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Spatial Data Diagnosis: Marco and the Geographic Transformation

Blog series on reviewing spatial data and identifying broken files and issues, including finding the geographic transformation and Coordinate Reference System CRS for each Geographic Information System GIS dataset.

Welcome back to another edition of Ask Marco! Okay, sorry. I meant #MarcoMonday. This isn’t the beginnings of a "Dear Abby" column…or is it?

We are continuing our path down the Data Diagnosis Q + A road this week by meandering into geographic transformation territory. We will cover spatial references in a future post, but for now…let’s figure out the best method for answering the following question:

How many maps are using non-standard geographic transformations?

Document Derring-Do

Whether you are looking for a count or specifics of those ArcGIS Map Documents using geographic transformations, Integrated Marco Commander is the way to go. With the help of the marco document tool, you can pull a variety of details – bookmarks, spatial reference, etc. Shown below in the Integrated Marco Mystic interface, this tool does not require additional run options (such as the specification of file types) to successfully pull these details.

Tool within the Integrated Marco Mystic and Integrated Marco Commander application that allows a user to inventory the Coordinate Reference System CRS of Geographic Information System GIS data.

Once this tool is run against your Marco Database, the GEOGRAPHIC_TRANSFORMATION table within the database will be populated with all of the answers to your wildest questions. Let’s take a second to dissect these answers, shall we?

The GEOGRAPHIC_TRANSFORMATION table provides you with the ID values for CONTAINER, DATA_FRAME, and GEOG_TRANS. The most valuable pieces of information here is CONTAINER. This, of course, only holds value if you actually want to know which ArcGIS Map Documents to which this list refers. The ID values provided may be mapped back to those outlined in the CONTAINER table.

View of Marco Database with geographic transformation details for spatial data as discovered by Integrated Marco Mystic and Integrated Marco Commander applications.

Other than that, the name of the geographic transformation is provided for obvious reasons. Where’s the fun in knowing your ArcGIS Map Documents are using transformations if you don’t know what they are? This allows you to assess what the most commonly used types are and which ones deviate from the norm.

Want just a number rather than the nitty gritty deets? This table reports only those files that match this criteria so you are guaranteed to have a count that is representative of your data inventory.

When it comes to analyzing your inventory, you can certainly “count” on Marco.

Too much?

Transformation Trajectory

Does this solution include all the details you would wish to gather during this process? If not, what other pieces of information would you like to pull coupled with geographic transformations?


Explore the Series

When it comes to reviewing your Geographic Information System (GIS) data and inventories, there are questions you should have at the ready. Discover common questions we ask of our spatial data to get the most out of these resources - and better yet, how we actually achieve answers. Explore the cheat sheet here and dive in to each post in the series below.


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