Once upon a time, map-making lay in the purview of professional cartographers. Geospatial data analysis was only available to trained analysts using specialized tools. Over the past 25 years, we have seen a dramatic transformation in the geospatial industry, as geospatial data has become democratized and widely available.
The first democratization shift marked the move towards digital maps. Maps became instantly available, personalized, broadly accessible — and free. This phase reached its culmination with the advent of street-level imagery and 3D photographic imagery, giving people the ability to truly visualize a location.