Geographic information system (GIS) is a system of computer hardware, software, and people that can assemble, store, manipulate, analyze, and display geographic data. Geographic data is any information that has a specific location. For example: roads, buildings, political boundaries, property lines, natural resources, etc.
With GIS it is possible to combine many layers of data from different sources and analyze the relationships between the data layers. The results of the analysis can then be displayed as a map or report to assist in decision making. For more information view the National Geographic Resource Library Encyclopedia.