MFworks offers a wide range of translator modules to import data from a variety of different sources. These allow information to be read from other GIS packages, graphics applications, word processors, or spreadsheets and databases. MFworks is a raster GIS package, therefore all data will converted into a set of pixels or 'rasterized'. This translation will usually be done automatically when a file is imported into MFworks. Users may also choose to manually control the file import and translation process.

A "Translators" menu has been added to the Script window menu bar to construct file import and export script statements.

This facility can be used to develop a script for importing or exporting multiple files with ease.

Each item in the "Translator" menu has a submenu that lists the modifiers for that translator.


File translators are augmented with the freely available ArcView plug-in for MFworks.

File Translators Available

File Import to MFworks

ArcInfo (Ungenerate)
Imports and rasterizes the ARC/Info coverages created with the "ungenerate" command.

ArcView Shapefile
Imports Shapefiles produced by ArcView. The translator reads the spatial information from the Shapefile and the attributes from the dBASE file.

BMP (BitMap)
Imports .BMP files. Windows version only.

BNA (ASCII Boundary Files)
Input from ESRI PC ARC/INFO, Strategic Mapping Atlas GIS, Atlas MapMaker, Atlas Pro, MapInfo Corp. MapInfo and others.

DEM (Digital Elevation Models)
Input from USGS ASCII DEM files and ARC/INFO DEM files.

DXF (Drawing eXchange Format)
Imports DXF files produced by AutoCAD and other drafting based programs. Options are available to select the coordinate ranges and data layers. There is also an option to treat object identifiers as values (eg., elevation information).

GIF (new as of March 1999)
Imports and exports .GIF files produced by a variety of graphics programs. There is no data transported with this graphic file.

MAP II (Map Analysis Package II)
Input from MAP II

MIF (MapInfo Interchange Format)
Input from MapInfo.

MIF/MID (MapInfo Interchange Format)
Imports and rasterizes MapInfo (MIF/MID) files. The translator reads the spatial information from the MIF file and the attribute data from the MID file.

PICT (Picture)
Input from most Macintosh drawing and mapping packages. MacOS version only.

InterChange (Raw Binary)
Input from ESRI ARC/INFO GRID, Landsat, SPOT and any other grid based, interleaved or sequential formats.

SDTS (Digital Elevation Models)
Input from USGS DEM files in SDTS format. New module as of Nov. '98.

SYLK (SYmbolic Link Format)
Input from standard spreadsheet applications.

TEXT (Delimited)
Input from Microsoft Excel, Word, WordPerfect and most other spreadsheet and word processing applications.

Text (X,Y,Z Point File)
Imports text files composed of a list of points. The X and Y coordinates can be stored as Row/Column, Latitude/Longitude, or UTM. Comma or Tab delimiters supported.

TIFF/GeoTIFF (Tagged Image File Format)
Inport and export of either the purely graphic format or with the geo-referenced data. Suitable for both Windows and Macintosh image-based applications. GeoTIFF available with with all current version of MFworks or as an updated module as of Nov. '98.

File Export from MFworks

Freeware raster GIS package from ThinkSpace Inc.

Bitmap graphic format. MacOS version only.

Bitmap graphic format. Windows version only.

Bitmap graphic format. No data is transferred with this image format, but it does produce web and PowerPoint ready graphics of your maps.

Raw Binary
Unformatted data file.

Symbolic Link file for spreadsheets and databases.

Comma or tab demilited text information (X,Y,Z).

Graphic file suitable for word processor and layout use. GeoTIFF available with updated module as of Nov. '98. Export allows either full GeoTIFF specifications (default), or ArcView "single tie point" option.

Available only for the entire layout window contents.

WMF (Windows MetaFile)
Layout component export. Windows version only.

Exports 3D Metafile data with a number of user defined controls. MacOS version only.

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