Citizen's Guide to Spatial Data and NSDI

This informational site is designed to provide ongoing public outreach and assistance for citizens to access information about spatial data and to utilize the vast resources provided through the National Spatial Data Infrastructure (NSDI).

The Future - GIS and MAIN

Consistent, reliable means to share geographic data among all users, within a community and throughout the nation, will result in significant savings for data collection, the enhanced use of the data, and better decision making. The promise of geographic information system (GIS) technology for sharing information about location and solving community problems is tantalizing, but the reality for most people remains out of reach.

Through this Internet link, the Mountain Area Information Network (MAIN) has taken the first step to opening up this technology to the citizens of western North Carolina. Through MAIN's "Citizen"s Guide to Spatial Data - An Introduction to the NSDI", people from all walks of life can begin to explore the geographic data resources that are available. Interactive use of GIS on MAIN is still only a vision, but the reality may not be far off.

The result of collaborative efforts of MAIN, the Center for Geographic Information and Analysis (CGIA) and Resource Data, Inc. (RDI), the Citizen's Guide to Spatial Data and NSDI is an outreach and education project designed to train public librarians, high school and community college teachers, and MAIN technical volunteers, who in turn will provide continuing technical assistance and public outreach to help citizens, students, and local government staff understand the NSDI and use MAIN to access and utilize the N.C. Geographic Data Clearinghouse. To view our schedule of summer workshops, return to the GIS page at

  1. Introdution to Spatial Data
  2. Introduction to NSDI
  3. Accessing Spatial Data: A Tutorial

Back to M@IN GIS

This tutorial was developed as part of a Federal Geographic Data Committee (FGDC), FY 96, Competitive Cooperative Agreements Program (CCAP) grant. Titled: "Citizen Access to the NSDI via the Mountain Area Informa tion Network of Western North Carolina," it represents a collaborative effort between regional, state and federal communities.

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