I've just started a new job in Los Angeles and would like to get my new 
company (consulting groundwater geologists) up and running with MI. 
However, I've never worked in the US before and I'm not familiar with the 
types of data available here. I've used digital 1:50,000 topo maps in 
Canada which can be obtained as .dxf files and I was wondering if there is 
anything like that available in the US. I've also seen the USGS scanned 
images of the 7.5' quad topos. How difficult is it to download and convert 
these into MI format? Is there some software that can do it or do I have to 
register each one manually. And what about the DEM's? Ideally I'd like to 
be able to decide if I should try and do this myself or just go out and buy 
packaged data. We'd probably need something like 50 - 100 of the 7.5' quad 
sheets. Any idea what this might cost commercially? I'd also like to get an 
MI file with the townships and ranges for California.

The company also has a CD with a database of water quality data and 
drinking water source locations put out by the Department of Health, but a 
large percentage of the wells have no lat-long record and are therefore 
useless. Is anyone selling a more useable version of this data? The same 
goes for the oil and gas well records that are currently being digitised by 
the Department of Conservation.

Finally, is anyone aware of any MI add-ons designed for groundwater 
geology? I've used Discover and can see how it might be useful but it's 
really meant for mineral exploration.

Many thanks in advance.

Tim Warman MSc
Geologist & GIS Specialist
Manson Warman Assoc.
Los Angeles
(310) 207-0781

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