS has become a fully-fledged technology, deployed across a range of application areas. However, although computer advances in performance appear to continue unhindered, data volumes and the growing sophistication of analysis procedures mean that performance will increasingly become a serious concern in GIS. Parallel computing offers a potential solution. However, traditional algorithms may not run effectively in a parallel environment, so utilization of parallel technology is not entirely straightforward. This groundbreaking book examines some of the current strategies facing scientists and engineers at this crucial interface of parallel computing and GIS.; The book begins with an introduction to the concepts, terminology and techniques of parallel processing, with particular reference to GIS. High level programming paradigms and software engineering issues underlying parallel software developments are considered and emphasis is given to designing modular reusable software libraries. The book continues with problems in designing parallel software for GIS applications, potential vector and raster data structures and details the algorithmic design for some major GIS operations. An implementation case study is included, based around a raster generalization problem, which illustrates some of the principles involved. Subsequent chapters review progress in parallel database technology in a GIS environment and the use of parallel techniques in various application areas, dealing with both algorithmic and implementation issues.; "Parallel Processing Algorithms for GIS" should be a useful text for a new generation of GIS professionals whose principal concern is the challenge of embracing major computer performance enhancements via parallel computing. Similarly, it should be an important volume for parallel computing professionals who are increasingly aware that GIS offers a major application domain for their technology.
Table of Contents
Section 1 Concepts and software infrastructure: introduction; the development of hardware for parallel processing; the software environment and standardization initiatives; the design of portable parallel utility libraries. Section 2 Modular design of parallel algorithms: design issues and requirements; a generic vector topological data model; a modular approach to parallel GIS algorithm design; parallel sort/merge techniques for processing vector data; creation of vector topological data structures; raster data management in parallel. Section 3 Design of selected GIS operations: vector-to-raster conversion; raster-to-vector conversion; vector polygon overlay; implementation case studies I - the generalization of raster data; implementation case studies II - raster- vector conversion. Section 4 Related development in parallel processing: parallel database technology - a review; algorithms for parallel terrain modelling and visualization; parallel processing for spatial statistics and spatial analysis; parallel methods for remotely-sensed image analysis.
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