A Portable Geographic Information System (GIS) for Coastal Mapping

by Erich R. Gundlach, Arthur D. Little, Cambridge, United States,
Marshal Kendziorek, Arthur D. Little, Cambridge, United States,
William McKenzie, Arthur D. Little, Cambridge, United States,

Document Type: Proceeding Paper

Part of: Coastal Zone '91


The combined increases in portable computing power and storage with the availability of new software has enabled the development of a truly portable Geographic Information System (GIS) that has widespread application to coastal zone management, including pollution control and resource protection. This GIS utilizes Geo/SQL software which provides a link between AutoCad as the picture window and mapping tool and either R:base or Oracle as the database. AutoCad provides full mapping capabilities with complete scaling with double precision accuracy, color-rendition, and plotting. The integration of the mapping software with an SQL database enables queries to be plotted as on-demand thematic maps. Our system was tested and enhanced during application of two major projects: (1) the mapping of over 23,582 km of coastline in Alaska in terms of shoreline, oceanographic, and climatic characteristics, and (2) application to the Exxon Valdez oil spill for information tracking and map production by the State of Alaska.

Subject Headings: Geographic information systems | Information systems | Mapping | Coastal management | Information management | Computer software | Computing in civil engineering | Databases | Alaska | United States

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