Analysis sub-component of GIS software does four important functions:

  • Selection is a rather simple operation, but it is important because all subsequent work is based on the results of the selection process.
  • Manipulation has to do with aggregation, buffering, overlaying and interpolation.
  • Exploration is the first step in discovering any new kind of pattern or cluster in a data Explorative spatial data analysis (ESDA) uses the data in an inductive way to get new insight about spatial patterns and relations - "we let the data speak for themselves”. {Spatial statistics as Moran's I and the G statistics are important tools in explorative spatial data analysis}.
  • Confirmation can be seen as tools for estimation of process models, simulation and forecasting.

Analysis in GIS is different from other statistical analysis in that the attribute data have established links to maps for visual analysis. Any statistic we can think of to describe the data then automatically has geographic properties and as a result can be placed on map for visual processing.