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Spring 2007
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ArcWeb Services Offers Open Viewer Code and New Enhanced Layering Capabilities

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With the AcWeb Services SVG Map Viewer, users can download the Java source code and customize their own rich Internet mapping applications.

ArcWeb Services offers a fully customizable Scalable Vector Graphics (SVG) Map Viewer with downloadable source code, as well as more powerful features for the Representational State Transfer (REST) API. The latest version of the REST API now provides built-in data layer switching, so developers don't have to write the code from scratch, as well as the ability to include tiled satellite imagery. ArcWeb Services is hosted by Esri and supplies full-featured GIS Web services APIs.

The ArcWeb Services SVG Map Viewer combines the benefits of vector graphics into an open and fully customizable, rich Internet mapping application that consumes ArcWeb Services using the REST API and the SOAP API SVG, a nonproprietary, vector file format developed by the World Wide Web Consortium. The SVG Map Viewer offers a number of benefits:

  • Open viewer code—Modify any aspect of the graphical user interface. Perfectly tune the application to end users' workflows.
  • Rapid deployment—Use it as is or customize to suit users' needs.
  • Built-in functions—Save time when coding by using predefined functions, such as identify objects by "mouse over" or mouse click and turn on/off multiple map layers.
  • Faster performance—No caching is required for large maps.
  • High quality—Sharp-looking anti-aliased graphics look crisp even when zoomed in.

The viewer's Java and JSP sample code includes prebuilt functions for combining users' point data with other points, lines, polygons, and text with the map data. Functions are even offered for creating map animations. The SVG Map Viewer also includes a number of customizable widgets for helping users define application features, such as map extent, layer visibility, map styles, and projections. Developers can choose to include or not include a widget in the application as a way to polish the end product. Widgets can be opened, closed, and even moved around on top of the main mapping application. They provide a succinct way to isolate and tailor functionality for the needs of a specific type of end user.

In addition to the new SVG Map Viewer, the ArcWeb Services REST API now offers controls for easily turning on and off layers, as well as functionality for requesting raster tile maps, such as satellite imagery to be used as base layers. REST is inherently lightweight and easy to use. A Web application uses URL requests over HTTP to retrieve maps and geographic information from ArcWeb Services. The REST API now gives applications a visual and creative boost by providing tools for blending geographic data from multiple sources, as well as dynamically overlaying points, lines, and polygons.

An example use case is a municipality dispatch application that displays not only streets and imagery basemaps but also real-time, animated icons representing police car locations and their metadata; a polygon representing the patrol districts; as well as real-time traffic and precipitation data. With regard to using polygons in the application, the REST API saves development effort because developers just specify the vertices and the API automatically resizes the shape based on zoom level.

To start using the ArcWeb Services SVG Map Viewer today, visit

More Information

For more information about the ArcWeb Services REST API, visit

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