Category: Python

PyCon 2014!

It is only a few short months until PyCon 2014 and this year Esri is proud to be a Gold sponsor of this wonderful gathering of Python developers! The conference will be held April 11 – 13 in Montreal, QC.

PyCon is an excellent place to learn about Python and get updated with what’s happening within the community and the language. For more information about the conference and how it is organized, please visit the PyCon website at

On Sunday April 13 from 10:00am to 1:00pm, meet us in the Job Fair to learn how to become a part of our innovative team or visit

We hope to see you at PyCon 2014!

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Quick Tips: Consuming Feature Services with Geoprocessing

Identifying a feature service

Do you work with Feature Services? Do you want to use geoprocessing tools or Python to perform analysis with ArcGIS for Desktop? Here’s a few quick tips for using a hosted feature service from or your own ArcGIS for Server … Continue reading

Posted in Analysis & Geoprocessing, ArcGIS Online, Python, Services | Tagged , , , , , | 5 Comments

Make Topographic Grid and Update Map Template Released!


Have you ever wanted to extend your map automation scripts to include layer masking and clipping without having to open the map document?  With the recent release of Esri Production Mapping 10.2 you can do just that and much more! … Continue reading

Posted in Analysis & Geoprocessing, Cartographic Design, Defense, Mapping, Python | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

Create Declination Diagram (North Arrow) with Python


Update: An update to the World Magnetic Model (WMM) released in the year 2015 causes errors when executing the python tool available with this template. This is addressed in the recent patches for Esri Production Mapping as fixes to the … Continue reading

Posted in Cartographic Design, Defense, Mapping, Python | Tagged , , | 11 Comments

Extending Geoprocessing through Python Modules


With the release of ArcGIS 10.2, you can utilize the Python Distribution Utilities (Distutils) as part of a process to efficiently distribute Python toolboxes and custom toolboxes containing Models and Script Tools in the form of Python modules. Once a … Continue reading

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Scheduling a Python script or model to run at a prescribed time


At the Spatial Analysis and Geoprocessing island at this year’s user conference, several folks asked us about running a Python script or ModelBuilder model at a prescribed time — usually in the early morning when their computers are bored and … Continue reading

Posted in Analysis & Geoprocessing, Python | Tagged , , | 29 Comments

Choosing the right Python Integrated Development Environment


This blog is solely intended to be used as a reference to learn which Python integrated development environment (IDE) might be best for you or your organization. Since there are many IDEs to choose from, picking the right one can … Continue reading

Posted in Python | Tagged | 11 Comments

Invitation to participate in an Esri software Usability Study at the User Conference

The Esri development team would like to invite you to participate in a moderated and recorded usability study of a new application for GIS professionals currently under development.

Who we’re looking for…

  • Existing ArcGIS for Desktop users
  • ArcGIS Online and App users interested in professional GIS software
  • Users of Esri Solutions (Local Government, Water Utilities, Land Records, 3D cities and campuses)
  • Users with varying degrees of experience who author maps,  analyze \ edit data, and manage GIS content

In total, we’re looking for 30 committed testers.

How it works…
Our sole intent and goal for this study is to assess the usability of our next generation professional desktop software; we want you to test our software, we’re not testing your computer, nor ArcGIS skills.

To consider you as a usability tester, we require that you are registered and approved by your employer to attend Esri User Conference and complete a pre-screening questionnaire—details below. Your time in the test lab is about 40 minutes.

Your test session will be recorded and observed by one or more members of the development team.

Click here to sign up

We thank you in advance for your time and look forward to meeting you in San Diego.

Posted in 3D GIS, Analysis & Geoprocessing, Defense, Editing, Electric & Gas, Geodata, Hydro, Imagery, Local Government, Mapping, National Government, Oceans & Maritime, Petroleum, Public Safety, Python, Spatial Statistics, State Government, Telecommunications, Transportation, Water Utilities | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

How is GIS Meeting the Needs of Ocean (and other) Sciences? Plus, Minus, Interesting…


Among the most important activities at the Esri Oceans Summit (November 7–8, 2012; see prior blog post 1 and prior prior blog post 2) were the breakout groups, where participants were called upon to identify major barriers to the use … Continue reading

Posted in 3D GIS, Analysis & Geoprocessing, Hydro, Oceans & Maritime, Python, Spatial Statistics | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Are you sure Intersect is the right tool for the job?

Are you sure Intersect is the right tool for the job?


ArcGIS Pro 1.0 introduced a PairwiseIntersect tool which emulates the pairwise tool discussed in this blog post.
ArcGIS Pro 1.1 has an additional pairwise tool, Pairwise Dissolve.
By default, starting in ArcGIS Pro 1.1, both the PairwiseIntersect and PairwiseDissolve tools run in parallel mode. This will allow these tools to distribute the work to all (or a portion of) the logical cores on the machine. The performance benefit of parallel processing varies from tool to tool and depends on the input data being processed.

Please see the following for more info: PairwiseIntersect and PairwiseDissolve

(Note: There are no system Pairwise tools provided in 10.x. Continue to use the provided methodology and scripts included with this post.)


I often talk with people using ArcGIS Geoprocessing who find themselves surprised about the amount of time the Intersect tool takes to run, or confused about the output results.  Much of the time this confusion comes from a misperception about what tool to use for the analysis, or from a lack of understanding of what the Intersect tool does.

Here’s an example… A user contacted me about the Intersect tool because the tool would run for hours and then fail. They perceived their data as small and really thought Intersect would only take a few minutes.

My first question, and one you should ask too is, “What do you really want for a result?”

The answer in this, and many cases was “I want to know how much of each feature in input 1 is in each feature in input 2.”

Cool!  That means Intersect is not the right tool to use! Continue reading

Posted in Analysis & Geoprocessing, Python | Tagged , , , , | 31 Comments