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3.0 Modelling Perception

Archaeological GIS cannot be regarded as atheoretical (Wheatley 1993); it brings with it certain assumptions, principles, practices and drawbacks which have to be addressed and debated in order to be used properly within modern humanistic approaches to past landscapes. Available toolkits and the inherent structure of strengths and weaknesses in commercially available GIS packages encourage functionalist and deterministic approaches and can subtly guide the analysis undertaken (Gillings and Goodrick 1996, 1.2).

In contrast, my position here is that GIS can incorporate new ways of approaching landscapes, but only when certain implicit, built-in, stances are explicated, theorised, debated and eventually overcome by a creative and theoretically aware engagement with technology. GIS packages should not be seen as a static archaeologist's toolbox but as dynamic platforms that can be creatively enhanced and expanded by uniquely archaeological tools, ideas, concepts and ways of representing knowledge.

I believe that the key points that need to be addressed when thinking about modelling perception within GIS are:

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Last updated: Thur Nov 11 2004