Searching for and evaluating data from major oil and gas industry data vendors has improved with a new Web-enabled tool that overlays information about data on the industry standard Tobin base map.

Tobin International Ltd. recently launched the Tobin Vendor Data Index (VDI)—an easy-to-use, spatially enabled data search tool that puts all available vendor data at a user’s fingertips. At its annual conference, Tobin formally announced a partnership with many other industry-leading data vendors to provide streamlined data research capabilities through the VDI feature of Tobin WebViewer. The partnership involves A2D Technologies, IHS Energy, Seismic Exchange Inc., Seitel Data, TGS-NOPEC Geophysical Company and Tobin International. All partners have agreed to provide access to information about seismic, well log, production and map data across the entire U.S. Some partners are providing information on data in other parts of the world. In the future, Tobin will continue to expand partnerships for VDI to include more data vendors based on customer requests.

Many data users have been over-burdened with finding and researching information about data that is proprietary, licensed or available from a variety of sources. In order to compare available data with what they already had, landmen, geologists, geophysicists and engineers had to search dozens of Web sites, open multiple in-house applications and browse disparate databases. This time-consuming process caused data users to give up their search or purchase data they already owned, resulting in lost opportunities, inefficient workflow and wasted money. VDI provides a single, Web-based, spatially-enabled data viewing tool with all partner vendor data indexed for display on the industry’s standard base map, Tobin SuperBase. For example, rather than estimating the location of data by “sticks on a cartoon map”, customers can see exactly where a seismic line is down to the shot point level. Each line can be selected to view critical technical information related to a specific seismic line.

The Vendor Data Index enables users to search a variety of data, then overlay both proprietary and vendor data for comparison to make the best data selection for a project. Because it is deployed over the Web, it is a very cost-effective solution. Jim McNeil, Tobin Executive Vice President, Marketing and Product Management says “if one user saves only one hour of research time a month with the Tobin Vendor Data Index, you have more than paid for the service.”

The Tobin Vendor Data Index can be deployed in two ways. Any user interested in browsing data available from the VDI partners can access the information with their Internet browser at Companies seeking access to vendor data as well as indexed proprietary data viewed on the industry standard base map can implement VDI with Tobin WebViewer within their intranet.

Data vendors have committed to providing their services to the exploration and production industry through the VDI feature of Tobin WebViewer because it is an independent and data neutral application that can integrate with most systems. Because it is a part of the Tobin InSight system of geo-business information products, Tobin WebViewer and VDI are scalable, extensible and compatible with existing client applications.