Geographer`s Tools Power Point 1

Unit 1A
Chapter 1
Thinking Globally
 “Geo”-earth
 “graphy”-to write
 Geographers ask “where” things are and “why” they are
 Geography-The study of the distribution and
interaction of physical and human features on the
 Physical Geography-focus
on natural environment.
 The earth’s natural
phenomena, like soil,
plants, climate and
 This is what most think of
when they think
 Human Geography-focus
on people.
 Processes, and locations of
the earth’s human
creations and their
Looking at the earth
 Continents
 County
 State/province/territory
 Islands
 Oceans
The World
The Science of Mapmaking
 Cartographer-A person
who makes maps
 How do you know where
things are without a
Maps and Map Symbols
 Scale
 Compass Rose
 Symbols
 Title
 Key/Legend
 Color
 Maps-a two dimensional or flat scale model of the
earth’s surface
 Globe-scale model of the earth
 Great Circle Route-shortest distance between 2 points
on the earth
Types of Maps
During the course of the year we will look at all types of
maps, here are a few:
 Thematic
 Flow-line
 Chloropleth
 Dot Density
 Proportional
 Symbol thematic
 Reference
 Isoline Thematic
 Cognative or mental maps
Map Projections
 Projections are the
scientific method of
transferring locations on
the Earth’s surface to a
flat map.
 Think of a projection of
making the skin of an
orange lay flat.
Four types of distortions can
1. shape of an area is distorted.
2. distance between two points
may increase or decrease.
3. relative size of different areas
may be altered.
4. Direction from one place to
another can be distorted.
Classes of Maps
 Cylindrical (compromise)-shows true direction but
loses distance.
 Planar-shows true direction and examines the earth
from one point.
 Conic-cone over the earth, loses direction but keeps
distance intact.
 Oval-combination of cylindrical and conic
Contemporary Tools for Mapping
Systems (GIS)
• Information on a location is
stored in layers.
• Layers can be viewed individually
or combined.
Remote Sensing
• Remote sensing satellites scan the
• Google maps
Global Positioning
Systems (GPS)
• Accurately determines the precise
position of something on earth.
• Originally designed for aircraft
and ships, now available for autos.
Get out your notebook
 Put yourself in groups of 3. HURRY! DO THIS
 Analyze your picture:
 What do you see in the picture?
 What do you think is "different" in the picture?
 Does this look like everywhere else in the world?
 What affects the “look” of this place?
 Is the location of this place important?
 If I were trying to get to this place, how I might I travel
Describe Manvel High School using the 5 Themes of
Geography- there should be a characteristic for each
Five Themes
of Geography
 Location
 Human/Environment
 Regions
 Place
 Movement
 How do Geographers know where things are?
Absolute Location: refers to a position on the global grid.
Relative Location: a location as described in relation to
places around it.
Absolute or Mathematical Location
 Mathematical location-location described by
meridians and parallels, otherwise known as latitude
and longitude.
Absolute location is unique for each place on earth.
 The absolute location of the ACC radio tower.
 Latitude: 29-24'02'' N
Longitude: 095-12'14'' W
Latitude and Longitude
 Meridians or longitude
 Parallels or Latitude
 Prime Meridian
 GMT-Greenwich Mean Time
 International Date line
 Equator
 Hemispheres
Latitude and Longitude
Place-Unique location of a
Why is each point on Earth Unique?
Four ways to identify a place on earth by it’s location.
1. Place name
Toponym or name to distinguish them from others.
Some names reflect history—New York
Some reflect the founder-Alvin-Alvin Morgan
Some are reflective-Three Rivers
2. Site- physical character of a place
water resources
3. Situation-location of a place relative to another place.
This characteristic refers to relative location.
People and
Environmental Modification
 Changes to environment to suit people.
 Interconnections between areas
 What connects people and places
 How do people move from one place
To another?
The organization
of the earth’s
surface into
distinct areas that
are viewed as
different from
other areas.
Types of regions
 There are three types of regions:
1. Formal region
2. Functional Region
3. Vernacular or perceptual region
Formal Region
 Other wise known as uniform or homogeneous region.
 Everyone within the region shares in common one or
more distinctive characteristics.
 Creation of a state or province is a formal region
Formal regions
 The North America Wheat Belt is a formal region.
 Persons in the USA who vote Republican or
Democratic .
Functional Region
 Functional or Nodal Regions are organized
around a core, node or focal point.
 Geographers use functional regions to
display information about economic areas.
 Newspaper circulation
 TV Station reception area
 People in our are who follow the Texans.
Functional region
 The core area has distinct characteristics that lessen in
intensity as one travels to the periphery, or the region’s
 Traveling West from Denver
persons will venture to the
periphery of Salt Lake City.
Perceptual or Vernacular Regions
 They are places that people believe to exist as part of
their cultural identity.
 The reflect feelings and images more than any
objective reality.
 Emerging mega regions of the USA
 A force or process that involves the entire world and
results in making something worldwide in scope.
 Human activities are rarely confined to one location.
 Multinational Corporation-located in
more than one country. Can affect the
culture of other nations.
 Distribution-the arrangement of a feature in space
 Density-frequency in which something occurs
Distribution, cont.
 Concentration-the extent of a features spread over
 Are they clustered (close together)?
 Are they dispersed (far apart) ?
 Concentration is not the same as density. You can have
the same density but different concentrations. Think
housing in communities.
Distribution, cont.
 Pattern-the geometric arrangement of objects in space.
 Some are geometric-houses on a street are linear.
 Some are random and irregular
Spatial interaction
 Historically-settlers,
explorers created
interaction between
 Today- Airplanes,
computers, Television,
Distance Decay-the farther
away one group is from
another group, the less
likely they are to interact
with each other.
Electronic communication
Has lessened this concept.
Diffusion of culture and economy
 North America, Western Europe and Japan are the
centers of global culture and economy.

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