Thursday, July 2, 2015

Homeland Security: Protect and The Boston Marathon

We are wrapping-up our study on MEDS (Minimum Essential Datasets) and the Department of Homeland Security. This week we completed our maps using the Military Template by compiling layers of data on Critical Infrastructure around Boston for the 2012 Marathon. The overall task was to identify Critical Infrastructure, such as Hospitals, School, Dams and Airports and to analyze various Line-of-Sight locations around the finishline where security cameras could be placed. There were quite a few tasks to accomplish for this lab, such as, Analyze Data; add the MEDS data we compiled last week to our scenario map for this week; create a buffer around the event site; create a security buffer around critical infrastructure; identify and secure ingress and egress routes; generate hillshade; create surveillance points; generate viewshed; create line-of-sight graphs and a view in 3D. This last part was very cool and I learned quite a bit doing this so I wold like to list my actions and steps for this last part:

1-       To Create the line-of-sight profile graph, I had to first find where the tool was
a.       I asked myself, “Where is this?  Is this on the Draw toolbar...???” I had to Google ArcGIS Help to confirm where this “Tool” was located.
b.      I selected the Draw Arrow (next to the Drawing dropdown/pulldown window directly under the "Draw" title). I thought, “this can’t be that hard.”
c.       I thought wrong.

2-       Initially, the option was not available for me to select. That is, I could not select the “Profile Graph” on the 3D Analyst toolbar.
a.       Finally, the Create Profile Graph became available for me to select and it was not greyed out.
b.      I think I had to be in the Layout view not Data View.

3-       The Blue handles appeared when I double-clicked on the point. However, I did not need to double click. When I did this a second time for step  7 number 9. I clicked one time and the blue handles appeared and a box was placed around the line.
4-       After making my box around the surveillance point of my choice, the Graph popped up and I was able to select properties and enter a title and subtitle. I did this for several points.
5-       I exported the Graphs for later use and saved what I had before moving on to the next step.

      To create the View in 3D, I had to use ArcScene
a.       The first time I did this I did not notice that the ArcScene icon was on the 3D Analyst toolbar, so I opened ArcScene from my desktop.
7-       I added the layers as instructed and I recall thinking, I vaguely remember doing something with the Base Heights tab a long time ago...
8-      I almost missed the step, “Make sure the Factor to convert layer elevation values to scene units is set to Custom 1.0 and click OK” but I caught it just before exiting.
9-      Then it was back to ArcMap to select, copy and paste the line-of-sight from each surveillance point. This was difficult at first to get to work. However, after I did this a couple of times, all was good.
10-   This was an excellent learning point going back and forth between ArcMap and ArcScene.
a.       I saved my work and tried to export it as a 3D file (finishline_lineosight_gc.wrl). But, this did not seem to be what I wanted

b.   So, I tried again and selected export as 2D and then as a .jpg (finishline_lineosight_gc.jpg)—much better this time.

11-   After this it was time to compile my map.

This was a very involved lab that took two weeks to complete I learned a lot these past weeks and I am sure I will continue to advance in my skills and knowledge.  

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