PersonalGeo Basic Design Philosophy
The design philosophy of PersonalGeo revolves around the concept of Intervals, Modifiers and Qualifiers.
But what does this really mean, and what’s the difference?
PersonalGeo is designed around a relational database system.
There are other geological logging tools out there that allow you to add extra fields to your logging forms ad-infinitum, however these tools typically result in the production of “flat-file” structures of database design. This flat-file approach essentially stores and presents the data much like a basic spreadsheet would. If you want to add, for example, percentages of three sulphide minerals for a particular interval, you will need to add three separate mineral percentage columns in your table. If the next logged interval has no sulphide minerals present, then all these columns end up blank and so on – see another example. For detailed logging, your log table can end up with a gazillion columns before long. You know the deal:
Depth_from, Depth_to, Lithology, Colour1, Colour2, Weathering1, Weathering2, Weathering3, Weathering4, Min1, Min1%, Min2, Min2%, Min3, Min3%, Alt1, Alt1Intensity, etc, etc, etc...
The type of flat structure shown above struggles to represent complex data relationships.
But what if the Interval info is stored in one table:
Depth_from, Depth_to, Lithology, etc...
And the Modifiers are stored in a related table:
Colour, Weathering, Mineralisation, Alteration, etc..
And for every Modifier we can have one or more Qualifiers stored in another related table:
Colour Shade, Weathering Intensity, Mineralisation %, Mineralisation Texture, Alteration Intensity, Alteration Texture etc..
This approach, used by PersonalGeo means that new columns are not required every time a property or feature needs to be recorded for an interval. Your data is stored and recalled efficiently, and can be outputted/exported from PersonalGeo in relational files (.csv) and then imported into a relational geological database (including the free MS Access companion database available for download from this site).