Enterprise Cartographic Workflows

An enterprise database management system can be used to manage your cartographic holdings by providing an environment for shared editing, file management, archiving, history tracking, and workflow management. An enterprise cartographic map production system provides a well-designed database for the creation of multiple products at multiple scales from a master database.

Sample Cartographic Production Architectures

The following are sample architectures that are currently being used successfully for enterprise cartographic production. Data stored in a master database, can be accessed directly, or replicated out to either connected or disconnected environments.  The derived product databases allow you to adapt the visualization of the real world to fit the purpose of the map product you are creating. This framework is designed to optimize and facilitate cartographic production workflows.

Example 1

Example 1

In the first example, a master geodatabase is used to create separate file geodatabases for producing individual map products. The master geodatabase contains all the base geometry layers.   The product geodatabases contain the cartographic specific content such as representations, grids, and annotation.  The base layers are often separated into scale ranges either by maintaining separate layers or through the use of scale range attributes and definition queries.  

There are several advantages to maintaining separate cartographic specific databases for each map product:

  • Cartographic edits can be performed within the product databases
  • The database schema can be changed to support cartographic requirements
  • Geoprocessing operations, such as generalization tasks, can be run on the product database to prepare the data for cartographic finishing
  • Field values can be modified to perform specific cartographic operations, such as defining the types of end caps for each line segments based on its connectivity.

Quite often these types of “cartographic specific” database requirements are not included in the master geodatabases many organizations maintain. Having separate geodatabases for each map product puts the control over these types of changes into the hands of the cartographers while at the same time allows for restricted access to the master geodatabase. 

Example 2

Example 1

This second example is very similar to the first except that Personal SDE geodatabases using Microsoft SQL Express are used for each map product and two-way replication can be established between the master and product databases.  The additional advantages of the second example include:

  • Shared editing of the product database
  • Two-way replication allows updates made in the product database to be pushed back into the master.

In both examples the annotation for each map product is generated and stored within each of the product specific databases. There are several advantages to keeping the Annotation in the separate product databases:

  • Annotation can be scale dependent for each map product
  • Annotation can be stored in the coordinate system for which it is intended. 
  • Feature-linked annotation can be used to keep data and text in sync.
  • Improved organization of the annotation layers

Tools for managing multiple product databases and workflows for replication and updates are available through Esri Production Mapping. In particular,Workflow Manager for ArcGIS allows you to manage versions, define areas of interest, assign work tasks, and automate much of the replication, and check out processes. Product Library provides tools for organizing and managing the product databases and workspaces required for setting up an enterprise cartographic workflow.  

In these approaches the master geodatabase remains product neutral, allowing updates to be made to one master database, while providing cartographers the flexibility and access they need to make maps.

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