The 2011 hurricane season in the United States churned up many severe tropical storms such as Irene, Arlene, Bret, Emily, Harvey, Maria, and Rina.
Meteorologists always track these tropical storms, and so do insurers and reinsurers. They use ArcGIS technology and data from Esri for location intelligence, which helps them accurately calculate risk in their coverage areas and make the timely decisions needed to help their clients recover from hurricanes and other catastrophic events as quickly as possible.
Hurricane Irene, which caused severe flooding and wind damage in states such as New Jersey, New York, and Connecticut last August, exemplifies why it is important to know the exact location of both insured properties and the intensity of the storm.
In this article, Esri insurance industry solutions manager Mark McCoy details how and why location intelligence with ArcGIS is becoming so valuable to the insurance industry.
Amica Mutual Insurance is one of the companies that uses ArcGIS to track major storms. Read Amica's story.
Explore Raster Data Using Pixel Inspector
The Pixel Inspector tool lets you view pixel values in a raster dataset being displayed in ArcMap. The tool is similar to the Identify tool; however, it will display an array of pixel values instead of a single pixel value. Read this tip to learn how to use Pixel Inspector.
ArcWatch is published monthly by Esri and contains GIS news, practical advice, and updates about the company's software and events. To submit article ideas, e-mail editor Carla Wheeler at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Do you want your thematic information on your map to stand out clearly? Then try using Esri's new Light Gray Canvas Map, which gives you a neutral, uncluttered background on which to display your data. "Today, people are using street, topographic, and imagery basemaps less often for their web map applications," said Mamata Akella, design lead on the Light Gray Canvas Map project. "We see a more minimalist basemap pattern emerging. It's providing this nice visual starting point on which people are overlaying their thematic information." Read the article.
You can now use Google Android to access data and mapping capabilities on your smartphone. How? By using Esri's free ArcGIS for Android application. Just download the app directly from the Android Market. Find out what you can do with this versatile app that Esri just released and how developers can also use ArcGIS Runtime SDK for Android to build customized apps for Google Android.
Join us at the Esri Federal GIS Conference, which will be held February 22-24, 2012, in Washington, D.C. You will hear about the latest trends and policies driving GIS projects throughout government and find out how your peers use the geographic approach to improve accountability, cut costs, manage data, support research, and streamline operations. Registration is free for federal employees. Learn more and register today.
The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia, used GIS to optimize office space and reduce maintenance costs. Using Esri technology, a GIS team there developed space utilization optimization tools to map out and analyze the use of each area. Read the article.
There's still time to submit an abstract for a presentation at the Esri International User Conference next summer. Giving a presentation lets you share your ArcGIS strategies, tips, and accomplishments. Submit an abstract no later than Nov. 30, 2011.
Using ArcGIS technology and data from Esri, you can create a timeline map of magnitude 5 and greater earthquakes that occurred around the world from 1970 to 2010.
Hill Air Force Base (AFB) in Utah uses ArcGIS and thermal infrared radiation (IR) imagery to identify failing roofing and utilities. Read the article.
In this video, Gady Pitaru of the City of Phoenix, Arizona, Aviation Department demonstrates how GIS is being used to help people find convenient parking spots at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport. Visit Find a Spot to see how one of the parking lot applications work.
Direct Relief International uses GIS web applications to keep donors apprised of where and how their contributions are being spent. Read the article. Visit the Haiti Aid Distribution map to see the value of the donations such as medical supplies and prescription drugs and where these items are being distributed.
Share what you have learned about the benefits of using GIS technology with your peers at the Esri Education User Conference (EdUC) next summer. Learn more about being a presenter and submit your abstract by January 13, 2012.
Do you have a vested interest in how changing technologies will affect geocoding? If so, register to attend the International Geospatial Geocoding Conference, December 6-7, 2011, in Redlands, California.
With no budget for a property reappraisal project, the tax and GIS departments in Guilford County, North Carolina, turned to some valuable free ArcGIS applications to create a photo geotagging system that let them accurately match photographs of single-family homes with parcel records stored in a computer-aided mass appraisal (CAMA) system. Read the article.
What do you think are the top five traits or skills you need to succeed in GIS? Esri education manager Joseph Kerski compiled his list, which includes curiosity. "Successful GIS professionals are inquisitive not just about geospatial technologies but also about the world around them," he says. Curious to find out what other skills and traits Kerski considers valuable for pursuing a GIS career? Read the article.
Map Use: Reading, Analysis, Interpretation, Seventh Edition, from Esri Press, covers the skills needed to effectively read and understand maps and includes a new section dedicated to interpreting environmental maps. With lab exercises and other supplementary instructor resources for a cartography and map design curriculum, the book also serves as a general cartographic resource and primer for GIS technology. Order the book.
CityEngine from Esri turns 2D GIS data into high-end 3D content using features, attributes, and defined rules. The more detail you can provide for each element, the more complex and realistic your 3D content, such as buildings, streets, trees, light poles, and cars. Read the article. Esri just released CityEngine 2011, which makes creating 3D models from 2D GIS data even easier than before. Learn more.
The Yakima Transit iBus widget, built with and powered by Esri technology, provides residents of Yakima, Washington, with the routes city buses are traveling, the vehicles' speeds, and the times the buses will arrive at their next stops. Read the article. See the iBus widget at work.
Using the Public Maps Gallery template and other ArcGIS Online resources, you can create your own custom map gallery for your organization's website. Read the tutorial.
Beau Legeer of ITT VIS introduces the concept of using lidar data for generating 3D building models. Watch the video.
Learn how to get started building mapping applications using ArGIS Runtime SDK for Android during this free live training seminar on January 19, 2012.
Esri wants to hear from you about ways to improve ArcGIS. Visit ArcGIS Ideas to get started.
GeoDesign for Adapting to Climate Change
Esri president Jack Dangermond discusses how GeoDesign can play a role in adapting to our changing climate. Join the discussion at the Spatial Roundtable.
When programmers leave an organization, complex custom GIS applications that only they understand how to develop and maintain sometimes fall by the wayside. Esri's Bern Szukalski says that in some cases, the solution lies in a simple configurable application. ArcGIS Online and ArcGIS Viewer for Flex make creating these applications so easy that even nonprogrammers can build them. Read Szukalski's Esri Insider blog.
See what people using social media are reporting as flooding continues to engulf Thailand. Ushahidi updates include alerts about broken dikes, road closures, and more. View Esri's Thailand Flood Map.
Peruse more than 50 presentations from the 2011 Esri Health GIS Conference and learn how GIS is being used in the health care industry.
These low- or no-cost web courses from Esri show how to use ArcGIS Spatial Analyst tools for raster-based spatial modeling and analysis.
Follow these five basic design principles for cartography to create maps that communicate your message clearly.
Do you have an interesting story to tell about how you or your organization uses GIS? Share your story with ArcWatch readers. Submit your article for consideration.
Want to educate yourself about how GIS enriches learning? Visit the Esri Education Community Blog for instructional materials, data, and much more.
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