In keeping with this weeks intelligent map and GIS food theme. Today we move up our ArcGIS Solutions Pyramid. Just as a reminder, we built the ArcGIS Solutions Pyramid as a way to categorise a ‘where’ question: from the very basic to the very advanced. See the diagram below. Yesterday we covered Basic Map Publishing in our post Is your map problem like a frozen dinner? Our focus today is the ‘Build a Map’ problem.
Imagine you are interested in adding multiple layers to a map. In real estate maybe comps with parcel data. In insurance your insured homes with flood plain data. Often this is a combination of your data with other data sets. This is a common scenario. Does building a map with multiple data-sets required geo-expertise on your part? Well that depends.
Map problem: DIY or Subway approach?
We often speak about the importance of data. The wrong data, inaccurate, or incomplete are all recipes for failure if you are looking to use intelligent maps or GIS to solve business problems. Using our example above imagine trying to assess flood risk using inaccurate flood plain data. So then how does our food analogy work here? Think about your lunchtime sandwich. You can assemble the ingredients and pull all together: bread, lettuce, tomatoes etc. If you know what you are doing the end result can be pretty good. But suppose you don’t have the time, nor the skill to produce that killer sandwich. Often people turn to others to do the work. Subway is one option. They have the ingredients and skill to produce excellent sandwiches.
This is not unlike the ‘Build a Map’ approach to solving your business problems. You can certainly take a DIY approach, or alternately look for external help to pull the pieces together. ArcGIS Online has been designed to make building a map far simpler than in the past.
Want to get keep track of new developments in the world of maps and GIS? Download a free copy of our white paper ‘From Where to There’, which provides a road map for solving problems with intelligent maps and GIS.
Author: Matt Sheehan
Matt Sheehan is a Principal at WebMapSolutions. Matt evangelizes GIS and intelligent maps around the world through keynotes, articles, tweets and his books. Follow him on Twitter:
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