Tag Archives: ArcGIS 10
Remember the excitement you felt the first time an envelope or Highlights issue addressed to you appeared in the mailbox? The eager hope you silently mailed to the North Pole along with the letter painstakingly printed in your best handwriting? How many times in the last 24 hours have you clicked Send or some version of “Share” to communicate with friends and family?
Like many organizations these days, the U.S. Postal Service (USPS) is challenged to constrain operating costs while maintaining an acceptable level of service. Did you know the USPS is required by law to fund its own operations and relies on the sale of postage, products, and services to do so? Changes in mailing behavior have had a huge impact on the USPS bottom line—e-mail requires no postage after all.
A previous post covered converting standard annotation to feature-linked annotation—to recap, it cannot be done directly. A recommended workflow when you have standard annotation that you wish were feature-linked is to create an empty feature-linked annotation class, then append the standard annotation features to it (using the Append Annotation Feature Classes tool).
Several readers have wondered, once you have feature-linked annotation in place, what happens when you need to replace the data linked to the annotation? No one wants to repeat the work of setting up annotation if they can avoid it. Can you change which feature class your feature-linked annotation is linked to?
The answer is no. Feature-linked annotation can be associated with only one feature class (the one specified when the feature-linked annotation was created). The feature-linked annotation and the feature class participate in a relationship class that you cannot alter.
Despite this, when you receive new data, there is a way to preserve the annotation. Continue reading
“Is there an app for that?” has become part of the general vernacular. Don’t think so? Try searching on that particular question and see how many results you get. With Google, Facebook, Android, and Apple regularly dominating media headlines, developers own the “sexy job du jour” title.
So it’s no surprise there’s been discussion in the social sphere recently about whether GIS professionals—analysts, specialists, technicians, and others—should add programming to their list of must-have skills. And how much weight are organizations giving to programming expertise when evaluating GIS job candidates? Continue reading
“If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.” This old adage has wide applicability—when you want to lose 10 pounds, be picked for a leadership position, land the perfect job, and on and on. So just like everything else in life, when it comes to GIS analysis, planning pays off. To ensure reliable results, here’s the tried and true process we recommend:
- Frame the question.
- Explore and prepare data.
- Choose analysis methods and tools.
- Perform the analysis.
- Examine and refine results.
Step 2 is arguably the most critical as your final results are only as reliable as the data you start with. Read on for a closer look at exploring and preparing data for an analysis project. Continue reading
With the holiday season now in full swing, here’s an early present for individuals planning to take one of the ArcGIS Desktop certification exams. We just released a set of sample questions for both the ArcGIS Desktop Associate and ArcGIS Desktop Professional exams. The sample question sets are available for free on the Esri Training website.
Here’s what you can expect:
- Like certification exam questions, sample questions are multiple choice. They are not, however, actual questions from the exams.
- Sample questions cover the same subject areas as the certification exams, but the number of sample questions per subject does not equate to the number of questions per subject on the exams. There may not be sample questions for all subject areas tested by the exams.
- For each question, you can immediately see whether the answer you selected is correct or incorrect. Every question includes an explanation of the correct answer.
- The ArcGIS Desktop Associate set includes 35 sample questions.
- The ArcGIS Desktop Professional set includes 41 sample questions.
We added sample question PDFs to the Certification website some time ago, but those PDFs contain only three questions each and were intended to simply show how exam questions are structured. These new sets of sample questions are intended to be an exam-preparation resource. Of course, they are not a comprehensive resource—the skills and knowledge gained through on-the-job experience are the best preparation for an exam.
If you’re planning to take one of the ArcGIS Desktop exams, here’s hoping the opportunity to do some free self-assessment makes your holiday season a little brighter.
This demo from the Working with Coordinate Systems in ArcGIS 10 Esri Virtual Campus web course shows why understanding coordinate systems is vital for producing accurate GIS maps.
Labeling features can be a time-consuming part of creating a map. When you’re dealing with many features, it may seem downright onerous. But there are ways to make the job easier. Consider this illustrative tale.
Week 1: James—smart, ambitious, new on the job—is designated the department map maker. Sam, data technician by day, ink artist by night, tells James about a new dataset with a thousand or so point features that will be used as an operational layer in several high-profile maps produced by the department. The data will be updated weekly and the maps need to be in sync (Sam also suggests a warrior armband to command respect from Marc, the alpha analyst in the group).
In ArcMap, James adds the point layer and turns on dynamic labels, spends time creating label classes and setting scale ranges and formatting the labels in each class appropriately for the map products. He converts the labels to a standard annotation feature class stored in the same geodatabase as the point feature class so the annotation can be reused easily on multiple maps. He then spends several hours painstakingly positioning the annotation until he’s satisfied the map text looks perfect. Marc will be impressed, he thinks (and mulls whether to go for a drink after work to discuss those Aztec jaguar symbols Sam just texted). Continue reading
A lot of questions on a variety of topics are sent to this blog’s e-mail address (that is, to me). The wording varies, but many people are looking for the same information. A selection of popular questions and insightful answers is below. Maybe you’ve wondered about these same things. Read on and you may save yourself some typing and a Send click.
Finding Things in ArcGIS 10
Question: I keep seeing references to the ArcGIS tutorials, where are they? And where is the data needed for the tutorials?
Answer: The tutorials are part of the ArcGIS documentation and are a great (free) resource to get up to speed with the software tools and workflows for completing a wide variety of tasks. At version 10, the tutorials themselves (step-by-step instructions) are topics within the ArcGIS Desktop Help system; they appear as subfolders within the main subject categories. For example, the editing tutorial is located at Professional Library > Data Management > Editing data > Editing tutorial.
The tutorial data is an optional part of the ArcGIS Desktop installation. If selected, the tutorial data installs to C:ArcGISArcTutor (default location). Within the ArcTutor folder, the data is organized into topical subfolders. So the first thing to do is search your system for the ArcTutor folder.
If you don’t find the tutorial data, check with your system administrator or the person who manages ArcGIS installation at your organization to see if the data was installed to a network share. If it wasn’t installed at all, you (or they) can modify the installation from the media (DVD) or the download file to get the data.
Speaking of data… Continue reading
In Training Services, much of the course development work this year has focused on the web, Virtual Campus training specifically. We now have more than 30 web courses available—and about a dozen more are baking in the oven as we speak. Topics include mobile GIS, Python, 3D GIS, the geodatabase, raster data, and spatial analysis using ArcGIS Spatial Analyst and Geostatistical Analyst.
At ArcGIS 10, web courses have gotten a facelift. They now feature demos, graphic slideshows, and interactive drag and drop activities designed to reinforce key concepts. Hands-on exercises are still the star of the show. Exercises give you practice applying the software to complete realistic GIS tasks and workflows. Everything has been wrapped in a new interface that’s cleaner and more modern-looking.
We think the beauty of web courses is more than skin-deep, however. Virtual Campus training for ArcGIS 10 was developed using a modified ADDIE model and incorporates adult learning principles. Courses are shorter (about three hours), task-based, and emphasize problem-solving and practice (the two Ps) to achieve the course learning objectives. The demos and conceptual material preview and prepare you for the exercises.
The demo below is from one of the new web courses, Using Raster Data for Site Selection (for ArcGIS 10). In the demo, Esri Educational Specialist Ryan Otto shows how the ArcGIS 10 fuzzy logic tools can help bring clarity to the uncertainty inherent to some GIS analyses.
What’s also clear from the feedback we’ve received is that the web course makeover is a success. Next in line for a little nip and tuck are our popular (and free) live training seminars. Starting with today’s broadcasts of Getting the Most Out of ArcGIS Explorer Online, we’re improving the experience by using a Flash stream. Anyone with Flash on their computer can access the broadcast. We’re also working on a solution to make recorded training seminars accessible on mobile devices. Look for that in another month or two.
Watch the demo [4:01 minutes, 6.3 MB]
If you’re heading for San Diego this weekend, you’re likely still deciding which sessions to attend, maybe making plans to meet up with friends, and perhaps even looking forward to getting inspired by all that the GIS community has accomplished in the last year.
As those of us who work in Training Services and the Esri Technical Certification program prepare for the UC, we’ve been thinking about what we’ve accomplished—and how much work is ahead of us for the remainder of the year. We’re looking forward to talking with conference attendees about those things. If you’re going to San Diego and you want info about training or certification, here’s the UC breakdown. Continue reading