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Geog_Notes - 1 Brittany's Geography Midterm Study Guide...

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Brittany’s Geography Midterm Study Guide Topic1: Scientific Framework Biosphere - the ecosystem comprising the entire earth & the living organisms that inhabit it. Hydrosphere - The waters of the earth's surface as distinguished from those of the lithosphere and the atmosphere. Lithosphere - the crust and upper mantle of the earth Regional Geography - idea that the earth can be studied on the basis of distinct areas that share common characteristics 1) Geography as a Spatial Science - Location, place, spatial distribution, spatial pattern, spatial interaction Location - - Relative Location - where a feature is in relation to something else - Absolute Locatio n- location expressed in terms of a co-ordinate system, address, etc. Spatial Distribution - Location(s) of geographical phenomena on the earth’s surface Spatial Pattern - Arrangement of phenomena in space Spatial Interaction - Relationship between phenomena occurring at different locations in space 2) Geography as Environmental Science - - Ecology - the study of the relationships btwn organisms & the physical environment - Ecosystem - community of interrelated organisms - The Human-Environment Equation - The earth’s resources are finite & so is human population. Human demand for resources cannot exceed Earth’s supply. 3) Geography as a Physical Science - Study of the forms & processes that comprise the earth’s physical (non-human) environment, Models, Systems Pictoral/Graphic Models - 2-diemnsional representations of geographic phenomena Physical Models - 3-D representations of geographic phenomena Conceptual Models - representation of earth phenomena through abstract visualization of relationships 1
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Mathematical Models - representation of earth phenomena quantitatively through equations or statistics Threshold - a condition that causes a system to change suddenly & dramatically Equilibrium - a state of balance in a system Positive Feedback - a change in a system which reinforces the original change Negative Feedback – a change in a system which counteracts the original change Topic 2: Representations of Earth 4 properties of the global grid 1. Lines of latitude are always parallel 2. Lines of latitude are evenly- spaced 3. Meridians of longitude converge at the Poles 4. Meridians & parallels always cross at right angles Map - graphic representation of selected geographic features represented on a plain surface, always have limitations, never completely accurate Conformal Maps - maintains true shape of landmasses, ex.-Mercator Projection Equal-Area Maps - show only area accurately, ex.- Sinusoidal Equal-Area Projection Compromise Maps - show neither area nor shape accurately Small-Scale Maps - 1:250,000+ (the World, continents, large countries, etc.) Large Scale Maps - 1: 25,000 or less (cities, census tracts, neighborhoods, etc.) Medium Scale Maps - 1: 25,000-1:250,000 (states, regions, etc.) Digital Mapping - the use of computers to plot numerical spatial data as a map Digital Mapping: Advantages- Disadvantages - Attractive visually high start-up cost Accomodates larger data set(s) software constraints Easily revised slow?
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