Tag: Navigation

ArcGIS Pro Tips: Thinking About Linking – 2D and 3D Views


One great advantage of using ArcGIS Pro is the 3D GIS capabilities built into the app. You can visualize your data and see patterns that you might not notice in 2D. Two dimensional maps are what you think of as … Continue reading

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ArcGIS Pro Tips: Shortcut Savvy Navigation


I’ve experienced moments like this on more than one occasion. Maybe you’ve been there too: “Ok, I’m almost done tracing this building, but the top left corner is just outside of the view. Great, now I need to adjust my view … Continue reading

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A commercial grade solution for every team member

Multiple locations b

Navigator for ArcGIS is an app that gets you or your workforce where it needs to be, improving efficiency and reliability. Like many consumer grade navigation products, Navigator calculates directions, searches for addresses and places, and guides you to your … Continue reading

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Hydrographic Special Interest Group sets sail at the Esri UC

Global Chart Viewer

More than 50 users from organizations ranging from the International Hydrographic Bureau (secretariat of the International Hydrographic Organization), NOAA Office of Coast Survey, Danish Geodata Agency (GST), and the Yangtze River Waterways Authority and several other users from the maritime … Continue reading

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Mouse-wheeling around in ArcGIS Explorer

If you have a mouse that looks like this:

You can use your mouse wheel to zoom in or out. Just spin it forwards or backwards. Want to change the direction that the mouse wheel zooms? Just do the following.

Open the ArcGIS Explorer Options by clicking the ArcGIS Explorer button (the Explorer globe logo in the upper left) and then click the options button.

Choose Navigation

Then look for the Mouse Wheel section. Just toggle the choice you prefer.

You can also follow the Help link you find there for more information about navigation options.

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Controlling navigation when you add content

By default ArcGIS Explorer will automatically navigate to the extent of the content you add to your map. Don’t like this behavior? Here’s how to change it.

First, click the ArcGIS Explorer button in the upper left, then click ArcGIS Explorer Options.

On the Common options look under Map Navigation. Check Automatically navigate when content is added to the map off.

Now when you add content to your map your location will not change. To zoom to your newly added content just double-click it in the Contents window.

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Speeding Up Your Exploration

Recently one of our team members visited a client who was complaining about lackluster performance. It turned out they were gauging performance by typing in an address, and letting Explorer navigate from the default global view to the address to display the local imagery. Then they would double-click another result, and let Explorer navigate to another location in a different part of the world.

The “fix” to improve performance was actually so simple that it’s often overlooked by many users. All that we did was adjust the Point-To-Point navigation speed, and demonstrate the Move Here capability. Here’s more details.

When Explorer is installed there are certain user options that are set automatically. One of those is the Point-To-Point travel speed, which is set to 1.0 by default. Whenever you travel from one location to another, this setting is used to control the rate of travel to the new destination. The very first time you visit an area, image tiles are fetched from the server and cached locally for display. The next time you visit that location (provided you haven’t cleared your cache) the imagery will be read directly from your local cache.

With the default setting of 1.0, the travel time from a global scale to a local scale will take a while, perhaps more than you’d like. One way to make travel faster is to choose Tools, then Options, and then select Flight Characteristics. You can bump up the Point-To-Point speed, and experiment with different settings to find one that you like. Try bumping it up to 10, and try your navigation again. You’ll see a dramatic difference!

The Liftoff Distance is also used for traveling from one place to another, but in general we like to keep it set at the default.

The Point-To-Point speed setting is also used when double-clicking an existing result. Increasing the Point-To-Point speed will increase your performance here as well. But another, and even quicker, way to go from one result to another is to right-click the result and choose Move Here.

Using these settings and choices you’ll notice much faster point-to-point navigation. And once you’ve visited a place, local cache is available making subsequent visits almost instantaneous. We’ll be looking at tweaking these default options in a future release.

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Navigating Navigation Options

There several ways that you can navigate with Explorer. All are explained in the Help, under Exploring and Navigating Maps.

One of the ways is using the Navigator, the round disk that by default resides in the lower left of the map display. When it’s maximized you’ll see tips that explain the various controls. The tips are useful, but you may want to toggle them off eventually. To do so, choose Tools > Options, then click Map Display. You’ll see a checkbox for Show Tooltips, which is enabled by default. Just check it off.

Another way to navigate is using the mouse. Again, a good explanation is found in the Help. Try holding down the middle mouse button, and moving your mouse up to tilt your perpsective, then move your mouse to the right or left. That’s an effective way to rotate your view, especially when zoomed in.

The keyboard is also very handy for navigation. Try hitting the F key to move forward, then use the Left and Right Arrow keys to change direction. Hit the Up Arrow to move faster, the Down Arrow will slow you down, or move you in the opposite direction. The J and L keys zoom you in and out respectively, the I and K keys adjust your tilt. 

You’ll likely find that a combination of using all three navigation methods–mouse, keyboard, and Navigator–will suit your personal navigation needs. Just experiment to find the right combination for you.

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