Topics: Geography, Human geography, Geographic information system Pages: 10 (2914 words) Published: June 24, 2013
From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
"Geographical" redirects here. For the magazine of the Royal Geographical Society, see Geographical (magazine). For other uses, see Geography (disambiguation).

Map of the Earth
Geography (from Greek γεωγραφία, geographia, lit. "earth description"[1]) is the science that studies the lands, the features, the inhabitants, and the phenomena of the Earth.[2] A literal translation would be "to describe or write about the Earth". The first person to use the word "geography" was Eratosthenes (276-194 BC).[3] Four historical traditions in geographical research are the spatial analysis of the natural and the human phenomena (geography as the study of distribution), the area studies (places and regions), the study of the man-land relationship, and the research in the earth sciences.[4] Nonetheless, the modern geography is an all-encompassing discipline that foremost seeks to understand the Earth and all of its human and natural complexities—not merely where objects are, but how they have changed and come to be. Geography has been called "the world discipline" and "the bridge between the human and the physical science". Geography is divided into two main branches: the human geography and the physical geography.[5][6][7] Part of a series on|

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Contents  [hide]  * 1 Introduction * 2 Branches * 2.1 Physical geography * 2.2 Human geography * 2.3 Integrated geography * 2.4 Geomatics * 2.5 Regional geography * 2.6 Related fields * 3 Techniques * 3.1 Cartography * 3.2 Geographic information systems * 3.3 Remote sensing * 3.4 Quantitative methods * 3.5 Qualitative methods * 4 History * 5 Notable geographers * 6 Institutions and societies * 7 Publications * 8 See also * 9 Notes and references * 10 External links| -------------------------------------------------

Traditionally, geographers have been viewed the same way as cartographers and people who study place names and numbers. Although many geographers are trained in toponymy and cartology, this is not their main preoccupation. Geographers study the spatial and the temporal distribution of phenomena, processes, and features as well as the interaction of humans and their environment.[8] Because space and place affect a variety of topics, such as economics, health, climate, plants and animals; geography is highly interdisciplinary. “| ...mere names of places...are not geography...know by heart a whole gazetteer full of them would not, in itself, constitute anyone a geographer. Geography has higher aims than this: it seeks to classify phenomena (alike of the natural and of the political world, in so far as it treats of the latter), to compare, to generalize, to ascend from effects to causes, and, in doing so, to trace out the laws of nature and to mark their influences upon man. This is 'a description of the world'—that is Geography. In a word Geography is a Science—a thing not of mere names but of argument and reason, of cause and effect.[9]| ”|  | — William Hughes, 1863| |

Geography as a discipline can be split broadly into two main subsidiary fields: the human geography and the physical geography. The former largely focuses on the built environment and how humans create, view, manage, and influence space. The latter examines the natural environment, and how organisms, climate, soil, water, and landforms produce and interact.[10] The difference between these approaches led to a third field, the environmental geography, which combines the physical and the human geography, and looks at the interactions between...
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