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FAQ: How are Esri application templates used in various user communities?

Question

How are Esri application templates used in various user communities?

Answer

Esri supplies data templates in support of many common activities within major industries and government agencies. For instance, the Local Government Information Model (or LGIM) provides information models for functions like public safety, land records, elections, planning and development, public works, infrastructure management, and others.

LGIM Home Page

The schema provided in these templates is in XML Workspace format; an associated data dictionary is also included. This allows data to be inserted into provided database structures, removing the need to create new database structures. The structures provided can be used in sample applications associated with the information model.

Loading Data

To use local government or other industry-specific templates, it is necessary to load the data into the tables of the template.

  • There is no universal conversion procedure because every user has different ways of organizing their data.
  • There is no provision for referencing the user's own data in its original form.
  • Each user must study the Esri data model and compare it to their own data structures.

The data dictionary describes the feature classes and fields of the template's data structures. Based on knowledge of the existing data, the user must decide which of their original fields and data structures correspond to the fields and data structures in the template.

Note:
This may require a significant amount of study and some experimentation. In some cases, these projects are large enough to be contracted to consulting agencies, such as Esri Professional Services.

The X-Ray for ArcCatalog add-in is available for ArcGIS versions 10.2 through 10.6. This add-in assists with migrating data structures into the Esri data model. Help documentation is available in multiple formats from the add-in's toolbar after it is installed in ArcCatalog. Its features include the ability to:

  • Develop and refine geodatabase designs
  • Analyze the differences between two geodatabase designs
  • Merge two different designs into a new consolidated geodatabase design
  • Check for reserved RDBMS field names in the design
  • Replace and reorder fields in a current geodatabase (via a geoprocessing script)
  • Import a design with geoprocessing
  • Localize field aliases and descriptions in the geodatabase
  • Populate workspace descriptions for a given design
  • Create a data dictionary and diagram for a given design

The ArcGIS Solutions Schema Migration Wizard can be used to help migrate from one version of an ArcGIS Solution Information Model to a newer version.

When the mapping between original and template tables and fields is decided, there are two tools for loading data into the target data structure:

Note:
For more information about loading techniques, refer to ArcGIS Help - About loading data into existing feature classes and tables.

The data loaders offer field mapping and record filtering. If a load operation does not produce the desired results, the target feature class or table can be cleared of its existing records by using the Delete Features or Delete Rows tool in ArcToolbox, as follows:

  • For Feature Classes
    In ArcToolbox, navigate to Data Management Tools > Features > Delete Features.
     
  • For Tables
    In ArcToolbox, navigate to Data Management Tools > Table > Delete Rows.


For complex data migrations, consider using the ArcGIS Data Interoperability extension or Gizinta (third-party product).
 

Note:
The ArcGIS Solutions page offers links to various resources, such as blogs, GeoNet and GitHub posts, with comments and questions from the user community. These postings are a good source of additional information on topics related to the information model and its implementation.