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GIMS Metadata FAQ

A. GIS is a term used by DNR to describe a collection of related technologies used to manage spatial data. These technologies include computer-aided design systems, automated and desktop mapping systems, remote sensing and image analysis systems, and their related database management systems. The goal of the GIS program is to provide natural resource information to the public in a more efficient and effective manner.

A. Metadata is a term that refers to data about data. Data documentation is important in maintaining the value of information. Without this documentation it is difficult to determine what data and information exist, the specific characteristics of the data, how appropriate the data are for a given use, and the availability of data. These issues are addressed by metadata.

A. Most data described in the GIS Metadata system are available for downloading. Simply follow the instructions provided in the Transfer Instructions portion of the metadata report, or call, email or fax your request to the contact person indicated in the report.

Since data distribution is the responsibility of the Division that creates and maintains the digital data, transfer formats and instructions may differ. Most files described in the GIS Metadata are available free, however there may be a charge involved depending on which division you are requesting data from, the transfer medium, special extraction, and conversion services requested. The contact person listed in the metadata report can provide the details for your specific data request. If you cannot find the correct person charged with the dataset you are looking for, feel free to contact the Division GIS Coordinator for assistance.

A. Digital data from ODNR is available in Esri GIS formats. To make use of these data the potential user must have software that can use of these formats. Generally speaking the data will be in Shapefile or file GeoDatabase formats. The metadata report for a data set lists what formats the data is available in.

For additional information on products offered by these companies see their web sites: for Esri If you are using some other mapping or Geographic Information System software, check your software manual. You may be able to use one or more of these formats.

A. No. The Department of Natural Resources has been producing digital geographic data for more than thirty-five years. This data has been created, and is maintained and distributed by several Divisions within DNR depending on the mandate and responsibilities of the Division. The DNR metadata system is an aging system, and many data have not been documented in the system both older and newer data sets. For more information on data sets that may be available from DNR, please visit the web pages of the responsible Division or consult the Department GIS Coordinator.

A. Several State Agencies use, produce and distribute geographic digital data. Though no comprehensive index currently exists, the following links provide a good starting point for locating this type of information.

Ohio Geographically Referenced Information Program (OGRIP)

Ohio Department of Administrative Services, GIS Support Center

Ohio Environmental Protection Agency

Ohio Department of Development

Ohio Department of Transportation

Public Utilities Commission of Ohio