There are broadly defined symbols that represent measurements or observations collected on the Earth's surface for characterizing various phenomena: social, technical, natural… The symbols in question may be in the form of text, numbers or graphs. They are increasingly in digital format from the collection point, such as remote sensing data from satellite observation of the earth, or scanned in a second time, for example, as in old maps. The data corresponds to raw values, of which the collection methodology is known and validated, but which are not interpreted. The selection, combination or processing of data according to specific objectives transforms them into geographical information, through Geographic Information Systems. Before being used, raw data should be conceptualized in data models to structure, organize, categorize and define.
There are different types of digital geographic data that are organized in the form of computer files in multiple formats.
See also: Files (Format), Data organization, GIS Project
[French: Données géographiques]]