has added yet another hat to his collection — and this one comes
with a familiar logo.
has taken the position of AAPG's first on-site representative in
It's an arrangement that helps
many people in many ways, because with some 20 percent of AAPG's
membership located in the Houston area, having a marketing and membership
representative there is a valuable service, Barnes said.
Marketing is the main focus of
the relatively new, part-time position. Barnes' mission is to service
AAPG's corporate clients in the area and look for new ones.
Barnes said he also handles queries
from colleagues with concerns or questions about developments within
AAPG, either by finding the information requested or directing the
member toward the appropriate person at headquarters for information.
Since April, the genial geologist
has been getting the word out locally about AAPG services and products
and his own role as neighborhood contact.
Working from his home, Barnes
uses in-person, e-mail and telephone contacts to raise awareness
of AAPG offerings for corporate clients, particularly in the area
of digital products.
In this role, Barnes wears a
"vendor's hat — but not in the classic sense," he said, because
AAPG is a non-profit entity whose mission is to spread geologic
Speaking of hats — in addition
to his marketing position, Barnes soldiers on as part of AAPG's
army of volunteers. He is a member of the House of Delegates and
active in planning the logistics of Houston's annual Prospects and
Property Exposition (APPEX), a board member of SIPES and a director
in the Houston Geological Society — all while maintaining his own
"I have to be judicious with
my time," he said.
Spreading the Word
Still, in sharing the vision
of making AAPG "the go-to place for geological data," Barnes said
he tries to keep corporate clients abreast of digital developments
in the association, such as AAPG Datapages and GIS-UDRIL projects.
Datapages, of course, is a massive,
subscription-based library research application available via the
Internet that includes journals, articles and abstracts from AAPG
and other geoscience sources dating from 1917.
The online library continues
to add information as it becomes available, he said.
These data sets are available
to corporate clients, with two types of fees in use:
- A license fee allows companies to copy
data as needed for internal use.
- Annual subscription fees allow continued
access to the data.
Pricing is based on the number
of users, with discounts available to companies that provide other
sponsorship support for AAPG, Barnes said.
The association's Geographic
Information System-Upstream Digital Reference Library (GIS-UDRIL)
lets users organize or explore the massive amounts of available
text and other data in a geographic context, Barnes said.
Besides traditional keyword searching,
the program allows the user to access all articles or other data
that have a geographic reference related to the user's specified
Clicking on a point on a map
of the globe brings up the geographic information of each referenced
article, he said. The user can click on related seismic lines and
other data, he noted.
The database contains some 34
gigabytes of data, such as maps, seismic lines and field histories.
"The program takes the utility
of Datapages to another level — like adding a third dimension to
the two-dimensional articles," Barnes said.
The interactive program allows
the user to take information from maps as layers and superimpose
them on his or her own work, composite and edit adjacent maps, or
apply it in other ways.
AAPG's International Library
is another notable offering, according to Barnes.
Many countries require, as part
of a corporation's contract for a concession, that the company assist
the local population through hiring, training and education. AAPG
can contract with the company to provide the Datapages library to
a specified university in the area for a specified time.
In addition to helping meet the
education requirements, the program gives the sponsoring company
additional exposure to students or other users by allowing the placement
of logos or links.
Another important offering is
interactive online learning, featuring educational modules prepared
in cooperation with the University of Texas and Bureau of Economic
Geology. The modules are available to individual members and corporate
Barnes said the educational modules
and other resources are important as the industry undergoes rapid
changes; rapid access to large amounts of data can help geoscientists
on large corporate projects as well as those who are working to
transfer their skills to new areas, such as hydrology.
"People have to do their homework
and do it quickly," he said.
Barnes said having a local representative
in Houston is a natural extension of AAPG's attempts to serve its
members and clients, and said he hopes the concept is expanded to
other major petroleum-industry cities.