Geo-data projects get better info to USDA

The Agriculture Department and some of its customers are using new data system that provides more accurate geodatabase development and geocoding services for graphic information system (GIS) analysis and reporting.

Tele Atlas North America Inc, a Menlo Park, Calif., company that provides digital map data and location content tied to U.S. road networks, has partnered with DLT Solutions Inc. on the Agriculture project.

DLT Solutions received a five-year blanket purchase agreement from Agriculture last October to license Tele Atlas' data and provide the agency with the geodatabase development and geocoding services. The Herndon, Va., company offers technology products, services and solutions to government agencies and commercial customers.

Tele Data declined to disclose the agreement's amount.

The agreement allows specific Agriculture agencies and selected customers to use the data for their GIS analysis and reporting. The license allows Agriculture to expand the data use to its other groups.

GIS is mainly used by geographers to map, model and analyze large quantities of data in a single database. A geodatabase provides the latitude and longitude of a location or address, and geocoding services allow users to input an address and determine its location on a map.

When a farmer in a rural area, for example, applies for a special loan restricted to farmers meeting certain geographical parameters, the data would allow the Agriculture Department to determine his location to ensure that he qualifies for the loan, according to Tele Atlas.

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