Monthly Archives: June 2008

Adding Geotagged Photos To Your Map

One of the new tasks delivered with ArcGIS Explorer 480 is the Add Photo task. The Add Photo task places photos that have been geotagged on the map. Have a look at the video, then follow along in this post.

Let’s take a closer look. First, add the task from the ArcGIS Explorer Resource Center. Choose File > Resource Center and from the Content tab choose Tasks. You can also open the Resource Center by choosing Help > ArcGIS Explorer Resource Center, then click on the Content tab, then Tasks. The Add Photo task is circled below, just click to add it to Explorer.

Your photos must have been taken with a GPS enabled camera that can capture the location in the image header (written to the EXIF header). An increasing number of cameras (like the Ricoh GPS camera, some Nikon models, and others) and even camera equiped cell phones (like the Nokia N95) are GPS-enabled.

If you don’t have one of these devices the location can be added to your photos afterwards using applications like Google Picasa and others.

Activate the task and click Browse to navigate to a folder containing geotagged photos. The folder’s contents are displayed in the task (note that only JPEG format images are supported). Just check the photos you want to add, and click Place Photos.

A collection of results will appear, and the photos will be placed on your map.


When you click the result the photo will open in the popup window. Here we’ve added a couple of geotagged photos taken during a recent search and rescue operation in the San Bernardino Mountains near Redlands. These photos were taken by a member of the SAR team, and are now placed on our Explorer map.

The Add Photo task allows you to specify settings which let you control whether subfolders are searched, and how various image sizes are handled and displayed in the popup window.

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Connections to 9.3 geodatabases

This post was submitted by Kim Peter who is a product engineer and technical writer on the geodatabase development team

In order to take advantage of new functionality added to the geodatabase in a release of ArcGIS, the geodatabase must be upgraded.  This will be the case with ArcGIS 9.3, as we’ve added new functionality to terrains and network datasets:

To see how you can upgrade a geodatabase to the 9.3 release, consult the help topics Upgrading file and personal geodatabases, Upgrading geodatabases on database servers, and Upgrade summary for ArcSDE geodatabases.

However, this doesn’t mean that you need to upgrade your ArcGIS 9.3 clients to 9.3 in order to connect to and use 9.3 geodatabases. You will still be able to connect from a client with ArcGIS 9.2 SP5 or later service pack to a 9.3 geodatabase. For example, if a coworker sends you a file geodatabase he or she created with an ArcGIS Desktop 9.3 client, you can open and edit it in your ArcGIS 9.2 SP5 client.

As with previous geodatabase upgrades, if you decide not to upgrade your geodatabases but you do install the 9.3 release of the client software, you will be able to connect from the 9.3 client to 9.2 geodatabases. If you don’t need to take advantage of the new functionality for terrains and network datasets, the geodatabase upgrade is optional and not required.

Be aware, though, there are a couple of caveats to these inter-release connections.

They are as follows:

  • You have to have at least service pack 5 applied to the client application to be able to connect and edit from a 9.2 client to a geodatabase that has been upgraded to the 9.3 release.
  • If connecting from a 9.2 SP5 or SP6 client to a 9.3 geodatabase, you will have all the 9.2 functionality available to you.
  • If connecting from an ArcGIS 9.3 client to a geodatabase that has not been upgraded from 9.2, ArcGIS will prevent you from using 9.3 functionality in the geodatabase.
  • If making direct connections from the client application to an ArcSDE geodatabase, additional drivers need to be installed. This configuration will be discussed in a future blog post.
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Representations tip: Using data-driven settings to transition printed maps to map services

By Charlie Frye, Esri Chief Cartographer

Put yourself in the shoes of one of my interns, who was asked to use representations to replicate a 1:100,000 scale geologic map.  In less than two weeks she got it done, and did so well that the next thing I asked her to do was to test ArcGIS Server and make a map service with her map. Those intricate little point symbols on geologic maps that are rotated by their strike angles and labeled with their dip angles were just too small to be seen clearly on screen.  We needed to make them bigger.  Continue reading

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Sharing via E-mail Video

Here’s a video showing the E-mail capabilities in ArcGIS Explorer 480. The video complements a previous blog post that presents a short tutorial on the same topic.

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Sharing via E-mail with ArcGIS Explorer

(View a video of how to share Explorer results via e-mail)

You’ve always been able to E-mail your saved or exported NMF files, but until the 480 release you’ve had to do that outside of Explorer. With the latest release (Explorer 480) you can now e-mail an entire map, a layer, or a result directly from ArcGIS Explorer. Here’s how.

To e-mail your entire map, go to File and choose E-mail (or hit Ctrl+E).

To E-mail a layer, right click the layer and choose E-mail. Note that the E-mail capability is only enabled for Web-based services that can be shared, not for local data sources that might not be available to the e-mail recipient.

There are several ways to e-mail a result. The first is to right-click the result in the result window and choose E-mail. You can e-mail a single result, or an entire group or results this way.

The second way is to right-click the result on the map, and choose E-mail. Here we’ve right-clicked a result that is the location of a live traffic cam in the Phoenix area.

The third way is to open the popup window for a result, and choose the E-mail Result option which appears at the bottom of the window. If you e-mail a result with its popup window open, when the recipient opens it the popup window will automatically appear. Here we’ve chosen one of the traffic cam results, and e-mailed it with its popup window open so the recipient will automatically see the current traffic conditions.

In each of the above cases, the NMF file is generated on-the-fly and automatically added to your e-mail as an attachment, along with some descriptive text. You can add your own message to the text that is automatically inserted, or clear the message and start your message from scratch. All the recipient needs is to have ArcGIS Explorer installed (there are instructions automatically inserted in the e-mail) and then double-click the NMF attachment to view it using Explorer.

For more information view the Sharing content with e-mail Help topic.

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Heat map

Question: I feel silly asking this but I can’t find the way to create “heat map” style surface representations in ArcMap. Can you help?

Answer: No problem, our profession is riddled with ambiguous terminology (one of the reasons I have a job).  The Spatial Analyst has a suite of interpolation tools, and the online help for this area is generally quite good.  The intro. help topic is called Understanding interpolation analysis and the related topics will get you to the rest of what you need to know.

From your follow up email, it sounds like you’ve got  point data which will be the input to any of the interpolation tools.  Read about the various methods and determine which tool is best for your needs.  You can either set an analysis mask or use the Raster Clip tool after the fact to trim the edges of your raster output to your geography (if needed–the values outside of your geography will become NO DATA).

From there it is just a matter of choosing a color ramp to represent that values in your raster output.  See the Hot Spot Analysis map on mapping center (panel #4) for an example of this process.

Attachment: Heat Map example
Formerly a Mapping Center Ask a Cartographer  Q & A.
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ArcGIS Explorer 480 Has Been Released!

The ArcGIS Explorer Team is pleased to announce that ArcGIS Explorer 480 has been released.

If the ESRI servers are your home servers, you’ll be notified that there is a new version available the next time you start the application. Just follow the instructions to download and install this new release.

For those that deploy Explorer from your own home servers, you’ll need to swap your versions and update your version.html file to push out the new release to your users. With this release we’ve reorganized the home server folder structure. Please refer to the Migrating from a previous version of ArcGIS Explorer Home Server documentation included in the new ArcGIS Home Server Help.

This release has lots of new features, check out the What’s New in ArcGIS Explorer 480 document for a detailed list of all the new features and enhancements. At the top of our list are improved performance, E-mail capabilities, support for GeoRSS feeds and enterprise geodatabases (ArcSDE), improved dashboarding, GPX file import, and there’s a lot more. We’ll be covering these in more detail here on the blog.

Feel free to send us your feedback, and let us know what you think. We’ll also be monitoring the Explorer discussion forum to help you with any questions that you may have.

- The ArcGIS Explorer Team

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2008 UC Featured Workshop: Getting Started with ArcGIS Server

ESRI International User ConferenceThe 2008 ESRI International User Conference is only six weeks away. This year’s conference offers dozens of ArcGIS Server-related technical workshops and demo theater presentations. Between now and the conference, we’ll be offering a sneak peek at some of these sessions.

Getting Started with ArcGIS Server is a high-level session designed to give an overview of what ArcGIS Server is and what you can do with it.

The presenters, Tom Brenneman and Canserina Kurnia have much experience authoring and teaching ArcGIS Server training courses for ESRI Educational Services. Tom comments:

“I think this session will help people make a mental connection between the tasks that they need to accomplish back in the office and the part of ArcGIS Server that is designed to accomplish that task. Once you know the technology that you can leverage to do your job, you can dig into that specific technology in other sessions.”

Getting Started with ArcGIS Server

  • Tuesday, August 5, 8:30 AM – 9:45 AM
    Room 6B
  • Wednesday, August 6, 3:15 PM – 4:30 PM
    Room 6B

UC Tip: The first offering of this session was very popular last year, so you may want to arrive early or attend the second offering.

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Strategy question: What is the best way to manage overflow annotation on street maps?

By Charlie Frye, Esri Chief Cartographer

We got one of those perennial ‘tough nut’ questions on Ask a Cartographer today. The question has to do with using annotation versus on the fly labeling with Maplex and what are often called overflow labels, which I have also heard called “key lists”. While we are able to recommend tips and tools for specific circumstances or implementations, the person asking was more interested in what is the best strategy and why. So here’s their question: Continue reading

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New podcast discusses ArcGIS Server geodata services

A new podcast, “Overview of Geodata Services in ArcGIS Server”, is available on the ESRI Instructional Series Podcasts site. In this podcast, Technical Analyst Derek Law describes how geodata services provide remote access to geodatabases. He explains what geodata services can do, how to create them, and how to make sure they run effectively.

Read the transcript [PDF]
Listen or download: MP3 [10:49 | 4.97 MB]

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