GeoTIFF files are graphical data files which have geographic/cartographic data embedded as tags.
The geographic data represents the position (location and geometry) of the image.
The TIFF file structure embeds the metadata and the image data, all encoded into one file.
GeoTIFF uses a public tag structure to make it platform independent and interoperable between any GeoTIFF-aware systems.
The GeoTIFF format was introduced by Dr. Niles Ritter at NASA-JPL Jet Propulsion Laboratory. The file format is an open, public domain standard.