Editing in Web applications

Web-based editing allows a larger group of people to add and improve on your data. These include field-workers, analysts in other departments of your company, or perhaps even crowd-sourced volunteers who may be able to make valuable contributions to your data given a simple editing interface.

Web editing requires some coordination of client-side actions (such as moving the vertices of a polygon on the screen) with actions on the server (such as committing the edit to the database). If you're a novice programmer, you'll find it easier to start with a premade editing widget (or task). The ArcGIS APIs for JavaScript, Flex, and Silverlight, as well as the .NET and Java Web ADFs, include widgets to help you get started with editing. If you want more custom editing functionality, you can add on to the widgets or code your own editing solution that employs the same lower-level components used by the widgets.

Editing in JavaScript, Flex, and Silverlight applications

The ArcGIS APIs for JavaScript, Flex, and Silverlight (or the REST-based APIs) introduce Web editing capabilities at version 2.0. These APIs include widgets to help you get started right away with editing. They also include helper classes and widgets that you can use to build your own editing interface.

Web editing in the REST-based APIs works with feature services, which originate from map services that have the Feature Access capability enabled. You can define feature templates in the map, which represent predefined feature types that might be most often created by editors. For example, to prepare for editing roads, you might configure templates for Controlled Access Freeway, Other Divided Highway, State Highway, and Local Road. Users of your application can then select from one of the template choices instead of configuring the attributes themselves. This results in a simpler editing experience and less opportunity for error.

The REST-based APIs also use the geometry service to support editing. The geometry service can create, cut, and reshape features. It can also perform integrity checks, such as making sure polygon boundaries do not cross themselves.

Editing in .NET and Java applications

The .NET and Java Web ADFs contain an editing task that you can add to your Web applications. This task works with a map service in your application and uses ArcObjects behind the scenes to apply the edits. If you want to bypass the task, you can also edit data directly with ArcObjects using the Web ADF as an access point.

The Web ADF editing task does not work with feature services and therefore cannot take advantage of feature templates. However, it does have the intelligence to honor attribute domains, and it offers feature choices based on unique value symbology in the map.

To learn more about Web ADF tasks for editing, see Editor task