ArcGIS Online

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.

Extend a Hand: Symbolizing Related Data in ArcGIS Online is Within Reach

Extend a Hand: Symbolizing Related Data in ArcGIS Online is Within Reach

A very popular and enduring request of the ArcGIS Online user community has been to have the ability to symbolize features based on data that’s stored as a related record. Well, Esri has listened- and released in a June 2018 update to ArcGIS Online the ability to use related records data like never before. We now have the ability to symbolize and manipulate our data in ways that we previously limited.

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.

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.

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.

1,874 Mile Road Trip Tools

1,874 Mile Road Trip Tools

Last Week, I (Micah) drove Paul's Ford Focus out to Carson City, Nevada while he drove his Ranger truck and Smoky the Cat. This was an easy drive, directionally speaking. Interstate 80 goes all the way to Reno Nevada just 15 miles north of Carson City. It's 1,874 miles from Peoria to Carson City.  (Aside from audio books, podcasts & windshield mounts) There are several maps apps & websites I used to help plan and document our 3-day journey

Editing Related Records in Collector for ArcGIS

Editing Related Records in Collector for ArcGIS

Good relationships are important in Business, Sports, Personal 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.

Dashboards - No Sweat

Dashboards - No Sweat

Most of us are familiar with this idea of dashboards. A quick overview of a set of data, system or project with supporting charts, dials or graphs that emphasize particular points about the data or view. There are some ESRI tools that have been around such as the Operations Dashboard, or the analysis-focused Insights. And now as of the June 2017 update, Web AppBuilder now has built-in functions for quickly creating configurable, informative dashboards on top of your web GIS.

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...

Prairie State Playlist: A Story Map Music Tour Through the Land of Lincoln

Our travels here at Cloudpoint take us to many places throughout the state of Illinois (as well as many other states). In the spirit of our connections to the Prairie State, as well as our varied tastes in music, here is a Story Map that focuses on a selected set of songs that contain Illinois place names in their titles-The Prairie State Playlist.

The Prairie State Playlist is constructed using Esri's Story Map Journal template. Maps of each location comprise the "Main Stage", while information and a link to the song are in the "Side Panel." The maps for the Prairie State Playlist were created in ArcGIS Online as webmaps, and then converted to apps using Web AppBuilder, which allows for a better interface and the inclusion of widgets such as a Legend, Basemap Gallery, etc. The webmaps alone can also be included as content in the Story Map, as well as videos, images, and web pages.

Please browse the Prairie State Playlist and enjoy the music tour through the Land of Lincoln. Along the way, you might pick up some information about Bob Dylan, Tornadoes, and an EPA Superfund site.


Mapping the Best Places to Work.

Mapping the Best Places to Work.

Sometime ago I read an article on the Forbes Magazine website about a yearly index they create that was screaming for a map. Every year demographers at Forbes comb through US Bureau of Labor Statistics data and the rate 'Best' small, medium and large US cities for job growth.  As I read the article I kept wondering, "Where are these in relation to one another?" and "Is there a certain concentration geographically as a whole?" So I got my hands on the dataset...

How to show Flow Direction for pipe networks in ArcGIS Online

How to show Flow Direction for pipe networks in ArcGIS Online

After a few years now of ArcGIS Online, there is still no support for non-simple line symbols. This means for utilities, or streams, routes or whatever line features you may be managing, you cannot easily display them with flow direction arrows as in Desktop. Please Note: Those with access to ArcGIS for Server can certainly publish map services that will support this type of symbology and can be displayed through ArcGIS Online. However there are probably many that do not have that option, so in this post I'll discuss a one method as a work-around to solve this...

10 ways to use GIS for Sidewalk and ADA Compliance

10 ways to use GIS for Sidewalk and ADA Compliance

Sidewalk inventories and ADA compliance are currently a hot topic among local agencies.  This post will provide you with some tips and ideas on how to use GIS to create and update your sidewalk inventory with the ArcGIS platform via the web and mobile devices.  

Harnessing the power of Esri's Collector App

Harnessing the power of Esri's Collector App

I can tell you that the most powerful tool that I have encountered during my experience in the GIS industry is Esri's Collector Application.  The Collector app allows...

These Pop-ups are Making Me Thirsty: Embedding Related Attachments from ArcGIS Server in an ArcGIS Online Pop-up


In an ArGIS Online webmap, a user can click on a link within a pop-up window to view an attachment, or even embed an attachment stored in ArcGIS Online or in an outside photo-sharing site. But is there a way to embed related attachments (as a large batch) that reside on ArcGIS Server directly within the pop-up windows? We sought an answer to this question while creating a Utility Pole Viewer for the City of Sullivan, Illinois.

After some tinkering, we came up with a solution. There are a few twists and turns in the process, but nothing that suggests getting twisted up like a pretzel (or getting as angry as George Costanza).

First, you want to rename your feature class to [FeatureClassName]_working (or something to differentiate it from the original), and go about the process of enabling attachments on that feature class. Use the Generate Attachment Match Table and Add Attachments tools to populate the attachments in the related table. If you publish your service at this point and view the pop-up for this layer in an ArcGIS Online webmap, this is what you would see...


...just a link to the attachment.

Clicking that link opens up the attachment in a new browser tab:

That's OK, but we want to see the attachment in the pop-up. Lets take a closer look at the URL in the image above:

We determined that the group of digits between 0/ and /attachments refers to the OBJECTID of the feature class, and the group of digits after attachments/ is the ATTACHMENTID from the related table. However, fields from the related table are not available to choose when configuring the URL for the pop-up image in a webmap-so we need to get the ATTACHMENTID into the feature class attributes.

In ArcMap, join your feature class and the related table ([FeatureClassName_working__ATTACH) based on the Object GUID from the feature class and REL_GLOBALID from the table.

Export the feature class, but turn off all fields from the related table except ATTACHMENT ID and REL_GLOBALID. Give the file name the original name of the feature class. In ArcCatalog, create attachments on this feature class, and load data from the [FeatureClassName]_working__ATTACH table into [FeatureClassName]__ATTACH.

Back in ArcMap, add your feature class to an mxd and publish a mapping service. 

Add the service to a new webmap, enable and configure the pop-up, and add an image under Pop-up Media.

In the Configure Image window, you can choose a field to use as a title (we used ATTACHMENTID), and add the URL where the attachment resides. To get this, copy and paste the URL from the browser tab that has the attachment, and change the digits between 0/ and /attachments to {OBJECTID} and the digits after attachments/ to {ATTACHMENTID}

The result: An attachment embedded within the pop-up window.

Zoom to your Room.

ArcGIS Online has released a new update for November. 

Here is a list of what was expected. 

Among them is a hidden gem that hardly got noticed or mentioned but will change the way we do GIS on the Collector App. 

  • World Imagery, World Street Map, and World Topographic Map will be updated with additional levels of detail in the tiling scheme to support display of larger scale data in or on the basemap. 

Did you see it? No neither did anyone at our office. That was until Paul stumbled upon it while using Collector this week during a data collection project. He kept zooming in and zooming in until all the valves were individually visible.

If you have never come across this, it's a BIG stumbling block for utility folks!  Lots of these guys have oversized hands and clicking on a bunch of tiny dots can really get frustrating.  

This is the difference from an ArcGIS Server Cache to the Esri imagery Basemap

This is the difference from an ArcGIS Server Cache to the Esri imagery Basemap


In the past we have created a tile caches down to 1:500 for ArcGIS online (Or 1:250 if they have ArcGIS Server) this allows our clients to zoom in close enough to see the different features. Possibly click on several and hope the one they want got selected. 

No More!

Esri updated Three Basemaps (4 if you count Labels) World Imagery, World Street Map, and World Topographic Map that now zoom-in to an unbelievable 1:71 !!! I cannot overstate how awesome this IS. Sure the imagery and maps are a little fuzzy but WHO-CARES at that scale you just want to be able to see the features separately. 

If you look into this on ArcGIS Online web map, you can see that it's actually called "Room Level"

**Note if you Don't see this change on the Webmap interface, SAVE your map and try opening it again. AGO is a SAAS, but still needs to update the capabilities of the Webmap. 

Now, get out there you large-handed-gorilla & Zoom-Zoom!


Not So Lite Anymore

For the first few years, ArcGIS Online was considered ArcGIS-Lite by many of us (including me). Pushing data to the cloud without the need for a server was indeed huge, but capabilities were often not. Even down to the lack of labeling, it was almost extremely basic in many respects. However, those of us who have been using and following the platform have been impressed by the gusto with which ESRI has pursued the enhancement of ArcGIS Online.

Over the last couple of years we’ve seen improvements across the board, from symbology to data storage, from basemaps to analytical capabilities. For instance, data collectors can now take data offline where internet access is limited and sync up when convenient. Or how about related tables - editing related records via the Collector app is finally here. FINALLY. And that’s not to mention the continued improvement to web application templates (there are 24 now, and that’s not including Web AppBuilder) that require zero coding to setup. Even the help documentation is pretty fantastic these days.

So there’s A LOT to be excited about in the world of ArcGIS Online. But right now I’d like to focus that excitement on spatial analysis. You know, that fun stuff that got so many of us intrigued by GIS, but so few of us utilize in the real world. Well ArcGIS Online has had improvements to that side of things to. So what kinds of situations would you find spatial analysis useful? Maybe you’re unfamiliar with the concepts, or maybe it’s just been a while. So here are a few examples:

Proximity and Site Selection

    Displaying areas or features within a specified distance from main roads

    Displaying areas or features within a specified distance from a flood plain

    Finding location(s) within an area containing a certain threshold of elderly population

    Finding location(s) within an area containing a certain threshold of young professionals

    Where can food trucks station based on local rules and regulations

    Combinations of any two or more sets of parameters or specs

Analyzing Patterns

    Determining areas with a high or low density of grocery stores

    High and low clustering (Hot Spot Analysis) of owner-occupied land parcels

These are just a very small sample of uses. Using GIS to perform analysis adds the visual component to the results, or an extra dimension in terms of data. It not only looks cool, it helps with comprehension!


Completely Fictitious Example Workflow

Let's say YourCity is interested in determining dimly-lit residential areas to allocate resources to. There have been a number of complaints and safety concerns, and now there is some funding available. So it is up to you as the GIS professional to assist using GIS as a tool to find and display the best areas to allot that funding.

In this case you are using zoning and streetlight information made available to you.

Step 1: Display Streetlights by Brightness Values

Symbols Sizes by Brightness and Classified by Natural Breaks

Light Symbols by Brightness

Step 2: Determine Residential Areas

Filter zoning layer to only display designated residential areas:

Step 3: Find Existing Locations

Use Find Existing Locations tool to determine where streetlights falling below a brightness threshold are near residential-zoned areas. This will use both an attribute query and a spatial query to produce a new layer meeting the specified criteria.

Step 4: Review Results

Find Existing Locations Results.png

In this small, controlled area it is apparent and obvious where the targeted data fall. However in a larger area, it would be useful to further analyze these results to determine where clusters of dimly-lit areas are located. Those results could in turn aid in the decision making process regarding resource allocation.

Disclaimer: Two things you should always keep in mind - the quality and completeness of the input data, and choosing the appropriate boundary for your analysis, as changing the analysis extent will change your results.


Q: I have desktop. So why perform the analysis on ArcGIS Online? A: The same reasons that you use ArcGIS Online for anything – you can easily share the data through the web. You can dress it up in an application or presentation. And access it anywhere.

Q: What about service credits? A: No worries. First of all it’s not as bad as you might think. Second, you have a chance to see how many credits you will use before you pull the trigger. If it’s too much, you can back off or change your processing extent – but you’ll be surprised at how reasonable it is.

Anticipated credit usage can be reviewed before performing analysis

So there you go. Check it out, or ask someone who has. The spatial analysis capability with ArcGIS Online is here, it’s a great tool - and like the rest of the platform is constantly improving. Look for ways to answer your questions with GIS and add that spatial component that you can visualize and share.