Full text: Proceedings of the Symposium on Global and Environmental Monitoring (Pt. 1)

intelligence does not exist. At most, some 
features which characterise intelligent beings 
can be listed and on this basis the phenomenon of 
intelligence can be understood. Therefore 
human beings are only able to formulate a 
definition of quasi-intelligence which remains 
an approximation of the ideal of intelligence, 
and in consequence to build quasi-intelligent 
systems. This led to the title of the paper. Based 
on the above arguments the term intelligence in 
this paper will be identified with the term quasi 
intelligence. One of the features which 
characterises a truly intelligent system is its 
ability to collect information about its 
environment. An intelligent system can also 
synthesise the collected data, draw conclusions 
and make decisions. These powers of an 
intelligent system would make it possible to 
transfer some duties of the user to the system. It 
would result in more effective and user-friendly 
operation of the system. 
The general feature of existing software 
packages is their passiveness in the collection of 
information about their environment. A 
computer program is only able to use 
information which an operator correctly inputs 
to it. At best, if the input information is wrongly 
formulated, the program will provide an error 
message. At worst, the program will not detected 
errors in the input and incorrect information 
will be derived, or even incorrect decisions 
made. All data introduced to the system, good or 
bad includes some information. This 
information can be used, for example, in order to 
improve the communication conditions between 
operator and the system. This is a very 
important aspect, because the human operator is 
the bottleneck in the human-system 
configuration. Thus, moving some functions 
from the human to the system should improve the 
effectiveness of the work of the human-system 
configuration. 
The above remarks suggest an idea for 
equipping the system with the capability to 
observe the operator, for drawing conclusions on 
the collected data and for decision making. A 
system with these features can be described as 
"active” with regard to its contact with its 
environment. 
Let us consider how we can improve the 
effectiveness of the interaction between an 
operator and a system. Three elements can be 
noted which determine the effectiveness of the 
information flow between a human and a 
system: * 
* The range and number of operator errors 
in the formulation of queries to the system. 
* The extent of the operator's lack of 
knowledge of the system and commands. 
* The extent to which the repertoire of 
sequences of commands or queries occurs in 
each working session, and therefore reduces 
progress. 
In this paper these aspects will be 
discussed with regards GIS software, together 
with some particulars on the implementation of 
three procedures in an experimental GIS 
software package, which give the system a 
certain level of quasi-intelligence. 
2. AN EXPERIMENTAL GIS. 
In order to perform experiments with an 
implementation of some quasi-intelligent 
features in a GIS software, an experimental GIS 
has been developed. The proposed GIS software 
was created to the satisfy the following 
assumptions: 
(i) The database should be optimized with 
regard to storage and accessibility of 
information. The criteria for the optimization 
would be based on the time needed for the 
completion of a typical request. 
(ii) The communication language between 
GIS software and and operator should be in 
terms of simple statements in English 
language. 
(iii) Every response of the GIS should have a 
graphical form of display for visualization as 
well as tabular or other forms of displays. 
(iv) The GIS should be able to present all 
possible relationships (both explicit and 
implicit) between the primary data stored in the 
database on request. 
(v) The GIS database should be able to store 
and process spatial information in both vector 
and raster form as well as textual data. 
(vi) The GIS should be equipped with quasi 
intelligence. 
The GIS with these features would be 
described as user-oriented. Each of these 
conditions will be disscused below. 
(i) It has been assumed for this study that the 
RDBMS ORACLE currently available on the 
market is optimal with regard to condition 1. 
(ii) The proposed GIS fulfils condition 2 by 
the STRUCTURED QUERY LANGUAGE 
(SQL). (ISO 1987). This language is of a very 
high level, differing little from a natural
	        
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