Tag: COP

What’s New in Operations Dashboard (December 2017)


At-a-glance decision making with Operations Dashboard for ArcGIS We are very excited to announce that Operations Dashboard for ArcGIS has moved out of beta and is now released! It is included with your ArcGIS Online subscription and will be available … Continue reading

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Operations Dashboard for ArcGIS Open Beta!


We are pleased to announce the first public beta of the next generation of Operations Dashboard for ArcGIS! Join us and get started now! We are rebuilding on the web and starting today we will be releasing a series of … Continue reading

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Operations Dashboard for ArcGIS v10.3 is live now!

Operations Dashboard for ArcGIS just released it’s 10.3 update and you can download it from ArcGIS Online right now!

There are a number of very focused, great new enhancements to take advantage of with this update and we have made a number of stability improvements as well.

Here are some top enhancements to look for… Continue reading

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What’s new in the Public Safety COP Template?


The Public Safety COP Template has recently been updated and is now based on the ArcGIS Viewer for Flex 2.5.  This was a big update and there are many new and community widgets included in this release. The new widgets … Continue reading

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Tools for Social Media

During the Emergency Management Special Interest Group (SIG) Meeting (sponsored by IBM) at the Esri International User Conference I gave a talk on Tools for Social Media.  Many of you were interested in the tools so I wanted to share the links via this blog.

Public Information Map

The first tool we talked about was the Public Information Map.  This application is something that we have developed over time to include live mapping in support of our Disaster Response Program website.  The Public Information Map is available as a template that you can download and configure.

There are many live examples of the Public Information Map that you can visit now with current information in support of our Disaster Response Program.  The Public Information Map Template has been configured for:

Also note that Jeff Archer (@vee_dubb) wrote a nice blog post on lessons learned applying this template.

Social Media Widget

Social Media is on a path to evolve to become another critical source of situational awareness just like weather.  A Social Media Widget has been developed to be able to bring in Social Media into command and control applications, such as the Common Operational Picture Template

Here is an example of the Social Media widget in action during the National Level Exercise we tracked the Commonwealth of Kentucky Division of Emergency Management Public Information Officer as she traveled around the State with the Brigadier General:

ArcGIS.com Tweet Mapping Template

As described in this previous ArcGIS Online blog, you can add Twitter to your ArcGIS.com map.  Simply create your ArcGIS.com web map and then share using the Azure Twitter template.   Here’s an example from the #EsriUC and the 5K Fun Run/Walk:

Ushahidi ArcGIS Desktop Add-In

Often times during disasters we will stand up a Trends Map, such as this example from Japan, where we can look at the density of Ushahidi reports visualized as a heat map.  During the flooding in Australia, we took this one step further and put together an ArcGIS Desktop Add-In for Ushahidi data so you could export Ushahidi data in to a local geodatabase to do further analysis.  The Add-In for Australia flooding example can be found on ArcGIS.com.

We are actively working with the Ushahidi community to make this tool more generic and broadly available.  Stay tuned for more information.

ArcGIS Explorer Twitter Add-In

The ArcGIS Explorer Twitter Add-In was updated just before the User Conference.  Here’s an example screenshot of a slightly earlier version of the tool from when FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate (@CraigAtFEMA) came to visit Esri last year.


There you have it, a tour of some of the Social Media Tools
and Templates from Esri that we discussed during the Emergency Management SIG.  This is an area that we continue to do more
research and development on.  Watch
Twitter and the blogs for more updates!

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Esri's Disaster Response Program

For many years Esri has provided assistance in the wake of disasters throughout the world.  The support comes in many forms including software, data, hardware and people.  Not only is it about Corporate Citizenship and helping our users but it gets to the very essence of Esri-making the world a better place through geography.  We know that maps and Geographic Information System (GIS) technology can make a difference in saving lives, reducing impact, and expediting restoration.  The mission of the Esri Disaster Response Program is to support our users, our partners, and Esri personnel who respond to disasters worldwide. 

How does Esri support these individuals? Well, there are many people involved behind the scenes when an incident happens all working to help the response effort.  Some of the different ways in which Esri personnel support the response includes:

  • Coordinate requests for assistance and make sure they are met
  • Contact our users and make sure they are okay and they have what they need
  • Process temporary licenses of software and ship media as needed
  • Collect and provide pointers to relevant data sources
  • Coordinate offers of assistance and support from our business partners
  • Travel to the incident in order to support the response effort
  • Stand-up and provide round the clock technical support as needed
  • Build and update web mapping applications that help provide situational awareness
  • Provide updates and information on our website about each incident

Recent software advances have resulted in ArcGIS becoming easier, faster, and more powerful-all of which are critical for support in any disaster.  We have increased the presence of live maps on Esri.com including more disaster specific applications such as the Latest News Map for example.  There are several different types of applications and we’ll put them up on our website for several different reasons. 

If the impact of a disaster is large enough on our planet and on our users, we will stand-up a website for the specific event.   One of the main purposes of this is to give GIS personal assigned to the incident more information about the geography and nature of the incident by bringing in relevant data sources that provide context.  We also include dynamic information from social media such as Twitter, Flickr, and YouTube.  Sometimes focused applications will be launched that include more detailed analytical tools and data that complement the available knowledge of an existing situation.

The main page for our disaster support is through this short URL-esri.com/disaster.  From this link you can access several permanent disaster sites that are specific to reoccurring disasters such as:

We mentioned that if the impact is large enough, we stand-up websites to support them and our users.  Here are a few examples of event specific sites that have been stood-up recently:

Some of the information from these applications and websites is of interest to the general public and news media.  We have created a short link that indexes the active disasters which can be quickly referenced for information esri.com/news/maps/.  Additionally you can see all of the maps we’ve produced over the last year-esri.com/news/maps/all.html.

How can you use Esri technology to support your own response efforts? Through our Public Safety Resource Center we provide a series of maps and applications for emergency management that may be used to stand-up a new capability quickly in response to an incident.  These templates not only include an application that can be used as a starting point but also include an information model delivered through a geodatabase, and standard symbology for disaster response.  All of these templates and resources are best practices that we have collected from our users who are subject matter experts in this area.  The templates for emergency management include:

We hope you find this information and resources helpful.  We hope you never have to use them for response but, when disaster strikes remember that the Esri Disaster Response Program is standing by to help!

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10 Steps to Configure the COP Template within Your Organization

The Public Safety COP Template is designed to be starter application to help you quickly implement the ArcGIS Viewer for Flex to provide situational awareness for your organization.  This download package contains many of the tools and feeds that you have seen in our demonstrations and training.  If you already have ArcGIS Server installed and configured you can go through these steps in about an hour.  Obviously having an ArcGIS Server instance available somewhere within your organization is a prerequisite.  Your data should be well organized and you should have your operational layers and basemaps published.  This blog post contains the 10 basic steps to get this application set up within your organization.

To get started you can download this template from http://www.arcgis.com/home/item.html?id=1d90b418b78e40158914bd5178b6892f.  For these 10 steps we are going to basically walk through the main configuration file (config.xml).  More information is in the help documentation – see http://help.arcgis.com/en/webapps/flexviewer/help/mainconfig.htm

Step 1 – Pick your title and subtitle

Up at the top select the title and subtitle for your application.  Often terms like GIS get lost on the broader Public Safety Community.  Terms like Common Operational Picture (COP) or Situational Awareness seem to resonate more.  In some cases specific application names and/or acronyms seem to take on a life of their own.  For example applications like Virginia’s VIPER or Florida’s GATOR applications are great examples of this.  Consider coming up with a good acronym (such as an aggressive animal) for your organization.

Step 2 – Pick your logo

Next find an image to include in the upper left of the application.  This image should be 48 x 48 pixels.

Optionally include your logo over the map as a Static Image Widget – see – http://help.arcgis.com/en/webapps/flexviewer/help/widgets/staticimage_widget.htm


Step 3- Pick your colors

There are several color options that you can change quickly.  See – http://help.arcgis.com/en/webapps/flexviewer/help/styling.htm.  I’ve been coached by our graphics department not to go overboard and have colors so bright that they distract from the map.  Setting the colors to match your organizations current web theme or “brand” can be quickly achieved by setting the colors appropriately. 


Step 4 – Set your initial extent

Set the initial extent of your map for your jurisdiction.  There is a handy helper utility here – http://help.arcgis.com/en/webapps/flexviewer/help/extenthelper/flexviewer_extenthelper.html – where you can zoom in to an area and copy the initial extent parameters and paste it in to your config.xml file.  Note to make sure you match the aspect ratio of the helper utility to how our app will be normally displayed.


Step 5 – Basemaps

In order to provide context to your operational layers select the basemaps that are appropriate for your organization.  New in version 2.2 of the ArcGIS Viewer for Flex you can combine local basemaps with global basemaps like those from ArcGIS Online or Bing.  There are several local government templates for basemaps.  Those include:

Step 6 – Live feeds from other organizations

The COP Template is already configured with live feeds from both the USGS and Pacific Disaster Center.  Add other feeds such as your State or Location Department of Transportation or make your own using the Live Feeds Template.


Step 7 – Your operational data

The next step is to organize the data you manage.  From the Emergency Management perspective this can include things like shelters, incidents, damage assessment, and field crew locations.  The COP template provides layers for these.  The other thing to consider is organizing your critical infrastructure data.  Access to other business systems is also important; this is where the “Common” in COP comes in to play and things like Computer-Aided Dispatch, AVL, and Traffic Systems are important to be connected to. 


Step 8 – Configure Public Safety COP widgets

The Public Safety COP Templates comes with three custom widgets – the ERG Widget, Report by Exception and Find Closest Facility.  Configure these widgets to point to your own data.  For example you can configure the ERG Widget to point to your own critical infrastructure layer.


Step 9 – Get other widgets and organize them

There are many widgets that come with the application out of the box.  There additional widgets from the community – http://help.arcgis.com/en/webapps/flexviewer/gallery.html.  I’ve listed some of the Public Safety related widgets here:

Step 10 – Configure the Splash Screen

Finally configure the Splash Widget for your organization using HTML formatting standards.  You can include hyperlinks.

Now that you have this set up promote this within your organization!  Perhaps you can use this in support of upcoming exercise.  Here’s an example of the COP Template that I have configured in support of the 2011 National Level Exercise:


Here are some additional resources that may be helpful as you move forward:

Introduction to the ArcGIS Viewer for Flex – FREE recorded Live Training Seminar – http://training.esri.com/acb2000/showdetl.cfm?did=6&Product_id=983

If you are looking to go from a configurator to a developer here are some good training resources:



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Public Safety Common Operational Picture Template v. 2.2 Released

The February 7, 2011 release of the Public Safety Common Operational Picture template for ArcGIS 10 addresses the following:

New Functionality

1. Added support for the ArcGIS Viewer for Flex 2.2

2. Added support for the dynamic Legend Widget and removed the static Legend contained in About link

3. Updated symbology for incident point, line and polygon features

4. Added a custom pop up widget to display feature information (aliases, field formatting, etc.)

5. Converted imagery hybrid basemap in to a web map that now includes the World Imagery ArcGIS Online service and a reference overlay from the local government geodatabase

Resolved Problems


Known Issues


Also note that a video on How to use the Public Safety COP Template for ArcGIS 10 has been posted to the Local Government Video Gallery.

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Public Safety Resource Center Migration Complete

As many of you may have seen, the original Resource Center (http://resources.esri.com/) has been retired and we have migrated the Public Safety Content to the new ArcGIS 10 Resource Center (http://resources.arcgis.com/). The Public Safety Resource Center (http://resources.arcgis.com/public-safety) is now a part of the Local Government Resource Center.  This is due in part to the fact that many Public Safety agencies rely on traditional local government GIS shops for much of their base data.  Now there is single Local Government Information Model that supports the needs of Public Safety and Emergency Management.

Last fall we completed the updates to ArcGIS 10 for the Emergency Management templates.  These updates, along with new templates, are detailed in this blog post – ArcGIS 10 Public Safety Templates Released.  Here are direct links to the Public Safety ArcGIS 10 Templates:

All of the content from the 9.3 Resource Center has been moved.  Here are the links to the ArcGIS 9.3 content from the original Resource Center for your convenience:

9.3 Templates

9.3 Videos

All of the videos that were part of the Media Gallery are now in the Local Government Videos section – http://resources.arcgis.com/gallery/video/local-government.  Here are direct links to the 9.3 videos for your reference:

The Emergency Response Guide (ERG) Geoprocessing tools for ArcGIS have been very popular.  These tools and associated Flex widget are included in the Common Operational Picture (COP) templates.  This tool is also available directly from the Geoprocessing Resource Center.  Here are the direct links for this tool:

The location of Public Safety blog remains the same – http://blogs.esri.com/Dev/blogs/publicsafety/default.aspx.  We are also on Twitter – http://twitter.com/GISPublicSafety and Facebook.  


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Mobile Mapping for First Responders

Last week at our headquarters we hosted a meeting of nearly 100 Public Safety and GIS Professionals as a part of the NAPSG Foundation User Group meetings series.  After opening remarks from Esri President, Jack Dangermond, we conducted a Wildfire mapping exercise and used our mobile technology to map the fire. One of the mobile tools used to map the fire was an iPhone. 

Since August, we have had a free iPhone application on the app store (http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/arcgis/id379687930?mt=8).  We have recently updated this application, now allowing users to collect GIS data directly from the iPhone. This builds on current technological trends, like harnessing the power of social media in a more focused way.  It also creates a vehicle to easily capture Volunteered Geographic Information.  This type of citizen-engagement-where anyone can supply critical situational awareness information during an emergency-is a growing trend.   Advances in our technology let our users tap into this information stream more easily and in a focused way.  The events of last week were really a milestone in broadening the access to GIS and supporting the public safety mission.

In the context of our exercise, traditionally at a wildfire, a GIS Specialist will make maps based on reports from the field and infrared imagery using our desktop tools and the Fire Incident Mapping Tools (FIMT).  Here’s an example of one of those maps from the Fourmile Canyon fire:

In this exercise, lead by our Wildfire Specialist Tom Patterson, participants used ruggedized devices (like those used in the Gulf Oil Spill), iPhones, and iPads to map the fire.  Leveraging GPS on the devices the mappers “walked the perimeter” of the fire and the information was captured in GIS.


The information collected on the devices is instantly available back in a Common Operational Picture (COP) application.


Additionally, teams in the field can be tracked (via the ArcGIS Mobile Field Crew Task).

So there you have it-some very exciting developments in GIS technology that we wanted to share with you.  Users data from their existing Esri infrastructure is now available for viewing and contributing to from modern devices like the iPhone or iPad.  We also have technology for the Windows Phone and Android.

Special thanks to Esri’s ArcGIS Mobile team for their support of the exercise and for Public Safety!

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