The formal specification of spatial objects and spatial relations is at the core of geographic data exchange and interoperability for geographic information systems (GIS). It is necessary that the representation of such objects and relations comes close to how people use them in their everyday lives, i.e., that these specifications are built upon elements of human spatial cognition. Image schemata have been suggested as highly abstract and structured mental patterns to capture spatial and similar physical as well as metaphorical relations between objects in the experiential world. We assume that image-schematic details for large-scale (geographic) space are potentially different from image-schematic details for small-scale (table-top) space. This paper reviews methods for the formal description of spatial relations, integrates them in a categorical view, and applies the methods arrived at to formally specify image schemata for large-scale (LOCATION, PATH, REGION, and BOUNDARY) as well as small-scale (CONTAINER, SURFACE, and LINK) space. These specifications should provide a foundation for further research on formalizing elements of human spatial cognition for interoperability in GIS.
Spatial Cognition and Computation – Springer Journals
Published: Sep 30, 2004
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