Maps now seen as a vehicle for information. Is a transfer of information, so we have to know what is being communicated. Gis: a convergence of technological needs and traditional disciplines. 60s-70s was a time of change in computers and technology. Used by government for natural resource inventory and management. Canada land inventory maps were digitized from aerial photographs. Methods for encoding spatial data in digital format were introduced. Harvard land for computer graphics and spatial analysis. Thought was that there was no future for computer mapping because of quality and output printing (dot matrix printer, pen plotter) Create software programs from generating thematic maps from census boundary files. Developed software packages: grid (late 60s, polyvrt (early 70s, odyssey (late 70s) Created by jack dangermond in 1969 with ,100. By 2000 has 2,600 employees and million in revenue. One of largest privately owned companies in the u. s.