The advancement of GIS data models to allow the effective utilization of very large heterogeneous geographic databases requires a new approach that incorporates models of human cognition. The ultimate goal is to provide a cooperative human-computer environment for spatial analysis. We describe the pyramid framework as an example of this new approach within the context of some important aspects of how humans conceptually store spatial information. The proposed framework provides the means to create multiple structural interpretations of observed geographic data and the ability to build knowledge hierarchies through the application of data mining and other statistical techniques.
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