“Geologic maps are valuable in many ways. They show the areas within which coal, iron, and other useful minerals occur, the limits of the artesian basins, the course of metalliferous veins, and many other things needful to the development of a region.”
These words were written by the USGS more than 100 years ago, in 1904 – and they still stand today. When they were established in 1879, the main purpose of the Survey was to map the geology of the US. Nowadays, especially in the US, all the main geological features are at least somewhat known and studied, but that doesn’t mean things can’t get any better.
Of course piles of maps are a rare sight and, today, online maps are the way to go – and this is the way USGS went as well; the main feature the new online facelift brings is MapView – a visually compelling new interface that uses the latest technology to seamlessly portray the nation’s geologic maps published by the USGS as well as other sources.
MapView systematically mapped US regions, and it’s really worth a look, so check it out here, if you want to learn about your local geology, or just learn something new, even without any background whatsoever.
Andrei's background is in geophysics, and he's been fascinated by it ever since he was a child. Feeling that there is a gap between scientists and the general audience, he started ZME Science -- and the results are what you see today.