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Database Files

The basic world database files provided with MicroCAM (COAST.PNT, ISLAND.PNT, LAKE.PNT, COUNTRY.PNT, STATE.PNT and RIVER.PNT) were derived from World Data Bank II created by the Central Intelligence Agency. Each file contains a category of features (i.e., coastlines) for the entire world. The original data were generalized to a level consistent with mapping at scales of 1:3,000,000 or smaller. The state database files (AK.PNT through WY.PNT) were derived from US Census Bureau (USCB) boundary files. The USCB files define each states perimeter boundary and its internal county boundaries. Both sets of database files were converted for microcomputer use and placed in the public domain by:

Fred Pospeschil and Antonio Rivera

Fred Pospeschil (AKA Micro Doc)
2739 42nd St.
Two Rivers, WI 54241-1111

E-mail: fwp@excel.net

The basic world and state database files are provided with MicroCAM. If you are interested in developing your own application using the World Data Bank or Census Bureau data, contact Micro Doc for current prices (very nominal) and availability of all of their mapping databases and geographic utility programs.


World Data Bank II File Format

The original World Data Bank II files are very large due both to the number of points and the lengthy record structure employed. Each point is encoded in an 80 character record. This verbose format is impractical for microcomputer use. The basic database files used by MicroCAM have been reduced in size by generalizing the data and by utilizing a 6 byte binary record for each point. The file format is a file of integer triplets as follows:

 POINT = RECORD
    CODE: INTEGER;
    LAT: INTEGER;
    LON: INTEGER;
 END;

CODE defines two different things depending on whether it is the first point in the line or any subsequent point. The first points CODE has the format AABBB where AA is the feature category in the range 1 to 8 (3 is not used), where:

The BBB is a sequential number of that line within a feature category with a range from 1 to 999. There is no line count data; a line continues until EOF or a new header record is encountered. CODE for each subsequent point contains a detail level from 1 to 5. The LAT and LON values are signed integers that are the respective coordinate in minutes so LAT will be in the range -5400 to 5400 and LON will be in the range -10800 to 10800.

User data files for use with the LINEFILE command must have the same structure as the database files. In a user data file, AA is a user-definable category in the range of 1 to 32 (it must be at least 1). The MicroCAM command to read these files allows you to specify a specific category or all categories. BBB is the sequential number of the line within a category from 1 to 999. This value is not used by the MicroCAM LINEFILE command. CODE for each subsequent point may be a detail level from 1 to 999. You can specify the detail level when plotting the line with LINEFILE. The specified level includes all higher numbered levels (e.g., level 3 means any level >= 3). The LAT and LON values are as described above.


Packed Database File Format

Since the initial release of MicroCAM for DOS, Fred Pospeschil has worked further with the full resolution World Data Bank II to create a viable data set for use on microcomputers. The result is the packed data format. The entire World Data Bank II is available from MicroDoc in this format at modest cost. The World Data Bank II - PC files total about 12 megabytes of data compared to the 122 megabytes of the normal WDBII files. MicroCAM can process these files or any user created data files in the packed format using the PKDFILE command. The resolution of the packed database file format is one second allowing much larger mapping scales than the basic database file format. The following description of the packed format is extracted and adapted from the documentation provided with World Data Bank II - PC from MicroDoc.

The packed file format is a file of short integers, a signed byte value in the range of 127 through +127. The compression algorithm is based on the (enforced) fact that each point in a line differs from the previous point by less than 127 seconds. This fact is the foundation of the compression process. A packed database file is created by sequentially processing and saving each line in the following format:

  1. The rank (0 to 127) for the line is stored in one short integer.
  2. The number of points in the line (0 to 9999) is stored as two short integers. The first two digits (thousands and hundreds place, 0 to 99xx) are stored in the first short integer. The second two digits (tens and units place, 0 to 99) are stored in the next short integer.
  3. The minimum bounding longitude for the line is stored as three short integers:
    1. Degrees: if degrees >= 128 then store as -(degrees - 128)
    2. Minutes
    3. Signed seconds (+E, -W).

  4. The minimum bounding latitude for the line is stored as three short integers:
    1. Signed degrees (+N, -S)
    2. Minutes
    3. Seconds.

  5. Steps 3 & 4 are repeated for the maximum bounding longitude and latitude. This completes the header data for the line, a total of 15 bytes.

  6. Steps 3 & 4 are repeated for the longitude and latitude of the first point in the line.

  7. Each remaining point in the line is stored as two short integers:
    1. Delta longitude in seconds (0-127) from the previous point
    2. Delta latitude in seconds (0-127) from the previous point.


Digital Line Graph Database File Format

The U.S. Geological Survey developed and publishes geographic databases in the digital line graph (DLG) format. Large amounts of data are available at extremely low cost. A CDROM of the entire DLG database used for the 1:2,000,000 scale national atlas is available from the USGS for $32. It may be ordered, toll-free, by calling (800) USAMAPS. The DLG data are supported in several formats, one of which, the "graphic" format (.GRF), is supported by MicroCAM with the DLGFILE command. This simple file format may be used to create user data files for processing by MicroCAM. A comprehensive description of the DLG format is beyond the scope of this manual, but a brief description of the DLG "graphic" format (.GRF) follows.

Each polyline is stored using two 20-byte record types, a line identifier record and multiple latitude-longitude records (one for each coordinate pair):

  1. Line identifier record:
    1. Line identifier
      • Range: 0 to 9999999
      • Integer value, 7 Characters
      • Not used by MicroCAM

    2. Rank
      • Range: 0 to 99
      • Integer value, 2 Characters

    3. Number of coordinate pairs (NCP) in the line
      • Range: 0 to 999999
      • Integer value, 6 Characters

    4. Attribute code
      • Integer value, 5 Characters
      • Not used by MicroCAM

  2. Latitude-longitude record (repeated NCP times):
    1. Latitude
      • Format: DDMMSSH (H = N or S)
      • DD = Integer value, 2 Characters
      • MM = Integer value, 2 Characters
      • SS = Integer value, 2 Characters
      • H = Alpha value, l Character

    2. Longitude
      • Format: DDDMMSSH (H = E or W)
      • DDD = Integer value, 3 Characters
      • MM = Integer value, 2 Characters
      • SS = Integer value, 2 Characters
      • H = Alpha value, l Character

    3. Sequence count
      • Integer value, 5 Characters
      • Not used by MicroCAM

Indexing Digital Line Graph Files

Since the DLG "graphic" format does not contain information about a lines extents, each data file must be serially processed for its complete length. This can take a long time when the data are stored on a CDROM. To improve the performance of MicroCAM when processing DLG "graphic" data, a tool, DLG Indexer, is provided. This tool can be used to create a companion index file for each DLG file to be accessed. Select the Tool menu option and the DLG Indexer. Use the standard file selection dialog to select one or more DLG "graphic" format file to index (e.g., SEC01_RR.GRF). The index file is created in the MicroCAM data directory (as read from the WINCAM.INI file) with the same filename and an .IDX extension (e.g., SEC01_RR.IDX). When the DLGFILE command is used to access a DLG file, MicroCAM checks for the presence of an index file with the same name and, if found, the index file is used to prequalify each line for the current map based on the map boundaries.


Digital Chart of the World (DCW) ASCII File Format

The Defense Mapping Agency created the Digital Chart of the World (DCW) data files from the best available 1:1,000,000 scale maps of the world. The world was divided into 5 by 5 units called tiles based on the latitude and longitude of the lower left corner of each tile. The DMA format was designed to allow maximum flexibility by subsequent users. It is difficult to process DCW files directly. PhD Associates Inc. has reformatted the DCW data as ASCII-format files that fit (in compressed form) on a single CDROM. This CDROM is available at a special educational price through the Microcomputer Specialty Group of the Association of American Geographers (AAG).

Two commands in MicroCAM for Windows allow access to the DCW ASCII-format data files. The DCWFILE command processes the line features in DCW and the DCWTEXT command processes the DCW text labels for features.

Mounting DCW Data

The ASCII data files must first be mounted on your system. The DCW Mounter option under the Tools menu will uncompress the DCW files from the CDROM and place them under the DCW path on your system. Since each 5 by 5 tile of DCW data has files with the same names, each new tile mounted will replace the previous one unless you use the mount in subdirectory option which will create a subdirectory under the DCW path named for the tile mounted (e.g., DCWPATH\40N090W).

DCW Filenames

The major names used by PhD Associates for the DCW ASCII-format files are (the nn represents different detail level files; see the PhD Associates documentation):

Category Line
Features
Point
Features
Text
Labels
Tile outline box BOX.LLP -- --
Cultural landmark CLL00.LLP CLP00.LLT --
Drainage DNLnn.LLP DNPnn.LLT DNT00.LLT
Sup. drainage -- DSPnn.LLT --
Hypsography HYLnnnnn.LLP HYPnn.LLT --
Sup. hypsography HSLnnnnn.LLP HSP00.LLT --
Ocean OFLnn.LLP OFPnn.LLT --
Physiography PHLnn.LLP -- --
Political POLnn.LLP POPnn.LLT POT00.LLT
Populated places PPL00.LLP PPPnn.LLT PPP02.LLT
Roads RDLnn.LLP TSP01.LLT --
Railroads RRLnn.LLP TSP02.LLT --
Transportation TSLnn.LLP -- --
Utility lines UTLnn.LLP -- --
Aeronautical -- AEPnn.LLT --


World Data Bank II Database

These files are automatically accessed by the FEATURE and LINEPT commands. They are manually accessible with the FEATURE command by using all three parameters.

COAST.PNT - Coastlines of the world.
ISLAND.PNT - Islands of the world.
LAKE.PNT - Lakes of the world.
COUNTRY.PNT - International borders.
STATE.PNT - United States state borders.
RIVER.PNT - Rivers of the world.


US Census Bureau Database

These files contain each states border (feature code 4) and county boundaries (feature code 8). The files are accessed with the LINEFILE command. All files have an extension of .PNT.

AK AL AR AZ CA CO CT DC DE FL
GA HI IA ID IL IN KS KY LA MA
MD ME MI MN MO MS MT NC ND NE
NH NJ NM NV NY OH OK OR PA RI
SC SD TN TX UT VA VT WA WI WV
WY


Standard Library Database

These files contain definitions for most countries and territories of the world. The files contain only FEATURE and LINEFILE commands and are designed to be included in a user-written mapping command file using the LIBRARY command. The actual file names exclude the lower case letters listed (e.g., Czechoslovakia is CZECHSLV). All files have an extension of .CAM.

AFGHANistan, AITUTAKI island, ALASKA, ALBANIA, ALGERIA, ANDORRA, ANGOLA, ANTARCTica, ANTIGUA,ARGENTINa, AUSTRALIa, AUSTRIA, BAHAMAS, BAHRAIN, BANGLaDeSH, BARBADOS, BELGIUM, BELIZE, BENIN, BERMUDA, BHUTAN, BOLIVIA, BOTSWANA, BRAZIL, BRITAIN, BuRKINA_Faso , BRUNEI, BULGARIA, BURUNDI, Central_AFRiCan_Republic, CAMBODIA, CAMEROON, CANADA, CHAD, CHILE, CHINA, COLUMBIA, COMOROS, CONGO, COSTA_RIca, CUBA, CYPRUS, CZECHoSLoVakia, DENMARK, DJIBOUTI, DOMinican_REPublic, DOMINICA, East_GERMaNY, Equatorial_GUINEA, ECUADOR, EGYPT, EL_SALVAdor, ETHIOPIA, French_GUIANA, FALKLAND islands, FIJI, FINLAND, FRANCE, Guinea_BISSAU, GABON, GAMBIA, GERMANY, GHANA, GIBRALTaR, GREECE, GREENLaND, GRENADA, GUADELOUpe, GUAM, GUATEMALa, GUINEA, GUYANA, HAITI, HAWAII, HONDURAS, HONGKONG, HUNGARY, ICELAND, INDIA, INDONESIa, IRAN, IRAQ, IRELAND, ISRAEL, ITALY, IVORY_CoasT, JAMAICA, JAPAN, JORDAN, KENYA, KIRIBATI, KUWAIT, LAOS, LEBANON, LESOTHO, LIBERIA, LIBYA, LIECHTENstein, LUXEMBouRG, MADAGASCar, MALAWI, MALAYSIA, MALI, MARTINIQue, MAURITANia, MEXICO, MONACO, MONGOLIA, MONSERRrat, MOROCCO, MOZAMBIQue, MYANMAR, New_CALEDOnia, Northern_IRELaND, North_KOREA, New_ZEALaND, NAMIBIA, NEPAL, NETHeRLaNDs, NICARAGUa, NIGER, NIGERIA, NIUE_ISland, NORWAY, OMAN, Puerto_RICO, PAKISTAN, PANAMA, PAPua_New_GuiNea, PARAGUAY, PERU, PHILIPPines, POLAND, PORTUGAL, QATAR, ROMANIA, RWANDA, South_AFRICA, Saudi_ARABIA, South_KOREA, Sierra_LEONE, San_MARINO, South_Yemen, SENEGAL, SINGAPORe, SOLOMON islands, SOMALIA, SPAIN, SRILANKA, ST_KITTS, ST_LUCIA, ST_VINCEnt, SUDAN, SURINAME, SWAZILaND, SWEDEN, SWITZeRLanD, SYRIA, TAHITI, TAIWAN, TANZANIA, THAILAND, TOGO, TONGA, TRINIDAD, TUNISIA, TURKEY, United Arab Emirates, UGANDA, URUGUAY, USA, USSR, VANUATU, VENEZUELa, VIETNAM, VIRGIN_Islands, West_GERMaNY, Western_SAMOA,
YemenArabRepublic, YEMEN, YUGOSLAVia, ZAIRE, ZAMBIA, ZIMBABWE.


Caribbean Database

CARIB.PNT - This file contains supplemental Caribbean island nations (not included in the ISLAND.PNT database) with the following feature codes (all lines are at detail level 999). The file is accessible with the LINEFILE command.

  1. Antigua
  2. Barbados
  3. Grenada
  4. Montserrat
  5. St. Kitts
  6. St. Lucia
  7. St. Vincent


Commonwealth of Independent States Database

CIS.PNT - This file contains supplemental internal borders for the Commonwealth of Independent States (CIS) with the following feature codes (all lines are at detail level 999). The file is accessible with the LINEFILE command.

  1. Armenia/Azerbaijan SE
  2. Armenia/Georgia
  3. Armenia/Azerbaijan SW
  4. Azerbaijan/Georgia
  5. Azerbaijan/Russia
  6. Belarus/Latvia
  7. Belarus/Lithuania
  8. Belarus/Russia
  9. Belarus/Ukraine
  10. Estonia/Latvia
  11. Estonia/Russia
  12. Georgia/Russia
  13. Kazakhstan/Kirghizstan
  14. Kazakhstan/Russia
  15. Kazakhstan/Turkmenistan
  16. Kazakhstan/Uzbekistan
  17. Kirghizstan/Tajikstan
  18. Kirghizstan/Uzbekistan
  19. Latvia/Lithuania
  20. Latvia/Russia
  21. Lithuania/Russia
  22. Moldava/Ukraine
  23. Russia/Ukraine
  24. Tajikstan/Uzbekistan
  25. Turkmenistan/Uzbekistan


Middle East Database

MIDEAST.PNT - This file contains supplemental international borders for Arabian peninsula and Israel with the following feature codes (all lines are at detail level 999). The file is accessible with the LINEFILE command.

  1. Oman/United Arab Emirates border
  2. Saudi Arabia/Yemen Arab Rep. border
  3. Saudi Arabia/P. D. R. of Yemen border
  4. Saudi Arabia/Oman border (approx.)
  5. Saudi Arabia/United Arab Emirates border (approx.)
  6. Israel/Jordan border (occupied territory)
  7. Israel/Jordan border (1948)


Canadian Province Database

PROVINCE.PNT - This file contains provincial borders for Canada with the following feature codes (all lines are at detail level 999). The file is accessible with the LINEFILE command.

  1. Yukon/Northwest Territories border
  2. Yukon/Northwest Territories southern border
  3. British Columbia/Alberta border
  4. Alberta/Saskatchewan border
  5. Saskatchewan/Manitoba border
  6. Manitoba/Ontario border
  7. Ontario/Quebec border
  8. Quebec/New Brunswick border
  9. New Brunswick/Nova Scotia border
  10. Quebec/Newfoundland border.



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