Our nation relies on sound data to make sound decisions (e.g., In an emergency, where are all the roads, homes, businesses, shelters, gas stations, food sources, etc.? What are the evacuation routes?) . Data validity is significant, but the usefulness of data comes through its spatial component, to answers such questions about data as: “where?,” “what?,” “how many?,” “what patterns?,” etc.
The best data reside at a local level (e.g., the county Fire Departments know more about station locations, fleet availability, equipment, etc. than the US Government). Therefore, our national repository of spatial data, the NSDI, is built on a “feed” from the local level to the state level to the national level.
Most states have a State Spatial Data Infrastructure (SSDI) to supply the National Spatial Data Infrastructure (NSDI) with local, regional and state datasets. Logically, Georgia’s SSDI is called the Georgia Spatial Data Infrastructure (GaSDI) and is represented via this online presence: http://www.georgiaspatial.org.
There are several components to The GaSDI (i.e., the GaSDI is an “umbrella” for): the coordination component, the data component and the information component. The coordination component takes the form of the Georgia GIS Coordinating Committee or GISCC. In addition to the GISCC there is policy arm which is the Georgia Geospatial Advisory Council or GGAC. The data component is an online repository of over 30,000 geographic datasets via the Georgia GIS Clearinghouse (http://data.georgiaspatial.org). The information explaining the GaSDI history, activities, geospatial technologies and resources, etc. is this website: http://www.georgiaspatial.org.