Anyone know how a Geographic Information System works?

What a want to know is the keywork of the system, i want to know how it work in the computational level? That means the Image processing or the data structure or the algorithms or the Mathematicals models??. For example, in the information retrieval system, you can say that the model TF*IDF is a very important... show more What a want to know is the keywork of the system, i want to know how it work in the computational level? That means the Image processing or the data structure or the algorithms or the Mathematicals models??.
For example, in the information retrieval system, you can say that the model TF*IDF is a very important part. In a Data mining application, the Unsupervised learning is something that you must know, and so on.
What a wonder, is how the system past from the satellite image to response the answer of some address??
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