Using arcgisscripting's "9.3" switch

This blog post was written by Ghislain Prince, Product Engineer on the Geoprocessing Team in Redlands.

Hi Everybody!

We learned in the Advanced Python Scripting Technical Workshops at UC that many of you who use ArcGIS 9.3 do not yet use the changes we made to the geoprocessor.  We just wanted you guys to be aware of this option when writing your Python scripts at 9.3.  The 9.3 switch option is specified when the geoprocessor is created; in code it looks like this

import arcgisscripting

gp = arcgisscripting.create(9.3)

Existing (pre-9.3) scripts will obviously not have this option as it didn’t exist before the 9.3 release. We’re sure you’ve already noticed that they continue to work unchanged.  To get the 9.3 geoprocessor behavior, it is not enough to simply change gp = arcgisscripting.create() to gp = arcgisscripting.create(9.3)  -  that does not work, because your code needs to be  updated elsewhere in your script to accommodate the changed behavior.

The main goal for this switch is that when you create new scripts in ArcGIS  9.3, you will use the “9.3” geoprocessor and get a much nicer coding experience.  This “nicer” experience is achieved because the geoprocessor uses more of Python’s native structures as inputs and outputs. 

It’s obvious that the improvements to the geoprocessor make it easier for you to write code and resulting code is easier to read and maintain.  Of course the changes are not limited to the List functions; here’s the complete list of differences and a comparison with several code examples.

Posted in Analysis & Geoprocessing | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

How to use the SDS Mapper Template

The newest addition to the Land Records Code Gallery was generously provided by Smart Data Strategies, Inc. It is a configuration of their Mapper Simple Tools Menu that works with ArcGIS Desktop. The following instructions provided by SDS will get you familiar with the functionality provided.

Smart Data Strategies Mapper Simple Tools Toolbar  SDS Toolbar

ToolbarThis four tab toolbar is designed to walk the user through a parcel change by clicking the tabs in order. The first tab is the Shape Tab. This tab gives you all of the necessary tools to manipulate the shape of lines, polygons, and points. Once the lines and polygons have been created, they must be validated with topology. The Validate Tab gives you the necessary tools to not only run the topology, but fix topology errors as well. When the data has been validated, it’s time to make any attribute changes that are required. The Attribute Tab gives you the ability to calculate acreage on a parcel as well as incrementing polygon attributes. The last tab is the Anno Tab. As you would expect, this tab gives you several options for placing annotation. You will also notice that there are buttons at the top and bottom of the toolbar that are static. The top buttons will allow you to start, save, and stop edits respectively. The bottom buttons allow you to finish a sketch, undo the last action, or open the snapping environment.

Shape Tab

When you initially open the Mapper Simple Tools, the default target layer of Parcel Boundaries and the default edit task of Create 2-Point Line Feature are set. The user can change the target layer and edit task at any time.

Under the edit task dropdown, there are twelve sketch tools. These tools are the same as the sketch tools on the ESRI editor toolbar, with the addition of the Restart Sketch Buttonrestart sketch and the Cul de Sac Tool cul de sac tool. Using the Restart Sketch tool, a user can simply restart a sketch at any time and begin a new sketch from the last point that was used. The Cul De Sac tool allows the user to create a cul de sac with defined measurements. To make these tools active a sketch line must be in process.




Validate Tab

Once you’ve made edits to a feature that participates in a topology, the next step is to validate the topology. Validating the topology means checking the features to identify any violations of the rules that have been defined for the topology.

Note: Use the Add Data button to add the TaxParcels_Topology to the map and turn on the ESRI Topology Toolbar


Attr Tab 

As integral portions of the data, the need for editing attributes is constant when creating or editing map features. In addition to editing attributes while editing features, attributes may need changed in their own right at separate times.


Anno Tab

Annotation is utilized as permanent text and graphic features found within the maps. The tools provided below make it easy to add or modify annotations on the map.

Thanks go to SDS for providing this template. Keep in mind that if your organization would like to contribute a template to the Code Gallery, you are encouraged to do so. Please see the earlier blog posting, “Submit Your Templates!” for details. The ArcGIS Land Records Team


Posted in Local Government | Tagged , , , , , , , , | Comments Off

ArcGIS JavaScript API printing through PDF

PrinterA common question we received at this year’s ESRI User Conference is how to print maps from the ArcGIS JavaScript API. One way to get a printable map is to export to PDF. ESRI’s Rahul Ravikumar recently uploaded a sample to the Code Gallery that captures an ArcGIS JavaScript API map in a PDF, which can then be printed. He calls this sample Map2PDF.

Map2PDF is a RESTful service that prints all types of layers, including cached (or tiled) map layers, dynamic map layers, and client-side graphics. The sample includes a script PrintMap.js, which helps in serializing ‘map state’ and sends it to the web service. This service uses an open source iText PDF rendering engine to create the PDF.

The Map2PDF sample uses Java Servlet technology and can be deployed any Servlet / J2EE container including Apache Tomcat 6, IBM Websphere, Oracle Weblogic etc. Deployment instructions are included with the Code Gallery download.

Download the Map2PDF sample from the Code Gallery

See an example

Posted in Services | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

How Does the Recession Affect U.S. Household Income?

by Jim Herries

Good article in this month’s ArcWatch, excerpt below, full article here.  I don’t know about you, but I feel the effects of this recession personally, and I see its effects on my neighborhood. 

Good demographic data captures these effects at the smallest levels of geography so that we can take a step back and look at our neighborhoods and  communities, our trade areas and markets.  The data and software tools are certainly here, so the question is: how are you applying this data to your organization’s problems?

“Almost everyone feels the impact of the current recession. Americans who haven’t lost a home or a job are, in many cases, experiencing low or no income growth. They are seeing the value of their houses, savings accounts, and retirement funds decreasing. Credit costs them more. Their hard-strapped state and local governments are cutting back on services. Some businesses in their communities are shuttering due to the downturn.” 

full article here

Posted in Location Analytics | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Thank You!

Now that the 2009 Users Conference is over, the Mobile team would like to thank everyone that attended our technical sessions, came to the island to ask questions and see our demo theatre presentations, and went out to the marina and tried ArcGIS Mobile on a Trimble Juno SB or AT&T Fuze device!

The Users Conference this year was a great success for the mobile team and we learned a lot from talking to all of you. We are now busy wrapping up 9.4 development and preparing for our beta release. Not to mention we are also busy at work at the newly announced iPhone application!

If you were not able to attend the Users Conference or if you were unable to see ArcGIS Mobile 9.4 at the plenary, here is a link to a video of the mobile portion of the presentation.

Mobile team

Posted in Mobile | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Creating an elevation legend

By Mamata Akella, Esri Design Cartographer

Elevation Legend thumb

A common question that we get on Mapping Center is how to create an elevation legend in ArcMap. In September of 2007, there was a blog entry on Mapping Center (Creating a legend for hypsometrically tinted shaded relief) that outlined a method for creating a legend for hypsometrically tinted shaded relief. When that blog was written, the option to Convert Graphics to Features was not yet available. This blog outlines a simpler method for creating an elevation legend using this new option (version 9.3 and later).

Continue reading

Posted in Mapping | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

Geodatabase Essentials Presentations 2009

As promised, here are the slide decks for the Geodatabase Essentials presentations from this year’s User Conference.

The first session given by myself and Colin “The Stuntman” Zwicker focuses mainly on introducing the geodatabase, what it is, why you would use it, what types of geodatabases there are. We also introduce all the fundamental datasets and behavior housed within the geodatabase for modeling real world entities: Tables, Feature classes, Raster, Domains, Subtypes, Topologies, Networks, etc…

The second session given by Brent Arden Pierce and Gary MacDougall focuses on ArcSDE geodatabases and delves into more advanced concepts such as versioning, archiving and replication.

All of the tech workshops given at the UC were recorded as well, I’ll link to those once they’re up on the web.


Posted in Geodata | Tagged , | 1 Comment

Using highway shields of varying widths

By Mamata Akella, Esri Design Cartographer

Highway shields example

Depending on the type of highway you are labeling (interstate highway, U.S. route highway, or state route highway), the standard highway shield symbol may or may not be wide enough for all the characters in your labels. Often, you do not get the desired outcome by simply using one shield for all highway number labels because one size rarely fits all! The numbers look “squished” or they overrun the shield symbol when there are more than two characters (depending on how large you make the shield and the characters). Here are some tricks you can use to create highway shields for labels of varying widths, especially when there are more than two characters in some of the highway names.

Continue reading

Posted in Mapping | Tagged , | 4 Comments

UC 2009 closing session questions posted

The questions asked during the ESRI 2009 User Conference closing session are now posted.

We’ll be providing a summary of our answers to ArcGIS Explorer questions from the conference in upcoming posts.

Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged | Leave a comment