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12 server [IMS]) with the Geography Network. In using ESRI's There are unknown future costs associated with the use Geography Network, one would have access to ArcExplorer of a smaller, private network. Web Services. ArcExplorer is a downloadable application that provides users with additional tools to view information Ultimately, the focus group saw this option as a simple and on the Network, along with some GIS functionality. If one cost-effective way to provide states access to the proposed does not have a web-based mapping service but wants to tools. The issue of cost for developing metadata would be share information through the Network, one could post infor- irrelevant because defining metadata would be part of the mation in a data download section of the Network, set up a development of the other tools. link to a file transfer protocol (FTP) or other mechanism, and sign up with the Network (thereby supplying the Network REVIEW OF RECOMMENDED TOOLS with metadata and other required information). BY NCHRP PANEL The second option would be to develop a smaller network on the same technology. Examples of such smaller net- The results of the focus group meeting were detailed in a works include the Texas Geography Network, the National May 20, 2003, interim report and submitted to the NCHRP Geographic Map Machine, and the Bureau of Land Manage- panel for review. The URS team then met with the panel to ment's Geocommunicator. For this second option, it would discuss the findings presented in the interim report and to be necessary to have a stakeholder to spearhead the develop- develop recommendations as to which of the four tools should ment effort and someone who has to design the ArcExplorer be advanced to full prototype development and testing. The component for this smaller network. This option also requires following is a summary of results of the meeting with the the use of ArcSDE to extract data from each information sup- NCHRP panel. plier. ArcSDE works with Oracle or SQL Server to manage The Historic Significance Attribute Table should be called spatial data. Both ArcSDE and Oracle (or SQL Server) are the "Historic Property Screening Tool" (HPST). The tool complex, expensive software packages. ESRI was interested would be used to screen for National Register eligibility in talking to the NCHRP project team about this second using the evaluation components of a historic context, as option. ESRI could work with the NCHRP team to create the defined in National Register Bulletin 15 and the Secretary of small network for free and then explore distribution opportuni- the Interior's Standards for Historic Preservation Planning. ties. The focus group was concerned, however, that this work The HPST would allow users to select a historic context might have unknown and large costs in the future. and then the property type most appropriate to the resource The focus group asked Mr. Neimond about security issues. being evaluated. The registration criteria for the property He said that if location information were an issue, one could type (based in part on the aspects of integrity) would then be make the data scale dependent, whereby points disappear when used to determine National Register eligibility. a user zooms into an area. Location data can also be scrambled. The common electronic format for historic contexts (Tool 4) Mr. Neimond noted, however, that each entity linking to the should be referred to as the "Electronic Cultural Resource Eval- Network has to provide its own security. uation Library" (ECREL). The common electronic format Pros for this option were as follows: would provide structure to the narrative that is usually included in historic contexts (e.g., containing descriptions of property Scanned historic contexts/reports would be available on types and the registration criteria for the property types). The a website. panel also recommended that at least one historic context No additional project costs would be required to place should be done from scratch using the common electronic for- information on the Network. mat in ECREL as part of the prototype's validation process. The Network would allow the sharing of information ECREL should be a web-based tool that can be picked up and access to geographic data. in Google or other web searches. Also, since some historic contexts are very large, the panel was concerned that the Portable Document Format (PDF) files containing the con- Cons for this option were as follows: texts may be too large to download. URS should evaluate this concern and may break large documents into smaller ones. The Network would force data into a geographic frame- The panel also noted that consultant reports containing good work. resource evaluations might be more important than existing There are big costs (time and resources) for developing historic contexts. metadata. ECREL should include National Register multiple prop- The database would result in loss of identification of erty documents recently scanned by the National Park Ser- information suppliers. vice (NPS) so that these documents can be made searchable There are questions about security in terms of resource (which is currently not the case in the NPS's database). This location data. tool should also include any electronic files already scanned

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13 by SHPOs and DOTs. Paper documents that are to be scanned In summary, the panel recommended that only two final should contain valuable contextual information. tools be advanced to the full prototype development and test- The panel recommended dropping the Geography Network ing phase: the HPST (which combines Tools 1 and 3) and as a tool for this study. There was a consensus among the ECREL (Tool 4). The following chapter details the design panel members that the NPS should be responsible for dis- and testing of these two final tools. tributing this type of information on the Internet. This belief was also the consensus of the Phase 1 survey respondents.