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Personal computers are assured an increasingly important role in geology. While their cost plummets, communication speed and computation power increase exponentially. As a result, it is now possible to meet at a reasonable cost, geologists' high demands for rapid data access, precise graphic displays, and sophisticated programs. Most important, these powerful miniature computers make possible the professional's "work station" and the "shared resource" concept, ideas that will redefine the geologic exploration industry. Through the personal computer work station, the geologist will share computation power, programs, data, and work results with associates, and draw upon the capabilities of large central systems as needed. These electronic libraries ("information resources") will instantaneously research, retrieve, and deliver most required raw-data files and programs to the geologists' work station on a rental basis. Geoscientists place high demands on computer memory, graphics, and speed, but personal computers and shared resources will meet the task. Technology is at hand to provide historical data for more than 250,000 wells or hundreds of digitally coded, precise images on one small, inexpensive laser disk. Data from historical files can be superimposed on the image of a related log that comes from another file. This technology is available today, and the cost is reasonable. Applying the geologist's innovative ideas is now the major challenge.
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