Is there a way to categorize locations by lat-long in MS Access using caparisons to shapefiles?
try google fusion, it will help to load your lat.long and convert it to addresses. Based on the address city/zip code, you can categorize the data based on locations.
MS Access is not able to do spatial operations, at least not in the way those used to using OGR standard spatial databases may be familiar with.
Functions such as ST_Within, ST_Intersects and the dedicated geometry types simply don't exist.
Now, that's not to say that you can't work with co-ordinate values, but you'll have to treat them as normal decimal / float number types, and represent them in the appropriate column type for the operations your trying to perform.
Once you do this, you can work with the value as you would any other standard data type and add / insert and perform mathematical operations on it.
You won't however be able to do geographic comparisons unless you:
A) as the previous response states, export from MS-Access to the shape file you wish to use and use a GIS package.
B) Export your shape data into a more universal format in MS-Access then be prepared to do a huge amount of comparison's. Now this may not be as big a job as you may think if all your shape-file polygons are rectangular, because at most you'll need 4 points for each area, and some simple "If greater than one boundary and less than the other" where statements.
now as I write this, I can think of 2 alternatives, but you'll need to be prepared to put a bit of research and work into them, there not instant solutions.
Idea 1 Use 'Geo Kettle' - geo-kettle is a geographic aware ETL & Data manipulation tool. You write scripts using the drag and drop interface, then link these scripts together to process your data.
The application can load MS-Access files and shape files, then run processing on them as though it was one file, outputting the result in many different ways.
Idea 2 Using one of the many open source SDK's to read your shape file, and then either .NET or (if non windows - mono) to open the MS-Access file using standard data handling, you should be able to quickly put together a small application that can easily perform the operations you need to.
In the absence of any further information, try converting you MS Access points to a point shapefile and the do a spatial join.