The primary source of data for this system was initially expressed on distribution maps of Ed Smith's Atlas. This was converted to electronic form in North Carolina by John Kartesz and the Biota of North America Program using 'DMAP' software developed by Christopher Meacham of the Museum Informatics Project, University of California at Berkeley. Scanned distribution maps generated electronic files that carried the taxon name used in the Atlas and a FIPS code for each Arkansas county marked with either a dot or an 'R'. Files output by DMAP were initially processed at the Texas A&M Center for the Study of Digital Libraries by Erich Schneider to build indexed full-text retrieval (FTR) files with each taxon representing a unique 'document'. The FTR approach, mediated by public-domain Managing Gigabyes software creates a rapid, efficient data flow environment. The mapped visualization system, developed by Erich Schneider involves software components that fall into three classes. The components in one class take a bilevel image of a map and produce intermediate data files that drive the other two components. Components of the second class take these intermediate files and produce maps with the same borders as the bilevel original but with the connected regions shaded in arbitrary ways. Components in the third class allow use of WWW browser programs to trigger actions based on the direct selection of a region from a map. All components of the system are either locally produced Common Gateway Interface programs or public-domain software. Machine-generated selection menu files are produced by the program arkqmake.ipf written by Hugh Wilson. Family names, absent from the initial DMAP file, were initially established by programmed matching of genus name strings of the DMAP file those present in the full BONAP database, with later adjustments to the nomenclature used in the Atlas.
Created on: 03/1/96. Return to the 'about' page.