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The vast amount of well information available to the geologist is leading to an increased use of electronic data storage, retrieval, and processing techniques. The use of these techniques requires improved methods of initially recording data and establishing well identity and location.
A major factor in the economics of processing data by computer is the cost of transcribing the basic information into a machinable form. In order to reduce this cost factor an increasing number of oil and gas companies are entering into agreements with service agencies who transcribe the information pertaining to well bores onto punch cards or magnetic tape. The machinable data prepared by any one of these groups are generally referred to as a "well data system." The various "well data systems" which have begun in the past several years may incorporate much of the drilling information from wells in the United States and Canada by the end of this decade.
Proper use of a machinable well data file can reduce the time and/or cost of a particular study. The improper use of such a file, however, can have the opposite effect. The criteria useful in estimating whether a given study can benefit from a data processing approach are the amount of data to be handled, the number of mathematical solutions needed, and the need for quick data retrieval.
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