.. shapefiles are the most widely used type of vector-based geodata file type used Geographic Information Systems GIS. The shapefile structure, comprised of a .shp (geometry), .dbf (dBase-subject matter), ,shx (index file associating shp and dbf records) and .prj (projection), is in the public domain, well documented and used by many mapping GIS tools.
Persistent Need to Process & Restructure dBase Files
Many shapefiles, such as the wide ranging political, statistical and topographic Census Bureau TIGER/Line shapefiles, become available with no subject matter content or limited scope content. There is a persistent need to process the dBase files (.dbf) associated with shapefiles … adding data, computing data, linking data, updating data, etc.
dBase, or dBASE or dbf, files have wide ranging appeal and use well beyond mapping and GIS applications. The simple and transportable structure makes them ideal for any type of textual or statistical data that is of conventional text or numeric form associated with data records with associated ID fields (social security number, member number, customer number, geocode, and many others) — where the need to support queries or develop relational data files structures is great. Compared to Excel, dBase files provide a smaller footprint, can be processed faster with some dBase application software and can support a larger number of records.
There is no fee for the basic version of the Script feature. It can be used with any dBase file. The learning curve is almost nil. Install CVXEGIS and start using the tool.
Script Tool User Interface
Create, manage code interactively; run the script as a batch file.
Top section shows code; lower section shows selected output.
Join me in a Data Analytics Lab session to discuss more details about accessing and using wide-ranging demographic-economic data and data analytics. Learn more about using these data for areas and applications of interest.
About the Author
— Warren Glimpse is former senior Census Bureau statistician responsible for innovative data access and use operations. He is also the former associate director of the U.S. Office of Federal Statistical Policy and Standards for data access and use. He has more than 20 years of experience in the private sector developing data resources and tools for integration and analysis of geographic, demographic, economic and business data. Contact Warren. Join Warren on LinkedIn.