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Plot ZipCode Boundaries on Map: Part1 - Make sense of U.S. Census Data

The data I'll focus on here is the Census 2000 5-Digit ZIP Code Tabulation Areas (ZCTAs) in ARC/INFO Ungenerate (ASCII) format. Even though these files are in their own "special" format, described here, they are still just plain ASCII and easily converted into CSV files to be imported into a database. Well, you could look at the ARC/INFO Generate (ASCII) Metadata Cartographic Boundary File Format definition and write a parser that then saves in in a CSV format. Or, you could just download and use the one I wrote for this article.


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