Geospatial Data

James Fee, in his Spatially Adjusted blog, recently remarked about ESRI Shape Files, “So antiquated, so limiting, so dangerous….” True. True. Yet I could also add, “so everywhere.” Love them or hate them, Shapefiles are everywhere. Therefore, they are probably here to stay, at least until we all retire to some tropical paradise.

This question is another one of those, “if I got a stamp for every time I heard” stories. From the Census Bureau, you cannot get ZIP Codes, at any price, free or otherwise. Instead, the Bureau makes available a geographic product called ZIP Code Tabulation Areas,” or ZCTATM for short.