The NPS cultural resource spatial data standards represent a spatial data transfer standard, as defined by the FGDC. Spatial data transfer standards focus on reporting what the data contains. These types of standards do not address the descriptive information about the subject matter represented as points, lines or polygons in GIS data layers.
- Data transfer standards document where the data was created, who created it, how it was created and other similar parameters of the data
- Documenting the individual points, lines and polygons with this information allows others to use the data more effectively and appropriately
- The format of the data transfer standard supports blind transfer of data between different hardware and software platforms, without data loss
- These types of standards do not replace databases already in use or replace the existing organization of spatial data already established
- Spatial data transfer standards provide the structure to allow the exchange of data
The NPS cultural resource spatial data transfer standards only address the spatial representation of cultural resource data, not the descriptive information contained in existing databases.