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How-to: Using our new ArcGIS Online-Hosted Map Services

How-to: Using our new ArcGIS Online-Hosted Map Services

The Rhode Island Digital Atlas is an ongoing initiative at the Environmental Data Center. The Atlas is a collection of simple, easy-to-use, interactive maps of Rhode Island using data available from the Rhode Island Geographic Information System (RIGIS) consortium.  The Atlas is a wonderful resource if you just need a quick map.

The interactive maps available in the Atlas are built upon a number of components that we also host and maintain in the Environmental Data Center.  One of these components is the "map service."  The map service allows us to share maps built with traditional desktop based GIS software and view, and interact with them in the "cloud".  We currently host over 150 map, image, locator, and geoprocessing services that are used by the Atlas and other ongoing projects.

As you might imagine, some of our map services are more heavily used than the others.  The most recent aerial photographs from RIGIS are our most popular.

To help improve the performance of the Atlas, we've published copies of two map services to Esri's ArcGIS Online: orthophotographs from 2011, and a second service featuring aerial photographs from 2008.  These services, along with the others that support the Atlas, are publicly accessible - you're welcome to re-use them in your own maps and apps!

Here's how to get started with these new ArcGIS Online-hosted services...

ArcGIS Online

  1. Head over to ArcGIS Online.  (new to ArcGIS Online?  Check out our blog postings If I Only Had a Map and "Where in Rhode Island?".)
  2. Let's search for a service that features the 2011 aerial photographs available from RIGIS.  Try searching for "RI aerial 2011" or even just "RIGIS 2011."
  3. Scroll through your list of search results until you see a record that looks like the image below.  Keep an eye out for the "Tile Layer," not the "Imagery Layer" or "Web Map" versions which serve other purposes (to be covered in future blog posts!).
  4. Note that the account associated with this service is "URIEDC_RIGIS."  This is the only account that we use to share our services that feature RIGIS data.  If you choose a search result from another account, you may be using an out-of-date service.
  5. At this point, you may choose to add this to an ArcGIS Online map, or click on "details" to learn more about this service.  
     

ArcMap

  1. Set your ArcMap project's projection.  If you are working in Rhode Island, chances are that you want to use the "NAD 1983 StatePlan Rhode Island FIPS 3800 (US Feet)" projection.
  2. Open the "Add Data from ArcGIS Online" search window:
  3. Let's search for the 2011 aerial photographs available from RIGIS.  Try "RI aerial 2011" or even just "RIGIS 2011."
  4. When your search results arrive, look for this entry:
  5. Note that the account associated with this service is "URIEDC_RIGIS."  This is the only account that we use to share our services that feature RIGIS data.  If you choose a search result from another account, you may be using an out-of-date service.
  6. Click on "Add" to add this service to your map!  If you are prompted to choose a geographic coordinate system transformation, "NAD_1983_To_WGS_1984_5" is a solid choice (a future blog posting about this topic is also planned!).
     

Info for Developers

These new ArcGIS Online-hosted services are great for app development.  You ought to see better performance with these compared to the services hosted locally at the Environmental Data Center, particularly during the business day.

The REST endpoint for these services may be found by following the "ArcGIS Online" instructions listed above.  When your search result appears, choose "details."  Scroll down on the page, looking for the "Map Contents" section, where you'll find the REST endpoint will be listed there.

Please note that this service is offered to you under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.  In summary, please credit the University of Rhode Island Environmental Data Center as the source for this service.

 

Looking Ahead

Additional copies of other map services will eventually be created on ArcGIS Online as time - and our credits - permit.  If you have a favorite service that you'd like to see transitioned to the cloud, please let us know.  Over the next several months, we expect to gradually phase out our map services that feature aerial photographs in lieu of both ArcGIS Online-hosted map services, and image services that we host locally here at the University of Rhode Island.  Please keep an eye on the RIGIS-L email listserv for future announcements.

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Authored by

greg
 

Last updated

11/13/2014 - 11:05