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If you want to interact with this data using SQL expressions without loading into a database server (PostgreSQL/PostGIS or SQL Server), try loading the shapefiles into QGIS and use the DB manager plugin. There is a node called "Virtual Layers" > "QGIS Layers" then you will see the shapefiles in your map. You can hit the "SQL Window" button and start writing ...


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You can install PostgreSQL (opensource) and the PostGIS and TIGER extensions to load the TIGER data. This post has a lot of good info that I used to load the census data. Then you can run SQL queries to get at the data. I loaded all US Data into PostgreSQL on a Win 7 (64 bit) with 8 GB ram and a 230 GB hard-drive (with other apps installed).... I am just ...



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