ArcGIS Blog » Mapping http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis ArcGIS Blog Wed, 27 May 2015 22:16:01 +0000 en-US hourly 1 http://wordpress.org/?v=3.4.2 Cascadia graces the cover of the 2015 Esri Map Book http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/2015/05/22/cascadia-makes-the-cover-of-the-2015-esri-map-book/ http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/2015/05/22/cascadia-makes-the-cover-of-the-2015-esri-map-book/#comments Fri, 22 May 2015 16:00:43 +0000 abuckley http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/?p=49465 Continue reading ]]> By David McCloskey, Cascadia-Institute.org
(posted by Aileen Buckley, Esri Cartographer)

Cascadia map thumbnail

Chosen to grace the cover of the 2015 Esri Map Book, this map, by the Cascadia Institute, with cartography by Benchmark Maps, shows for the first time the natural integrity of Cascadia as a whole bioregion.

Cascadia is named for the whitewaters that pour down the slopes of her mountains. Home of salmon and rivers, mountains and forests, Cascadia rises as a Great Green Land from the Northeast Pacific Rim.

Cascadia curves from coast to crest—from the Pacific Ocean to the Rocky Mountains and Continental Divide. On the seafloor, Cascadia ranges from the Mendocino Fracture Zone to the Aleutian Trench in the corner of the Gulf of Alaska.

This layered, information-rich, award-winning map shows the distinctive character and context of the wider bioregion in several ways for the first time:

  1. Integrity in Depth: Shows the natural integrity of the whole bioregional fabric across borders (instead of cut-up political space); with accurate scale, features, and mutual proportionality, enabling new insight into in-depth relationships between locations and layers, revealing configurations helping create the distinctive character of Cascadia.
  2. Orientation: Aligns the body of the land and coastline correctly along the 125th meridian (rather than tipping it over awkwardly to fit on the page).
  3. Layers in the FIELD: Building the map through several layers—Terrain, Geology, Seafloor & Coastline, Icefields, Hydrology—Rivers & Lakes, Vegetation, Urban areas, etc.—shows the dynamic FIELD in depth, where composition of map layers follows the way the world works (in contrast to standard geography’s reductionistic “spatiology” of flat container space); here the Bioregional path offers a new approach for in-depth ecological mapping of dynamic weaves creating bioregions as “a place of places.”
  4. Boundaries: Delineates the natural boundaries of Cascadia clearly with accurate locations and identifying labels; especially in terms of the Cascadia Divides and the Continental Divide.
  5. Context: Locates the bioregion as riding the verge of Mountains & the Sea, in relation to the Northeast Pacific Ocean Rim and Cordillera of the North American continent in terms of terrain, rivers, etc.; especially situating Cascadia as one of the 21 major bioregions of Western North America (see Locator Globe).
  6. Land & Sea: Shows the many intimate intertwinings of Land & Sea characteristic of Cascadia, especially its fabulous intricately carved glacial coastline, and sheltered seas amongst islands.
  7. Seafloor: Shows the entire Cascadian seafloor with all its major features clearly delineated, with updated naming from current understanding of marine geophysical processes.
  8. Bathymetric Colors: Calls out the distinctive contour depths in an artistic way so they can be seen.
  9. Terrain: Uses 3-way directional illumination to add dimensional depth to physiographic shaded relief; especially calling out the alternating rhythm of windward and leeward rainshadowed sides.
  10. Hydrology: In tectonically controlled watersheds of the Northern Cordillera, the map shows perennial rivers & lakes as entire drainage networks across borders, including the major continental rivers Cascadia feeds beyond her boundaries.
  11. River Labels: Ranked hierarchically by size in long-term annual average flow volumes (m3s, cfs) so you can grasp at a glance their relative size and significance.
  12. Icefields: Shows the 79 major Icefields of Cascadia—the greatest non-polar Icefields in the world—by geographic section, with proposed names for over half for the first time so they can be better tracked; and shows connections of Icefields to Rivers, as well as to glaciated submarine valleys, canyons, and channels. The Icefields layer provides a key historical baseline in a rapidly melting environment.
  13. Vegetation: The major contribution of the new Cascadia map! Providing a seamless integrative cross-border coverage of Forest Types and other Land Cover in detailed 30 meter resolution; offers a new comprehensive region-wide Forest Framework of 27 major Forest & Woodland assemblages presented in the Legend, with each type’s abbreviation appearing in a color box—e.g. ICH—which is also pinned to its specific locations on the map for ready reference.
  14. Legend: Along with other Land Cover, the contextual legend shows each forest type—e.g. ICH or “Interior Maritime Cedar-Hemlock”—in terms of: (a) its species composition, (b) in order of prevalence, (c) by geographic section—North, Center, South (which can be checked on separate species distribution maps), for (d) both conifer and broadleaf trees. This innovative Legend sets a new standard.
  15. Key: The contextual Legend is linked to a diagnostic Key listing 72 Native Trees of Cascadia organized by Families, translating common-language abbreviations used in the Legend—e.g. WRC for Western Red Cedar—into the scientific Thuja plicata; with the distributions on the map, Legend and Key together offer a new level of comprehensive detail for understanding the composition of Cascadia’s forest assemblages on the ground, for comparison of species occurring across different
    types, as well as shifting floristic geographies, providing another baseline for understanding change.
  16. Color Palette: Reserving color here for Vegetation (rather than conventional elevation tints), this map provides a coherent and grounded color palette for Cascadia in terms of (a) intrinsic color (e.g. cinnamon-orange for Ponderosa Pine), (b) distribution along regional gradients of moisture and temperature, (c) figure/­field contrasts with adjacent colors, and (d) resonance of the overall color field.
    (Dialing in “just so” over sixty mutually-influencing colors so they work together part-and-whole was a Herculean task, and offers a new Bioregionally grounded strategy for color palette design).
  17. Labels: A Region is a House of Names! Over a year was invested in choosing feature names that most significantly express bioregional character and context; organized in 15 different layers, these labels were carefully composed to best articulate a particular feature (e.g. the massif of Mt Logan) and not compete with one another; overall, label names were laid out to settle into the landscape naturally, so landscape remains primary and labels secondary.
  18. Colors of Landscape vs. Labels: Great care was taken in design to keep Vegetation colors and Bathymetric-Seafloor colors vibrant and saturated so the landscape stayed as foreground with labels as background; (reverse of conventional toning down of landscape and vegetation into muted monotones to increase label contrast and readability, so human labels domesticate nature).
  19. Readability: this map was designed to be readable from different distances—from across the room, from four feet away, as well as nose close-up for detailed inspection.
  20. Memory & Depth: Landscape is the holder of memories… As maps tell a story, depth is found in time as well as the layers depicted—so care was taken to include several lost or submerged features such as The Great Cascades of the Columbia, Celilo Falls, and Kettle Falls. Similarly, the caldera of the great Yellowstone HotSpot Volcano is outlined in fiery orange-red magma, etc.
  21. Evocative: The Cascadia map is intended to be evocative as well as informative. A good map opens a window onto a world—a special one opens up that world as well! We want a map with depth, significance, and resonance—so that if you immerse yourself in its life, it opens and flows out around you. We hope this map opens up the world of Cascadia in a new way…

David McCloskey © May 2015
Cascadia-Institute.org

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Take your terrain mapping to new heights http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/2015/05/21/take-your-terrain-mapping-to-new-heights/ http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/2015/05/21/take-your-terrain-mapping-to-new-heights/#comments Fri, 22 May 2015 00:07:21 +0000 Kenneth Field http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/?p=49496 Continue reading ]]> by Kenneth Field, Senior Cartographic Product Engineer

Standard techniques for representing terrain, like a hillshade, are adequate for many applications, but you may want to represent terrain under different lighting conditions, or perhaps use more artistic techniques. In these cases you might need to go a little further than creating a simple hillshade. For this reason (and because we like making tools that extend what we can do!) we’ve built a new toolbox, called Terrain Tools, that helps you take your terrain mapping to new heights.

Cartographic research often develops techniques, models and tools that supplement or extend what you find in software out-of-the-box. They are often difficult to find, hidden in journal articles or cumbersome to implement. We’ve brought together some of these ideas and workflows in the Terrain Tools toolbox that provides capabilities for creating alternative terrain representations in ArcGIS (ArcMap and ArcGIS Pro). Terrain Tools are designed to extend your out-of-the-box toolkit for representing terrain in GIS by encouraging you to be more creative; how to think more critically about design choices; and how to go beyond the defaults.

You can download a zip file from ArcGIS Online that contains the toolbox, sample data, documentation and also an ArcMap Map Document and ArcGIS Pro Project. The Map Document and Pro Project also include results layers so you can see how the tools work before you use them on your own data. It’s important to note that the sample results show the results of running the tools using the default output. They are a starting point and many of the tools give you the flexibility to modify parameters and customize your own output. The documentation is in workshop format that includes discussion of each tool and instructions for use. Because the tools are written in Python they can be viewed, modified and used as a starting point for further development.

Here’s a brief look at some of the output you’ll get from running Terrain Tools.

Terrain Tools incorporates a few previously available tools which were available as models (built originally using ModelBuilder). They have been rewritten and optimized as Python scripts which improves stability and speed of processing. Additionally, a range of new tools have been either written (from the original published algorithms) or optimized as Python scripts from code samples.

One of the highlights of Terrain Tools is the new Cluster Hillshade which provides you with the ability to make spectacularly detailed and artistic hillshades with your own data. This is just about as close as you can get with an automated process to classic hand-drawn hillshading – and all from just a Digital Elevation Model input and a click of a mouse.

The Tanaka method for creating Illuminated Contours and Filled Contours are also included, here depicted one on top of the other:

Thematic maps haven’t been ignored. It’s perfectly possible to run the tools for any input raster (e.g. a statistical surface rather than a DEM) but there’s also a specific 3D Choropleth tool, useful for adding depth to a choropleth, encoding a second piece of information or as a way to see variation within a single class interval:

There’s plenty more tools to explore and, of course, the scripts are entirely open to being customised further. Here’s the full list of what’s included in the Terrain Tools sample:

Multi-Directional Oblique Weighted (MDOW) hillshade
Produces a hillshade that emphasizes oblique illumination on all surfaces by using more than one illumination azimuth

Swiss Hillshade
Builds and then combines several hillshades to give a resulting yellow-blue Swiss hillshade effect

Cluster Hillshades
A suite of three tools that uses k-means clustering to create a seamless change of local lighting conditions throughout the generation of a hillshade to produce stunning results

Sky Models
Builds multiple hillshades with varying azimuth, zenith and intensity of light source and combines them in a weighted output to create hillshades under different lighting conditions with some dramatic effects

Historic Dots
Creates and symbolizes contours using an historic dotted line symbol and modifies the overall appearance by removing contours for low slope angles

Filled Contours
Creates and symbolizes nested polygons such that the boundary lines demarcate areas of equal elevation value

Illuminated Contours
An analytical version of the Tanaka method of symbolizing contours that includes colouring and varying the thickness of illuminated and non-illuminated contour lines

Hachures
Creates an output that illustrates three-dimensional topography on a two dimensional map using hachures that symbolize slope and aspect

Shadow lines
An artistic drawing method in which lines of variable thickness and orientation approximate tonal variations associated with shading and shadowing

Chromastereoscopic tinting
A technique that encodes depth values by colour and which, when viewed through glasses that contain minute prisms, gives a holographic 3D view of the data. Glasses not included!

3D Choropleth
Breathes life into the choropleth mapping technique by building multiple hillshades that emphasize differences across the statistical surface

We’re indebted to the assistance of a number of key researchers who’ve assisted in the development of these tools. You’ll find references and links to their original work in the documentation and the tool help.

Get the tools here via ArcGIS Online.

We hope you enjoy using these tools whether you’re looking for a more advanced hillshade or something a little more artistic. Use them as a starting point for inspiration and share your efforts!

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How to Contribute Maps to the Living Atlas of the World http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/2015/05/19/how-to-contribute-maps-to-the-living-atlas-of-the-world/ http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/2015/05/19/how-to-contribute-maps-to-the-living-atlas-of-the-world/#comments Tue, 19 May 2015 17:00:05 +0000 Jim Herries http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/?p=49164 Continue reading ]]> In this blog, you will see how to contribute your maps, apps, Story Maps, scenes and layers to the Living Atlas of the World. The focus is on how to use the new “contributor app” for the Living Atlas of the World.

There are two useful things the contributor app does for you and your ArcGIS Online items. First, it gives each item a “score” based on your item’s key characteristics. Second, if your item meets a minimum score of 80 out of 100 possible points, you can nominate your item for review and possible inclusion in the Living Atlas.

A great way to start is to have a look around the Living Atlas of the World, to get a sense of what it includes. You likely will find content relating to your interests; or, perhaps you notice your interests are under-represented, and you’d like to contribute something.

The contributor app is available to review the content you have created in ArcGIS Online, and, when ready, nominate it to be added to the Living Atlas of the World. Review the general steps below, or watch this 2 minute video.

How To Video

Start at http://livingatlas.arcgis.com and log in with your ArcGIS Online account.

After you log in, the Contributor app shows a selection of items that you own in ArcGIS Online. Things that can be nominated for use in the Living Atlas are visible.

The list is sorted by date last edited, with the most recently edited items listed first. Other sort options are available.

You can filter the list, to show only web maps, for example. You can also enter a search term term to quickly find an item.

Score Your Item

After you log into the Living Atlas Contributor app, click on a item’s title to view the item’s score.

Even if you don’t plan to nominate an item for the Living Atlas, it’s useful to see how its key characteristics score. Every item benefits from good documentation.

The score provides a simple comparison of your item’s key characteristics against a set of minimum standards found in the vast majority of Living Atlas items. For example, a web map’s key characteristics include:

  • title
  • summary
  • description
  • thumbnail
  • credits
  • use and constraints
  • tags
  • drawing speed
  • popups
  • item owner’s profile

Improve Your Score

The five tabs located just below the score let you examine, and edit, your item’s key characteristics. Click on a tab to see individual scores for each key characteristic.

As an example, most items in the Living Atlas use at least two words in their title. If your item has a one-word title, the Contributor app alerts you to this condition, and offers guidance on best practices, and specifics on how to improve the score.

Roll your mouse over the “i” button to see Guidance and Scoring notes for each characteristic.

To edit a key characteristic, click the Edit button at right. Make your changes and hit Save. This is the same as editing the item directly in ArcGIS Online’s item page. Note how the score changes after you hit Save.

Continue to the other tabs to review the guidance and scoring for each characteristic.

If you prefer to make your edits in the ArcGIS Online page, click the link just below the item’s thumbnail. After you complete your edits there, come back to the Contributor app, and refresh the browser’s tab to see an updated score.

Set Your Tags

Items appearing in the Living Atlas must use one tag from the special tags listed on the left side. If you see an obvious fit, hit the Edit button at right, then choose the tag on the left side. Clicking on a tag on the left side may add a second “parent” tag as well. Hit Save.

Save additional tags to your item as needed. Your tags do not need to duplicate words in your title or description – all the words in the title and description are already used in Search operations. For example, a map titled “Population Density” might make good use of tags “people” and “crowding” for anyone who searches using those terms. “Population” and “Density” are already in the title.

Update Your Profile

People want to know where an item came from, who created it, who to contact with questions. Follow the guidance (hover over the little “i” button) to maximize your profile score. Good news: edit this once, and it improves the score for every item you own.

Ready to Nominate?

As soon as your score is 80 or higher, you can nominate your item. Hit “Nominate” and the Contributor app records your nomination so that a Living Atlas curator can follow up with you. Your item now shows a status of “Nominated.”

Now that your item is nominated, all further communication will now take place over email.

A Living Atlas curator will see your item.  He or she will write up some observations and, if needed, suggestions for the item’s key characteristics. When ready, the curator will email those observations/suggestions to you, the owner of the item.

Review the observations and suggestions, and make any changes you agree with. For any suggestions you disagree with, please communicate that back to the curator over email. Once you and the curator are in agreement that an item is suitable for the Living Atlas, the curator will “Accept” the item for inclusion in the Living Atlas.

Things to know

  • The app is best viewed in a modern browser on a laptop or PC: Chrome and Firefox preferred. Safari works in the latest versions. We hope to support recent versions of Internet Explorer in the future.
  • The detection of custom popups is available for web maps only. We will continue to improve the detection and scoring rules for popups in all types of items. Suggestions and examples are welcome.
  • Map draw speed is based on the initial extent saved in the web map or layer. Try different extents in your web map to maximize initial draw speed. This helps not only your score, but also anyone viewing your web map.
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Civilian Topographic Map Released http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/2015/05/15/civilian-topographic-map-released/ http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/2015/05/15/civilian-topographic-map-released/#comments Fri, 15 May 2015 17:36:29 +0000 ProductionMappingTeam http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/?p=49455 Continue reading ]]> The Civilian Topographic Map (CTM) is designed to allow you to easily create civilian style 25K topographic data and maps using Esri Production Mapping.  The first release of CTM includes a geodatabase data model as well as sample configurations for editing, quality assurance, and cartography for creating 1:25000 scale civilian style topographic maps.

You can adopt the CTM data model holistically and implement all configuration rules rapidly, easily, and repeatedly or you can use these files as a sample to implement this type of configuration with a different data model.  The CTM configuration provided can also be configured as a sample map product for Product on Demand (POD).  For more information on POD see the following POD GitHub Repro:  https://github.com/Esri/product-on-demand/releases.

CTM can be accessed on GitHub:  https://github.com/Esri/CTM/releases

Requirements:

  • ArcGIS for Desktop 10.3
  • Esri Production Mapping 10.3
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Living Atlas of the World Updates Improve the World Topographic Map http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/2015/05/14/release08may132015/ http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/2015/05/14/release08may132015/#comments Fri, 15 May 2015 02:30:54 +0000 Shane Matthews http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/?p=49299 Continue reading ]]>

ArcGIS Online has been refreshed with new and updated content to Esri’s Basemaps. The user community has improved the World Topographic Map. We appreciate our users and partners who are supporting the Living Atlas of the World by contributing useful information and applying this content to enhance their communities. You can join this growing community of contributors by sharing your data with Community Maps.  

Topographic Map Updates

This update incorporates contributions from select locations in Europe to include the Country of Iceland and Hamburg, Germany and North America which includes cities, counties, a national park and points in the Caribbean. View this presentation for a tour of the new and updated content in the World Topographic Map.

Let’s welcome our newest contributors.

Country of Iceland (Topo 1:72k to 1:1k)

Hamburg, Germany (Topo 1:9k to1:1k)

Great Smoky Mountains National Park, TN (Topo 1:9k to 1:1k)

State of North Dakota (Topo 1:9k to 1:1k)

United States Virgin Islands  (Topo 1:9k to 1:1k)

Clark County, WA (Topo 1:9k to 1:1k)

We would also like to thank those communities that have provided updates for this release.

Here’s a list of all the community contributors for this release:

World Topographic Map

Community 

Community Maps Newsletter: Stay updated on program news, tips and tricks, user success stories, training events, and participant contributions by subscribing to the Community Maps Newsletter. You can have the newsletter sent right to your inbox by subscribing here.

Training: Additional offerings of the well-received Preparing Data for Community Maps Workshop have been added to the schedule! The workshops are scheduled on different days and times in an effort to accommodate multiple users. This allows you to register for the workshop that best fits your schedule. You must register if you plan on attending one of these workshops, click below for details.

More Preparing Data Workshops Added to the Calendar

Share your story: How has contributing to the Living Atlas Community benefited your organization? Has your participation helped meet a particular challenge? Email us at communitymaps@esri.com so we can promote your success.

Share your data: Wish to join the growing community of Community Maps contributors?  Contributing to Esri Community Maps is easy. Just visit Community Maps for an overview and visit the Community Maps Contribution Process page for the details.

Contributions and Feedback

These contributions were made through the Community Maps Program.

For more information visit the Community Maps Program Resource Center.

The service was updated on the following servers: services.arcgisonline.com and server.arcgisonline.com. If you have previously used the World_Topo_Map, you may need to clear your cache in order to see the updates.

If you have feedback on content, try our Topographic Map Feedback web map.

If you have other feedback or comments, please post them to the ArcGIS Online Discussion Group and the Living Atlas Discussion Group on GeoNet.

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Smart Mapping Part 4: Pairing Data with Maps http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/2015/05/12/smart-mapping-part-4-pairing-data-with-maps/ http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/2015/05/12/smart-mapping-part-4-pairing-data-with-maps/#comments Tue, 12 May 2015 16:20:03 +0000 Mark Harrower http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/?p=49332 Continue reading ]]> There are many kinds of thematic maps and each is highly flexible in its design. This variety is a blessing because we can tell a seemingly endless number of geographic stories. It is also a curse because thematic cartography is so open-ended and dozens of decisions may have no single, obvious answer: should I use color ramps or proportional sizes? If size, which shape? How much generalization to apply? What about data classification?  Smart Mapping is designed to change all of that.

We infuse cartographic expertise directly into the ArcGIS workflow. For example, in ArcGIS Online if you choose ‘Change Style’ from your layer menu options you will see a list of drawing styles smart mapping considers suitable for the chosen attribute. Importantly, this list updates as the data you select changes – it is a live list that pairs data to the appropriate kinds of maps for those data. We all work faster when illogical or weak choices are eliminated.

A live gallery of mapping options (left side) seamlessly updates based on properties of your data: Point, line and area data each have their own choices, as do numeric and categorical data.

There are also important differences based on the geometry type of your layer.  What Smart Mapping chooses is based on the following rules:

  • Just Locations: If no attribute is selected (location only) you have the choice of the ‘Location (Single symbol)’ drawing style and in case of point layers also the ‘Heat Map’ drawing style. It will default to the Location drawing style.
  • Numeric Data: If the attribute contains number values you have the choice of ‘Counts and Amounts (Size)’, ‘Counts and Amounts (Color)’, in case of point layers ‘Heat Map’, ‘Location (Single symbol)’, and ‘Types (Unique symbols)’. If your layer contains polygons and your attribute contains decimal values it will default to the Color drawing style, otherwise it will default to the Size drawing style.
  • Categorical Data: If the attribute contains string values you have the choice of ‘Types (Unique symbols)’, in case of point layers ‘Heat Map’, and ‘Location (Single symbol)’. It will default to the Types drawing style.
  • Dates: If your layer is based on a feature collection and you choose an attribute containing dates you have the choice of ‘Location (Single symbol)’, ‘Types (Unique symbols)’, and in case of point layers ‘Heat Map’. It will default to the Location drawing style.
  • Though, independent of the type of attribute, if your layer has value domains setup on the attribute you chose it will default to the Type drawing style.

By offering the most popular choices and eliminating cartographically unwise options, we have streamlined the authoring workflow. You can click the SELECT button at any time to change it. Smart mapping will calculate suitable settings for your new drawing style. We want to encourage you to try new mapping ideas, to feel confident moving beyond the defaults of the software, and to create beautiful maps.

Co-written with Adelheid Freitag, ArcGIS Online development team

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Visualizing Barcelona Spain using Imagery http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/2015/05/11/visualizing-barcelona-spain-using-imagery/ http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/2015/05/11/visualizing-barcelona-spain-using-imagery/#comments Mon, 11 May 2015 23:50:03 +0000 Renee Brandt http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/?p=49349 Continue reading ]]> Sometimes it’s fun to take a virtual vacation using imagery to explore new places from the comfort of your home, a Viewcation.  With the availability of high resolution imagery, fast computers and better performing internet networks this is possible for everyone.  In fact, today’s imagery is so sharp and clear, that I’ll typically pull up the imagery for places I’m going to visit to get the lay of the land before visiting.

One place that really struck me as unique from the air was Barcelona, Spain.  I took a real vacation there last year.  If you get the chance to visit, try out one of the bus tours that take you around the city.   It is a great way to see a lot of sites, without trying to figure out the driving, plus you’ll see things that interest you and weren’t even on your list of sites to visit.  Last year when I visited Spain, we did just that, and took the two day city tour, so we could hop on and off.  During the tour, the guide repeatedly mentioned how the old town was a mishmash of buildings and streets going in every direction without a plan, yet the newer part of town was laid out concisely using a square / rectangular / linear pattern.

If you’ve ever walked around the old town, you probably remember the little alleyways, hidden courtyards, intimate restaurants, and older architecture.  Wandering aimlessly while on vacation is actually one of the things I love to do, and you can do that for days in old town.  So I was intrigued with the tour operators’ comment.  Could I actually see the difference between old town and new town using imagery?  When I returned to my hotel room that night, I pulled up ArcGIS Online to look at the imagery for Barcelona, and what a surprise.  I’ve never seen such a clear distinction in old / new areas than in Barcelona.  Take a look!

Barcelona Spain with both the older and newer parts of town visible.

Can you see the difference?  In the older part of town, you can see the confusion of buildings and streets.  You can also see the newer part of Barcelona and how uniform everything is.  From ground level, you don’t realize that the buildings are all designed exactly the same and that many of them have courtyards in the middle.  Here is a zoomed in image so you can see more details.

Intersection of old and new.

I was so fascinated with how the newer part of the city was conceptualized and designed, that I thought I’d research it to see if there was any additional information available.  After a few search attempts, I discovered that Spanish urban planner Ildefonso Cerdá y Suñer1 is credited as the driving force behind the design.  You learn reading his short biography in Wikipedia that with his new design, he focused on more than just buildings…he took into consideration sunlight, natural lighting, ventilation, traffic, sanitation and transportation, as well as the need for public and private gardens and green space.  Here is a close up of some of the buildings constructed following his guidelines.  Up close, you can tell that the buildings aren’t perfect rectangles, in fact, all corners are angled making them octagons.  This was on purpose.  The angled corners allowed the streets to broaden at every intersection making for greater visibility, and fluid traffic in all directions2.  Such an innovative design, taking into account the way people want to live and move around.

Newer part of town with courtyards, parks and octagon shaped buildings.

Well, that was funny.  I started this blog to share my Barcelona Viewcation experience, and by the end I have two sources quoted and conducted a mini-research project. LOL.  Hopefully you found it as interesting as I did, and perhaps learned a little about the design of Barcelona and urban planning in general.  By the way, in case you were wondering, I love old town Barcelona the best and that is where I typically stay.

Esrigram image of the day

If you have been to an interesting place where the imagery tells a different story than the ground view, let me know.  I’d love to take a Viewcation there!

  1.  Ildefons Cerdà. (2015, May 4). In Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. Retrieved 22:19, May 11, 2015, from http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Ildefons_Cerd%C3%A0&oldid=660780825
  2. The Peculiar Architecture And Design of Eixample, Barcelona, (2013, July 06).  On Amusing Planet. Retrieved 20:19, May 11, 2015, from http://www.amusingplanet.com/2013/07/the-peculiar-architecture-and-design-of.html
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Want Landsat? Access all the Band Combinations Online http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/2015/05/06/want-landsat-access-all-the-band-combinations-online/ http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/2015/05/06/want-landsat-access-all-the-band-combinations-online/#comments Wed, 06 May 2015 22:16:38 +0000 Renee Brandt http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/?p=49254 Continue reading ]]> One of the advantages to working at Esri is the access to so many people resources to help answer questions.  The other day, I was writing a blog about the new Landsat 8 imagery available through ArcGIS Online.  I wanted to take a few screenshots, so I opened the map component in ArcGIS Online and did a search for Landsat layers.  While this returned a lot of options, I became a bit discouraged because there were only three Landsat 8 layers returned…Landsat 8 Views, Landsat 8 Panchromatic and Landsat 8 PanSharpened.

You may be familiar with the older Landsat services in ArcGIS Online and you can see them in the graphic below.  They are separated by years, and different common band combinations, like False Color, Vegetation Analysis, Land / Water Boundary, etc.  I figured I must have done something wrong in my search, so I tried Landsat8 and Landsat 8, but still only three Esri created options were returned.  I picked one, the Landsat 8 Views, so I could see what that provided me.  Still no luck finding all the different bands, I decided to place a call to the Imagery product manager.

I explained my dilemma, I wanted to write a story about the different Landsat 8 band combinations, but I couldn’t figure out how to access them.  Simple, he said.  After you add the ‘Landsat 8 Views’ layer to your map, click the ‘drop down’ arrow and select ‘Image Display’.

Sure enough, a new option I hadn’t seen before ‘Imagery Display’ appeared…and two other options that I’ve never explored…’Image Display Order’ and ‘Imagery Quality’.

I selected ‘Image Display’ and a new window appears with the option to select different bands to display (under the word ‘Renderer’).  Selecting this drop down enables you to pick from multiple common band combinations, NDVI and Normalized Difference Moisture Index.  The first option in the list is called ‘User Defined Renderer’.  This option enables you to specify any Landsat 8 band combination you want and apply contrast enhancements to improve the image display.

Needless to say, I played with multiple band combinations to see how it affected what I saw in the Landsat imagery on my map.

Now you may thing this next paragraph is a little Esri marketing, but I have to share what I thought was the coolest thing with this.  If you follow Esri marketing for our imagery products, you’ve heard Esri say over and over that we have on the fly processing of imagery.  What does that really mean?  Well, we use ArcGIS imagery technology to serve the imagery layers in ArcGIS Online, including Landsat.  The IT manager for the image services configured the ‘on the fly’ processing to share out all the different band combinations for new imagery as soon as it is available.  They did this once, in the initial configuration for the Landsat data.  After that, as soon as new Landsat 8 imagery is received (which happens daily), the administrator simply adds it to the existing repository of Landsat imagery, and instantly the newer imagery and all the band combinations are available to anyone who needs them.  Have you ever tried to manage massive quantities of data that is constantly updating and changing while you have stakeholders who want to use it immediately?  If you have, then you already know why having these capabilities are essential!

The ‘Image Display’, ‘Image Display Order’ and ‘Image Quality’ options are available for all imagery served through Esri as an image service, which includes Landsat, NAIP, Elevation data, MDA NaturalVue and MDA BaseVue products.   I don’t think we meant to keep this a secret, so I hope you discovered these options prior to my post, but if not, try them out!

Here is a link to another blog post which lists common Landsat 8 band combinations you may want to try out, and what each band represents.

Check out this Landsat 8 image on our Esrigram account using bands 7,6,5.

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Updates to the Living Atlas of the World Improve the World Topographic Map http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/2015/05/06/release07_042715/ http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/2015/05/06/release07_042715/#comments Wed, 06 May 2015 16:30:14 +0000 Shane Matthews http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/?p=48779 Continue reading ]]>

ArcGIS Online has been refreshed with new and updated content to Esri’s Basemaps. The user community has improved the World Topographic Map by adding new content for Berlin, Germany and new and updated content for cities, counties, national parks and universities in the United States. We appreciate our users and partners who are supporting the Living Atlas of the World by contributing useful information and applying this content to enhance their communities. You can join this growing community of contributors by sharing your data with Community Maps.  

Topographic Map Updates & Applied Use of Living Atlas Content

Let’s start with our new contributors.

Berlin, Germany (Topo 1:9k to 1:1k)

This scene highlights topographic map layers for Berlin, Germany available in ArcGIS to support your work in 3D. Use these layers in conjunction with your own layers to create new scenes focused on a specific topic or area of interest to you.

Grand Junction, CO (Topo 1:9k to 1:1k)

New content provided by the city will improve this web map showing the boundary of the Downtown Development Authority districts that support and facilitate economic development efforts and enhance the vitality of the Downtown community.

McKinney, TX (Topo 1:9k to 1:1k)

Richardson, TX (Topo 1:9k to1:1k)

Napa County, CA (Topo 1:9k to 1:1k)

Marin County, CA (Topo 1:9k to 1:1k)

Southern Utah University, UT (Topo 1:9k to 1:1k)

We would also like to thank those communities that have provided updates for this release.

View this presentation for a tour of the new and updated content in the World Topographic Map.

Here’s a list of all the community contributors for this release:

World Topographic Map

Community 

Community Maps Newsletter: Stay updated on program news, tips and tricks, user success stories, training events, and participant contributions by subscribing to the Community Maps Newsletter. You can have the newsletter sent right to your inbox by subscribing here.

Training: Additional offerings of the well-received Preparing Data for Community Maps Workshop have been added to the schedule! The workshops are scheduled on different days and times in an effort to accommodate multiple users. This allows you to register for the workshop that best fits your schedule. You MUST register if you plan on attending one of these workshops, click below for details.

More Preparing Data Workshops Added to the Calendar

Share your story: How has contributing to the Living Atlas Community benefited your organization? Has your participation helped meet a particular challenge? Email us at communitymaps@esri.com so we can promote your success.

Share your data: Wish to join the growing community of Community Maps contributors?  Contributing to Esri Community Maps is easy. Just visit Community Maps for an overview and visit the Community Maps Contribution Process page for the details.

Contributions and Feedback

These contributions were made through the Community Maps Program.

For more information visit the Community Maps Program Resource Center.

The service was updated on the following servers: services.arcgisonline.com and server.arcgisonline.com. If you have previously used the World_Topo_Map, you may need to clear your cache in order to see the updates.

If you have feedback on content, try our Topographic Map Feedback web map.

If you have other feedback or comments, please post them to the ArcGIS Online Discussion Group and the Living Atlas Discussion Group on GeoNet.

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Web AppBuilder for ArcGIS – Live Sites Showcase http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/2015/05/01/web-appbuilder-for-arcgis-live-sites-showcase/ http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/2015/05/01/web-appbuilder-for-arcgis-live-sites-showcase/#comments Fri, 01 May 2015 15:46:59 +0000 Law http://blogs.esri.com/esri/arcgis/?p=48996 Continue reading ]]> There’s been a lot of excitement around Web AppBuilder, because it enables you to create new custom web mapping applications in an intuitive, easy to use, WYSIWYG wizard-like environment. You can create apps that run on any device without having to write code. But if you are a developer, you can extend its capabilities using the ArcGIS API for JavaScript.

We’re interested in seeing and promoting all the cool web apps that the Web AppBuilder user community have made, so we’ve created a new ArcGIS Online group called Web AppBuilder for ArcGIS – Live Sites Showcase. The purpose of this group is to collect and highlight live sites that were built using Web AppBuilder for ArcGIS, both ‘out of the box’ using the builder and with custom functionality.

The intent is to showcase the many different use cases that Web AppBuilder for ArcGIS can address, as well as help spark ideas for other users. We would love to see your apps! Please share your app and join the growing Web AppBuilder community!!!

Organizations and individual users are welcome to promote their web apps built on Web AppBuilder for ArcGIS in this group.

If you have a web app that you would like added to this group, please contact Derek Law (dlaw@esri.com).

Sincerely,
The Web AppBuilder for ArcGIS Dev team

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