Some years ago, a very good friend of mine, coincidentally also a career seismic interpreter, commented that exploration tends to be most competitive in areas where seismic data quality is poorest but the data are still usable (in the eye of the beholder). He based this statement on having observed that these areas tend to be the most geologically complex and geophysically demanding, hence they harbor the greatest number of alternative interpretations. Some of these interpretations are bound to be more optimistic than others, and so the areas generally have broader investment and risk-taking profiles. The need to reduce risk...

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