GIS

Get some REST!

Get some REST!

With the GIS industry acceptance of ArcGIS Enterprise and Online (whether you like it or not) as a location for data sharing and display. We at Cloudpoint Geographics regularly grab REST endpoint of important services that are publicly facing and put them on out internal websites. As well we have an ongoing collection of ArcGIS Online Organizations homepages an Open Data sites as we come across them.

Spring Clean Your Web Apps With Group Layer Lists in Web AppBuilder

Spring Clean Your Web Apps With Group Layer Lists in Web AppBuilder

Esri plans to implement group layers for ArcGIS Online feature services in the future, but until then, here is an alternate method to clean-up content in a web app by configuring Group Layer Lists to organize layers in Web AppBuilder.

Help for the Helpers: NG911 GIS Grants

Help for the Helpers: NG911 GIS Grants

Chances are you or someone you know has used 9-1-1 in a life-threatening situation. It has happened in my family. All ended well because of an incredible number of caring people who are really good at their jobs. I got to meet some of them and am forever grateful for them. But I will never meet the person who was there at the beginning, the 9-1-1 dispatcher. And until I started working on 911 GIS data projects, I never gave the technology behind this system a second thought. Many times someone is able to give the location of the incident or person in distress. But what if something goes wrong during the phone call? Would the dispatcher have the tools to determine the person’s location when calling from a cell phone and quickly send the appropriate services? If a person is able to text but not speak would she be able to do so? This is a portion of what Next Generation 911 (NG9-1-1) can do for us.

Coming Soon...Esri Introduces New ArcGIS User Types

Coming Soon...Esri Introduces New ArcGIS User Types

Esri will migrate User Levels to ArcGIS User Types in the next ArcGIS Online release in December 2018. The User Types will provide ArcGIS Users a focused set of capabilities and apps to accomplish business needs in their ArcGIS Organization.

Are You ArcGIS Pro-Ready? Check Your System Settings.

Are You ArcGIS Pro-Ready? Check Your System Settings.

Are you ArcGIS Pro-ready? System Requirements Lab has provided a tool (available here or at the system requirements page for ArcGIS Pro)  that produces a detailed report in a matter of seconds showing how your system stacks up to the minimum and recommended requirements for running ArcGIS Pro. Please watch this video for more information on how you can easily check your system requirements for Pro.

Building a Hoops Tracker App with ArcGIS Solutions is a Three-Point Play

Building a Hoops Tracker App with ArcGIS Solutions is a Three-Point Play

Hoops Tracker is a Esri Story Map that displays information for the 2018 Class 1A and 2A Boys Basketball Tournaments in separate web mapping applications, paired with a view of IHSA's interactive ScoreZone web page and other IHSA links.

Shadow IT & Shadow GIS

Shadow IT & Shadow GIS

There are two meanings here: 1. You might be building your GIS as Shadow IT, know the pitfalls and realities. 2. Beware your GIS 'clients' may be building Shadow GIS underneath you. 

Shadow IT is a real thing. It's talked about at conferences and even has a Wikipedia page. Essentially, it is when 'unofficial' tech infrastructure is built in parallel to the official IT department; sometimes sanctioned, sometimes not. GIS could exist as a Shadow IT in both positive and negative way

4 Ways to Enhance Your Survey Forms with Survey123 Connect for ArcGIS

 4 Ways to Enhance Your Survey Forms with Survey123 Connect for ArcGIS

Survey123 Connect for ArcGIS is a desktop tool that allows you to create and publish survey forms to ArcGIS for your data collection needs. Signing in with your ArcGIS Online credentials connects Survey123 Connect to your organization, and once you create a survey, the form and feature service are stored in ArcGIS Online. The survey form can be accessed and edited in the Survey123 for ArcGIS mobile app, or managed through the Survey123 for ArcGIS website. There are hundreds of ways to enhance your survey forms; here are a chosen few to check out.

Tracking your projects with Esri's Operations Dashboard For ArcGIS

Tracking your projects with Esri's Operations Dashboard For ArcGIS

Given the wide scope of work that GIS professionals complete, it's important for organizations to stay on top of the progress of various projects that are going on. No tool allows you to do this better than the Operations Dashboard application from Esri. The Operations Dashboard allows organizations the ability to monitor work, track field work crews, and view the status of tasks related to specific projects.

Editing Related Records in Collector for ArcGIS

Editing Related Records in Collector for ArcGIS

Good relationships are important in Business, Sports, Personal Life...in anything, really. Good relationships are important with GIS data as well. Let's take a look at how relationship classes and related data can aid in the GIS data collection process.

A client from a Water Reclamation Department uses the Collector for ArcGIS app to edit Sanitary Sewer Network data. They requested additional attributes for a Lift Stations layer, as well as the ability to add multiple Pumps to each Lift Station. The solution to this request is a related table in a feature service that allows for editing via the Collector app. This is an overview of the process.

Mapping of a runner.

Mapping of a runner.

Earlier in my life, I never ran. I mean from bears, sure, probably I would have. I occasionally played a round-ball-type sport that required moving arms or legs quickly. If I had to actually run, I hated every second and  would never consider running for health. Well, circumstances change and different things matter as you approach mid-life. Two years ago I found...

5 Ways to Add a Finishing Touch to Your WAB App

5 Ways to Add a Finishing Touch to Your WAB App

The Web Map and Widgets are the foundation of creating apps in Web AppBuilder (WAB), but there are customizations you can make to add a finishing touch to your app and make it unique.

Extend your Apps with Custom Widgets in Web AppBuilder

Extend your Apps with Custom Widgets in Web AppBuilder

Cloudpoint has successfully upgraded a number of Flex mapping applications to Javascript applications in the past year using Web AppBuilder (WAB). Some of the components that make these apps stand out are widgets that improve the user experience with the app. . Esri packages a number of basic widgets in WAB, but some developers have designed custom widgets that extend the functionality of these applications. A number of these custom widgets were available in the Flex apps and we wanted to honor our client's wishes to provide the same tools and functionality. Here we highlight a few of the custom widgets we configured for our clients.

All Moved In (Guest Writer)

Below you'll find an article in our local paper from Journalist Cheryl Wolfe of the Pantagraph papers in Bloomington, Illinois. She did a fantastic job and we wanted to include her article in our blog as a "Thanks!". 

(Reprinted with Permission)

ALL MOVED IN--Employees at Cloudpoint Geographic, Inc. are: (left to right) Jodi Hoffman, Paul Stephenson, Micah Williamson, Joe Christian, Matt Junker, Tyler Severson, and Jonathan Hodel

ALL MOVED IN--Employees at Cloudpoint Geographic, Inc. are: (left to right) Jodi Hoffman, Paul Stephenson, Micah Williamson, Joe Christian, Matt Junker, Tyler Severson, and Jonathan Hodel

 

 Cloudpoint Geographics moves to new office


Hodel plans open house
CHERYL WOLFE

cwolfe@mtco.com

 ROANOKE—These days, Jon Hodel often has his head in the clouds and is always thinking higher.

When office space for his growing business, Cloudpoint Geographics, Inc. got too small, Hodel started looking for something bigger. He found it, just a block away in the building that formerly housed Dr. Michael Meier’s dental office.

A building with several smaller rooms might not fit the needs of most businesses, but for Hodel and his employees, it was literally a godsend.

“This office has been a perfect fit for us,” Hodel said of the building. “The Lord provided for us; we couldn’t have asked for a better fit.”

Hodel said it was getting crowded in his old office on Main Street, but now all employees have their own space, in addition to a conference room and a kitchenette. And, the move kept Hodel’s business in his hometown, just where he wants it to be. There was a time when Hodel was thinking of re-locating to another town because he could not get enough high speed Internet service in Roanoke, a service that is vital to his business. But he recently found a way to get by with the service in place.

 “We don’t have fiber yet due to the cost, but we’re using the Amazon cloud, and we’re getting by for now,” Hodel said. “We have seen increased efficiency, and cost savings came into play.”

Most people don’t really understand the kind of work Hodel does unless they are very technologically savvy. Hodel is a licensed professional engineer and certified Geographic Information System (GIS) professional. His business started with him, by himself in an office with a laptop, and grew to where it is today with one part-time and five full-time employees. Their work includes GIS mapping for government utilities and public works and asset management, among other projects. Simply put, they make maps, Hodel said. But the maps are not simple.

GIS maps are detailed and made using satellite technology. They allow clients to visualize, question, analyze and interpret data to better understand patterns and trends, as well as what is happening in geographic space. They are also valuable in creating and maintaining more accurate records.

There is a growing interest and awareness of the economic value of GIS. It can be used to manage assets, such as the life expectancy of streetlights or to schedule garbage truck routes to maximize efficiency in fuel and labor. Cloudpoint performs both small jobs and big ones, like a utility mapping job in Mendota that has taken all summer.

These descriptions are only a fraction of the work that Cloudpoint is capable of doing, and they barely scratch the surface of what will be available in the future. Hodel said drones will be used as a powerful commercial tool in the future pinpointing a number of things, from agriculture applications to other commercial uses. He plans to be a part of that technology as it is implemented.

”We’re really excited about the new technology drones will bring,” Hodel said. “It’s fascinating. I really enjoy new things. It’s the engineer coming out in me.”

Hodel said he hopes to hire a licensed pilot to work with drones in the future to create another arm of his business.

The work of Cloudpoint Geographics is far above most of the public’s head, so getting his name out and helping others learn about the services he provides to gain new business is sometimes challenging.

“We find we do a lot of door knocking, and use our web presence,” Hodel said. “Most of our business comes from referrals or face-to-face marketing.”

Hodel wants to do a little face-to-face marketing with the people of Roanoke where he has lived most of his life. He has invited them to come see his new office during an Open House, on Friday, Oct. 2, from 4-6 p.m. He will be glad to explain some of the fascinating aspects of his work to anyone who is interested. And, he wants everyone to know how much he enjoys his new office in Roanoke.

“We’re really happy to be here,” Hodel said.

FalseNorthing Blog Re-Visit: Open Source Elite

I use to have a personal Blog (Like 90% of Westerners) that I maintained regularly with rants and revelations. This post is a copy from an Archive of that blog dated Feb 3, 2012. It was written during my capacity as GIS Manager at Peoria County but the sentiments are the same. 


Watch out! The gloves are coming off!

Old boxing gloves to fight against Open Source GIS elitism. 

I’m really tired of GIS Professionals who brazenly tout their own wares, talents and data while demonizing much ((Much) MUCH) larger companies for selling theirs. Listen, It’s awesome and cool that you do what you do for our Geospatial Industry. I won’t deny there is a little part of me who sorely wishes I was like you; on my own, working when I want, where I want… but please, ease off the hate.

You can use all the Open Source software you want, it’s cool, really. I use some myself. But please don’t make those of use who primarily use Esri products out to look like drooling buffoons blindly paying maintenance and scarfing down every crumb off Redland’s table. I imagine a select few of you sipping on imported wine laughing through their nose about some idiot who uses ArcMap at a small county to update the zoning shapefile (Esri’s formerly proprietary file-type which they opened up). “Ah-ha, Ah-ha. and he actually continues to pay maintenance!” “Har-har. Doesn’t he know he should put that into a fusion table and edit with Q-GIS then replicate to PostgreSQL for enterprise distribution?!? -For Free*?! What a buffoon!”

Our industry must have balance, competition and choices to thrive. I’m cool with Open Source GIS having a strong community around it. Sometimes I even feel like part of that community. I really like the philosophy and idealism behind it. What gets under my skin is the constant railing against certain companies just because they’ve been successful or they have a different business model. Or, when that venom is directed at the purchasers of aforementioned proprietary software. It makes me feel like I don’t ever want to work with/at/for certain open source elitist-GIS Consultants. It is simply unprofessional. But then again, We’re an Esri shop. So, I probably won’t have to.

Ahhhhhh. There I feel better.


HA! I used to be funny!

Where is rain most needed? 2012 Illinois Drought Map

Here is a recent map of the severity of the current drought in Illinois.  This map shows the lack of rainfall throughout the state for the month of June.  We are currently obtaining additional data for the entire summer that will provide greater insight as to the hardest hit areas.  Contact us for more details!

Visit us at www.cloudpointgeo.com

Introducing Cloudpoint's latest edition!

Cloudpoint Geographics is pleased to announce the hiring of Matthew Dondanville to the position of GIS Technician!  Matt will be filling an important role in performing GPS mapping and data collection and providing client services involving GIS training and consultation.  He comes as a highly regarded graduate from Grand Valley State University in Allendale, MI with strong technical skills involving CAD and GIS applications.  Matt plans to pursue a Master's degree in GIS through the online program at Penn State University and his GISP certificate soon thereafter.  Welcome aboard Matt!Stay connected with Matt: Cloudpoint is always looking for talented people.  Send your resume to jhodel@cloudpointgeo.com if you are interested in joining our team!

Cloudpoint acquires ArcGIS Server 10.....

We have recently signed up for an

AWS (Amazon Web Services)

account and setup

ArcGIS Server on an EC2 instance

.  To describe it in non-technical terms, we are using Amazon Web Services as a "server" instead of buying our own.  It's not only less direct overhead but also allows for scalability (only use what we need).  To learn more about this visit the

AWS website

.  This means Cloudpoint will be looking to offer a way for our clients to follow the progress of their mapping projects live and up-to-date as they are being completed.  It will also allow us to build some customized applications and have a method for field testing them before deployment.  Many of our clients are looking for ways to better manage their infrastructure and utility assets by way of a centralized GIS and we are working hard to bring the right solutions at an affordable price.  Also we have been telling you about our new website and new look that will be rolling out this summer.  Here is a sneak peak at our new logo...

Visit us at www.cloudpointgeo.com