Posts Tagged ‘arcgis’

Flow Mapping (Box Shaped World)

Tuesday, June 2nd, 2009

uk-interdependenceminard

[Editor's note: Flow maps have always ranked high on my radar but constructing them has always been tedious. This post and academic paper link detail how they can be automated with programatically, including edge routing (not directly from A to B, but with bends to not overlap other connections).]

Republished from Box Shaped World.

Getting a head start on a new project that is more cartographic. It will involve mapping migration/flows from Australia to the Northern Territory (probably smaller geographic units than states). I like making maps, and so I’m excited to do some cartography beyond standard ArcGIS layouts. There are different possibilities on how to map this. Initially, I think I will use something like this that creates a more trunk/branch flow map instead of the typical straight line between places (Tobler’s Flowmapper). The project lead doesn’t like this style too much, but thought the trunk/branch style might work. We might pursue other mapping techniques, which would be cool to try and apply different map techniques to this area…

Continue reading at Box Shaped World . . .

Republished from Stanford Graphics paper.

Cartographers have long used flow maps to show the movement of objects from one location to another, such as the number of people in a migration, the amount of goods being traded, or the number of packets in a network. The advantage of flow maps is that they reduce visual clutter by merging edges. Most flow maps are drawn by hand and there are few computer algorithms available. We present a method for generating flow maps using hierarchical clustering given a set of nodes, positions, and flow data between the nodes. Our techniques are inspired by graph layout algorithms that minimize edge crossings and distort node positions while maintaining their relative position to one another. We demonstrate our technique by producing flow maps for network traffic, census data, and trade data.

Continue reading past abstract, includes source code . . .

ESRI’s ArcGIS Server Provides Foundation for Maryland’s MD iMap (ESRI)

Tuesday, April 28th, 2009

mdimap

[Editor's note: One of the more useful + powerful sites to leverage new Flash / Flex mashup capabilities of new ArcGIS 9.3 release. The site is designed both for state residents and government policy makers. Thanks Mary Kate!]

Republished from ESRI and State of Maryland. Original Feb. 11, 2009.

Authoritative Statewide Basemap and Performance Measurement Tool Serves Government and Citizens

Redlands, California—Maryland Governor Martin O’Malley recently launched the ArcGIS Server software-based MD iMap, an authoritative online basemap of Maryland that allows government and citizens to assess state, local, and municipal performance. As the portal into the state’s enterprise geographic information system (GIS), MD iMap also provides data to governments throughout the state including seamless, geocoded statewide centerlines and six-inch imagery. MD iMap embodies O’Malley’s vision of “one Maryland, one map.”

“In Maryland, GIS is vital to setting goals, tracking performance, and creating transparency,” said O’Malley. “We have been using GIS for years to increase government accountability and efficiency and to enhance transparency. With one comprehensive and interactive map for Maryland, our citizens will have access to unprecedented information online. From land conservation to public safety, the possibilities are endless when government becomes transparent and accountable to the citizens it serves.”

GreenPrint is the first GIS-based performance measurement application that is accessible via MD iMap. It is a planning tool designed to help government staff, conservation organizations, and individual citizens make good decisions about land conservation and growth. The state’s other performance measurement applications, including StateStat and BayStat, will be added soon.

To support government staff in Maryland, a secure agency login on the MD iMap Web site home page connects users to Maryland GIS Online, which is built with ArcGIS Online. On that site, staff can download data and Web services from other government entities in the state. In addition to significantly enhancing data sharing and coordination, the portal is innovative in its delivery of real-time, up-to-date statistics in one sleek, user-friendly interface.

“Governor O’Malley’s vision of one Maryland, one map, speaks to the best in government including accountability, unity, and service to citizens. It is also an outstanding example of a public and private partnership driving government forward,” said ESRI president Jack Dangermond.

Interact with the original at MDiMap . . .

Interview with MarineMAP Mashup Developers (Kelso)

Tuesday, April 21st, 2009

marinemapsupporttool

[Editor's note: MarineMAP is a cutting edge mashup built using PostGIS, GeoDjango, Ajax, Flash, OpenLayers, GeoServer and MapServer with Google base map tiles. It assists stakeholders in the design of MPAs (Marine Protected Areas) in mapping oceanographic, biological geological, chemical and human dimensions of the ocean and coastal areas. I talk with Will McClintock and Chad Burt of the Marine Science Institute at University of California at Santa Barbara about the technical underpinnings and development philosophy behind the project. One key to the project's success (rolled out Dec. 2008) has been the hiring of dedicated programmers to implement design ideas and new technology to extend an earlier version's usability and reach. Thanks Melissa and Sebastian!]

Interact with the MarineMAP at marinemap.org/marinemap.

Interactive Map Tool Objective: MarineMap is an internet-based decision support tool that provides the capacity for the SCRSG (South Coast Regional Stakeholder Group) to view data layers, create individual MPA concepts, assemble collections of individual MPA concepts into MPA arrays, receive basic feedback on how well MPA concepts and arrays meet guidelines for MPA design, and submit MPA arrays to staff as MPA proposals. This tool will be the primary way in which MLPA Initiative staff and SCRSG members capture and store information regarding MPA proposals.

marinemapsupporttool2

(Above) Screenshot above showing Marine mammal and Nearshore habitat layers on base map with area Measurement Tool enabled.

(Question) Kelso’s Corner: What technologies are leveraged in MarineMAP?

(Anwer) MarineMAP: We’re not using ArcGIS at all, save for cutting map tiles (using ArcGIS Desktop and Arc2Earth) and, as a non-critical component of the system, ArcSDE / SQL Server. We’re mainly using PostGIS, GeoDjango, Ajax, Flash, OpenLayers, GeoServer and MapServer and will soon switch to the Google Earth API.

We are using OpenLayers, rather than the Google Maps API for our “slippy map”. OpenLayers is pure javascript, as is most of the client application. We are using Flex, but only for the charting component. [Editor's note: OpenLayers is using the Google Maps tiles.]

(Q) Kelso’s Corner: How many programmers do you have on staff to deal with all the software components?

(A) MarineMAP: Currently, two of our developers work full-time on MarineMap, while our other two developers work half time. We also have several GIS analysts and a cartographer to deal with the data end of things. We are now looking for a full-time, in-house Assistant Web Developer to continue working on MarineMap. As we extend MarineMap to different geographies and planning processes, we anticipate that we’ll be looking for one or two more programmers as well.

(Q) Kelso’s Corner: What was the rational for doing this substantial map development in house? Did you evalutate other routes, consultants, off the shelf software before going this route, why was this option preferable? Did you have a good cheat sheet for how to develop / implement this technology? Did you have to hire new staff to do the programming or did you have existing expertise to draw on?

(Anwer) MarineMAP: We did not have a cheat sheet for how to develop / implement this technology. This was a brand new application using some new technologies, and some that we were familiar with. Of course, we had experience developing other applications and some of these technologies overlapped. But, there was a significant amount of learning happening for all of our developers.

The MLPAI is an on-going process that will terminate sometime around 2011. Until then, we need to have a highly functional and stable application that can be adapted to the changing needs of the process. It turned out to be much more cost-effective and time efficient to hire in-house developers to work on the application year-round. Before we built our team, we spent a significant amount of time considering a host of alternatives, including trying to maintain and tweak Doris, contracting out all of the work, etc.  Initially, we felt we did not have enough in-house expertise. Although we already had Chad Burt (UCSB), Jared Kibele (UCSB), Tim Welch (Ecotrust) and, now, Ken Vollmer (Ecotrust) as our in-house crew, we eventually contracted two developers from Farallon Geographics (Dennis Wuthrich and Alexei Peters) for a limited period to  help with developing the database schema. This was particularly nice given that we had only 6 months to get the first version of MarineMap out the door. Dennis and Alexei are no longer working on the project but I am very grateful that we had access to their time and expertise during the initial phases.

(Q) Kelso’s Corner: What was Doris?

(Anwer) MarineMAP: At the beginning of the Marine Life Protection Act Initiative (MLPAI), staff chose to hire consultants to build an application (eventually called “Doris”) that was built on ArcGIS Server 9.1 technologies. It shared some of the features of MarineMap, including drawing MPAs and arrays, and generating reports on what was being captured inside those MPAs. Doris had a poorly designed interface and, perhaps more significantly, it was dreadfully slow. Consequently, few stakeholders used it. Furthermore, because the application was built using technologies with which we had no particular in-house expertise, and because these technologies were proprietary, we had a difficulty updating the application or tweaking it on the fly. (I had been running ArcSDE / ArcIMS and ArcGIS Server applications for a couple years but had no real development expertise in, say, ArcObjects, or VB .Net.)

(Q) Kelso’s Corner: It seems there are many more RubyOnRails developers than Django. Have you found this a hindrance for hiring staff or when looking for trouble shooting advice?

(Anwer) MarineMAP: It does seem to be a bit of a challenge finding Django developers, particularly those that can / will work locally. I have not tried to hire a RubyOnRails expert so I have no direct means comparison.

(Q) Kelso’s Corner: Why will you be switching to the Google Earth API? Is this only for the front end? Have you been happy with GeoDjango?

(Anwer) MarineMAP: GeoDjango has been fantastic. Using the Google Earth API does not mean ditching GeoDjango. Rather, using the Google Earth API represents a shift away from the OpenLayers API. We’ll still be using GeoDjango extensively.

[Our lead developer] was a big proponent of RubyOnRails for quite some time, but Django has taken many of its best ideas to Python. While Ruby is aesthetically a beautiful language, Python is usually much faster and has a more mature set of modules to build on. The only thing I miss after switching over to Django is the database migrations Rails offers. Most open source GIS packages also have bindings for Python, where as there a few similar tools for Ruby.

Switching to the Google Earth API will just mean replacing OpenLayers. OpenLayers is a very good library, but the Earth API is much faster due to the fact that it is a compiled plugin rather than being written in javascript. This allows it to display thousands of placemarks on screen at once, which is one of the primary reasons for switching. Google Earth can also display temporal and 3d data.

(Q) Kelso’s Corner: Besides the change to Google Earth API, what other changes, updates do you plan for this online map?

(Anwer) MarineMAP: Besides switching to the Google Earth API, there is one major upcoming update to MarineMap. Specifically, we will be implementing a map-based (i.e., location based) discussion forum. Users will be able to zoom into a location on a map and tag objects (MPAs, data, places) with a comment. Other users will see these comments (if they have comments “turned on”) as they zoom in to a location or if they load an MPA. Users can then participate in a dialog via a traditional discussion forum that is linked to the map. Furthermore, users will be able to define a geographic region and subscribe to RSS feeds (using GeoRSS) for any activity within that region. One might choose to do this, for example, if they want to be notified by email any time somebody draws a new MPA in, or makes a comment about a data layer in a specific region that he / she cares most about. I believe the map-based discussion forum will go a long way in facilitating discussion about MPAs, particularly outside the in-person monthly stakeholder meetings.

Conclusion: Thanks so much for the informative Q&A session. Please check out the MarineMap project at MarineMap.org/marinemap.

Ortelius, new Mac GIS software?

Tuesday, March 31st, 2009

Ortelius was demonstrated at the AAG conference in Las Vegas in mid March and looks promising. It’s billed as an affordable middle-way between Adobe Illustrator + MaPublisher and ArcGIS and it works on Macs, which ArcGIS does not. It’s a graphics design package that can import shapefiles and purports knowing object topology. It also has an integrated database so you can view and edit map object attributes. Map projections are supported and the package comes with pre-loaded map files to get you started.

Ortelius is currently under development and version 1.0 will be available in the first quarter of 2009. The intention is to release standard and “pro” versions with a starting price of $79. Thanks to Martin for this tip.

Read more on the MapDiva blog about the product . . .

Tutorial for ArcGIS web mapping API for JavaScript (ESRI)

Tuesday, February 10th, 2009

[Editor's note: This tutorial from ESRI walks the user thru a short project using the new ArcGIS web mapping API for Javascript.]

Republished from ESRI ArcUser magazine.
Winter 2009. View code snippits.
List of sites using ArcGIS API for Javascript.

Add a Map to a Web Page in Three Simple Steps
Getting started with the ArcGIS API for JavaScript

By Bronwyn Agrios, ESRI Education Services

Giving a wider audience access to your geographic data and maps through a Web page is almost effortless when you embed a simple map into a new or existing Web site using the ArcGIS API for JavaScript. Although ArcGIS Server provides many methods for adding a spatial component to a Web site, the ArcGIS API for JavaScript lets you use ArcGIS Server services to build lightweight, high-performance, pure browser GIS applications. ArcGIS API for JavaScript is hosted by ESRI and free to use. There are no licensing or service fees associated with its use.

Use the ArcGIS API for JavaScript to embed a map or perform a task such as querying spatial data in your Web application. The best way to get started using the ArcGIS API for JavaScript is to use the application samples and services provided by ESRI. If needed, you can modify these samples to include your own services and custom functionality in a mashup that incorporates multiple layers and functionalities in a single application.

This tutorial shows you how to access ArcGIS Online services through a simple Web application created using the JavaScript API. ArcGIS Online is a family of Web-based services and resources that lets you populate applications with base data hosted by ESRI and access tasks. In this exercise, you will be using only spatial content from ArcGIS Online in a JavaScript API application so you won’t even need to set up and maintain an installation of ArcGIS Server.

The Flagler County Property Appraiser Web site used the ArcGIS API for JavaScript to create an application that helps citizens find real property information including land, building, assessed, and taxable values.

Step 1

Embedding a Hosted Map in a New Web Page To create a Web page that contains an embedded map from a hosted service, you do not need to have ArcGIS Server installed or possess mapmaking or programming skills.

The following section will help familiarize you with the ArcGIS API for JavaScript samples on the ArcGIS Server Resource Center that you can use to create this page.

ArcGIS Resource Centers provide you with one-stop access to help resources, blogs, communities, and other information on all ArcGIS products. Navigate to resources.esri.com and select ArcGIS Server or any other
products. To learn more about the available samples, you will make a local copy of some sample JavaScript code and make it available through a new hosted Web page using the following steps:

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Meet Richard Furno (Kelso)

Wednesday, January 21st, 2009

My friend and cartography colleague Richard Furno retired from The Washington Post as of January 1st, 2009. He had a long and productive career first at National Geographic Maps starting in 1963 and then for 30 years at the newspaper making daily, deadline driven maps for publication in the next day’s newspaper from 1978 to 2008. For many of those years, he was the newspaper’s Chief Cartographer and influenced a generation of cartographers. He was a victim of a changing media landscape and dreary economic times.

Richard has been a great mentor to me, encouraging me in my map making, strengthening my graphic design and visual story telling, and given me the courage to take up software programming. His love of maps brought out the best in those he worked with and has driven us to want to excel. He was the last (map) projectionist at National Geographic Maps and his insights about that science are one of a kind.

We are officially honoring Richard this week in the NewsArt department. The image above is a “roast” page that is a typical gift for departing colleagues with jokes and jabs mixed in with general vignettes (the page should be taken with a grain of salt). View larger. Download PDF.

 

Recommendation by Michael Keegan
Former AME (Associate Managing Editor)
NewsArt Department
The Washington Post

Dick Furno by any other name would be… what? Map Man? Longitude Dude? The Prime Meridian? When you think of Dick Furno, you think maps. He is the man — the Map Man.

We all have someone we instinctively go to for answers about a particular subject. When it is a question of mapping or geography, I go to Dick Furno. No one else. Dick is my Map Man. Over the years I have know him, Dick has patiently explained to me many particulars of making and reading maps — about the best way of creating them and why one map projection may be better than another. But I think the most important lesson that he has taught me is the appreciation of maps themselves, and for the power and importance they hold.

This was especially true at The Washington Post were we worked together for nearly 24 years. The significance of maps to the Post’s reporting cannot be overemphasized. They located murder scenes and closed roads, school openings, fires and protest marches in the streets. They recorded armies moving across boarders, ships sinking, and political victories as well as the best locations for ice cream in the heat of summer.

Washington Post maps were rich with information and they packed that information in a small amount of space. Maps clarified stories, they made precise reference to location when the copy could not. And in the end, maps simply helped educate readers about the physical world they lived in, and that, in itself, was a noble cause.

Dick was cartography’s best evangelist at the newspaper. He set high standards and continuously raised those standards. He taught several generations of editors that their stories were so much more clear and authoritative with a map. And by the time of his recent retirement, Dick had build a team of excellent cartographers to carry on what he started at the newspaper — Map Man’s legacy.

 

Richard Furno the Map Maker

While he was at National Geographic, Richard worked on The Moon Map and I’ve posted an extensive photo essay on that project here. That is just one of the many fabulous projects he’s worked on. Here’s a small image gallery of a few others (click on thumbnails to see larger view):

  

 

Richard Furno the Programmer

Before there was ArcMap or ArcView there was Azimuth, a CAD based mapping solution that we still use to this day at The Washington Post. It had geodatabases before that phrase was coined. It combines both thematic classes and layers into a single document where they can be freely mixed and matched, with multiple sets of database attributes, and Adobe Illustrator export. But more importantly, it also is the best tool out there for choosing an optimal map projection for the geography at hand and then quickly projecting raw data into a size appropriate for publication.

Richard saw the need for such a tool back in the 1980s when personal computers were just becoming available and taught himself how to program and steadily built in more functionality through the years.

I’ve noted significant milestones in Azimuth’s development below.

 

History of Azimuth

0.1 in 1982. IBM pc program command line, with menus. BASIC and then compiled. Could digitize with a 30  x 30 inch tablet output to pen plotter. All maps from 1980s mid in pen and paper. This is world loRes circa 1983, digitized world hiRes circa 1985.

1.0 in 1988. First Macintosh version via GraphSoft. From BASIC to Pascal. Only output perspectives… and could zoom in… Choose file and it would plot it (with a settings file) and output plot file.

2.0 in 1990 or 91. Now visible data layers.

2.5 in 1992. Mostly bug fixes, and new features.  Countries around 1992 or 3 which are all CIA country maps which became the basis for all the hires continentals (because they were from CIA).

3 skipped.

4.0 in 2001. Plugin to VectorWorks (known as MiniCad). Pascal to C++ in CodeWarrior.

4.5 in 2003. Raster image projection added. CodeWarrior.

5.0 in 2007. Modernizing code for new VectorWorks on Intel Macs.

5.5 in 2009. Adds new projections, datum support, bug fixes. From C++ to Cocoa / Carbon. X-Code.

New Web 2.0 APIs Make GIS Access and Integration Capability Available to Everyone (ESRI ArcNews)

Thursday, November 13th, 2008

[Editor's note: 2 of 2 articles of note from the Fall 2008 ESRI ArcNews magazine. This about new ArcGIS web 2.0 API services for JavaScript and Flex / Actionscript / MXML allow Google Maps style mashups. Includes informative podcast.]

Republished from ESRI ArcNews.

ArcGIS Server 9.3 Radically Simplifies Users’ Experience

click to enlarge An executive dashboard mashup created with ArcGIS Server that provides city staff the ability to monitor the status of capital improvements, 311 calls, and police patrols.

With the release of ArcGIS 9.3, ESRI provides a new set of application programming interfaces (APIs) that extend the range of what developers can do with mashups. These APIs give mashup developers more opportunities to rapidly build lightweight, focused applications on top of ArcGIS Server using JavaScript, Flex, Silverlight, and many other scripting languages. As a result, organizations can begin deploying an entirely new pattern of mashups, which involves combining internal and external data sources to create an application that solves a particular problem. These mashups more closely match the types of relationships, workflows, and administration developers need to support on a daily basis.

GIS-powered mashups empower users to solve real problems by incorporating the business knowledge and resource investments made by the organization and putting it in the hands of the decision makers and analysts who need to rely on trusted information. For example, a city government might build a mashup that focuses on vacant properties or brownfields to support community planning and economic development. In this case, parcel data might be combined with tools to analyze the development potential of a property based on different scenarios. The tools would appear as a simple button or drop-down menu of choices but, when executed, would access internally hosted information, such as zoning, crime, and infrastructure, and perform server-side analytics on the GIS server. The user would be presented with a hot spot or graduated-color map highlighting the areas that best met the selected criteria. This type of mashup could be used at the front counter or on the desk of an economic development specialist to help engage business and industry owners interested in moving their operation to the community. It would provide access to authoritative data not readily available on the Internet.

click to enlarge ArcGIS Server offers a rich set of tools to build lightweight Web applications.

Until recently, mashups have been thought of as Web applications that aggregate data feeds from multiple Web services into a simple and often social or consumer-oriented Web application. Mapping mashups show the locations of points of interest generated from available services and GeoRSS feeds that contain spatial information, such as addresses or coordinates. Now, organizations are adopting the concept that mashups can be useful for conducting business and providing critical functionality to their users and business partners either over the Web or through internal distribution. Enterprise systems, like customer relationship management (CRM) or asset management systems, can be coupled with ArcGIS Server services to provide business and government managers and analysts with unique access to their authoritative knowledge bases. This means that an enterprise mashup must efficiently and seamlessly blend the GIS platform with the organization’s underlying systems architecture.

ArcGIS Server gives organizations the ability to manage and deploy Web services for mapping, data management, and geospatial analytics. These ArcGIS Server Web services allow organizations to leverage their internal GIS resources, as well as services hosted on other GIS servers, and put them to work in enterprise mashups. Because ArcGIS Server is built on industry and Web standards to support service-oriented architectures (SOAs) and hundreds of data formats, organizations are provided with an integration platform for creating and managing enterprise mashups.

In-depth description of the JavaScript and Flex APIs and podcast links on the next page…

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ArcGIS Online Services—The Foundation of Web GIS (ESRI)

Thursday, November 13th, 2008

[Editor's note: 1 of 2 articles of note from the Fall 2008 ESRI ArcNews magazine. This about new ArcGIS online services, eg personal "Google maps" style mashups, and pricing.]

Republished from ESRI ArcNews.

Highlights

  • ArcGIS Online premium services are now available.
  • Leverage ArcGIS Online services and ArcGIS APIs in mashups.
  • Use ArcGIS Online content locally via ArcGIS Data Appliance and DataDoors for ArcGIS.

In the past few years, the Web has greatly facilitated the dissemination and sharing of GIS capabilities, leading to the new term Web GIS. This reflects the growing use of the Web as a platform that supports authoring geoprocessing models and maps, then publishing them as services that can be easily consumed by a variety of client applications. Ad hoc consumption of multiple data sources and distributed services makes it easier to find and use geographic information, as well as share it with other GIS professionals, customers, constituents, and the public.

click to enlarge Users can add their own GIS layers to Virtual Earth basemaps.

As an emerging dominant platform for both social and business-driven interaction, Web GIS merges (or mashes up) authoritative content with user-generated content to deliver location-based information and applications to a broader audience. Consumers can view a map showing the locations of gas stations with the lowest prices or analyze the impact a wildfire might have on their home and property. Emergency response officials can use that same wildfire map and add their own data on top of it to analyze how to plan and respond to a worst-case scenario, including routing personnel and equipment and devising evacuation routes for the populations at risk. Local governments can now provide information to their constituents in a more timely and cost-effective manner via the Web, allowing them, for example, to browse homeownership information or parcel records online or inform residents about upcoming street maintenance projects that will impact neighborhood traffic. Common to all these examples is the need for ready-to-use, current, and accurate basemap data that sometimes has to be available on short notice and onto which proprietary data can be easily overlaid, or mashed up, in order to provide information in a useful and meaningful context.

ArcGIS Online Services, powered by ArcGIS Server, can be crawled, indexed, searched, and used to share information and provide analytic capabilities to a broader audience over the Web or a network in the most effective manner. Developers who want to serve live, dynamic mapping applications over the Web can easily implement ArcGIS Online. For example, a viewer application, such as the one featured in the ArcGIS Online Services Resource Center (resources.esri.com/arcgisonlineservices) can be built quickly using the ArcGIS APIs for JavaScript. Users can also add additional content, such as photos or video and sound files.

In-depth description of the online map services, resolutions, coverage and podcasts on the next page…

click to enlarge

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Using Google Maps to Visualize ArcGIS Data & Services (Google Geo Dev. Blog)

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2008

[Editor's note: This blog joint blog post from ESRI and Google has examples on how to integrate the new 9.4 features with Google Maps Mashups. This includes all the power of GIS geo-processing leveraged into the Mashup environment. I hope this trend continues with the promised release of a Flash/Flex API for ArcGIS.]

Reprinted from Google Geo Developers Blog. Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Hi, I’m Sterling Quinn and I work on the development team for server-based GIS technologies at ESRI in Redlands, California. We’re happy to report that ESRI software users can now expose their GIS in Google Maps through the recently-released ArcGIS JavaScript Extension for the Google Maps API. The extension is built on the Google Maps API and is designed to communicate with ArcGIS Server, ESRI’s product for serving GIS functionality on the Web.

The ArcGIS JavaScript Extension for the Google Maps API allows you to maintain the user-friendly front end of Google Maps while tapping into an advanced GIS on the back end. You can use the extension to display your own maps on top of Google’s, query features in your database and display them on the map, or expose tasks that run GIS analysis models on the server. You can display your results using the Google Maps API’s native graphics engine and info windows.

To learn how to use the ArcGIS JavaScript Extension for the Google Maps API, use the online SDK, which contains basic concepts, an API reference, and examples of how to create custom maps and Mapplets. The examples contain detailed descriptions on how to do things like adding an ArcGIS Server map type button,displaying query results as KML, or running a task on the server to return a route and elevation profile.

Following are some quick links to example Mapplets built with the ArcGIS JavaScript Extension for the Google Maps API. For those of you who don’t know, Mapplets are mini applications that you can add to Google Maps in the “My Maps” tab and are nifty because a user can enable multiple Mapplets at a time.

Cached Map ServiceDisplays an ArcGIS tiled map service over the Google base map.

Census Block QueryRetrieves US Census data from an ArcGIS map service at a point you click and displays it in a series of charts created with the Google Chart API.

Message in a BottleUses an ArcGIS geoprocessing service to tell you where a bottle would drift if you dropped it in the ocean.

Service Area AnalysisUses an ArcGIS geoprocessing service to display drive time polygons from a point you click.