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The Keyhole Markup Lanuage (KML) is a popular format for distributing GIS data and models.  KML files are usually small enough to email, and they can be opened in a variety of free viewers.  KML is an option when exporting models from CityEngine.  You may find that the models are not being displayed in the expected orientation when viewed in Google Earth.

©2012 Google and ©2012 Commonwealth of Virginia

ArcGIS and Google Earth store and  interpret KML files differently in that the Google Earth version is rotated by 180 degrees.   Because of this rotation difference, you will need to use one of the export presets  based upon the software that will be used to view the data.KML_PresetOption.jpgThe Google Earth option sets a heading correction of 180 degrees.  This allows the model to display correctly.  Keep in mind though, if you apply the Google Earth preset, the KML will not display correctly in ArcGlobe.

©2012 Google and ©2012 Commonwealth of Virginia

Timothy H. - Raster/3D Support Analyst
Service Pack 5 for ArcGIS 10.0 has been released. Please visit the ArcGIS Resource Center Blog for more information about this release: ArcGIS 10.0 Service Pack 5.

This service pack is available for download via the ArcGIS Resource Center: ArcGIS 10.0 SP5 (Desktop, Engine, and Server)

For the best experience, please download this service pack at your earliest convenience.

Service packs for other products include:
"Why does my profile graph show an elevation change of 11 feet over 1,111,111 feet?"

In general, profiles show the change in elevation of a surface along a line. They help to assess the difficulty of a trail for hiking or biking, or to evaluate the feasibility of placing a rail line along a given route.

A Profile Graph represents height on the Y axis and horizontal distance on the X axis. The unit of distance along the X axis depends upon the units of the projected coordinate system (PCS) of the elevation raster data. For example, if data is in a Universal Transverse Mercator (UTM) PCS, the unit of distance will be in meters; if data is in State Plane PCS, the unit of distance will be in feet (US) as shown in the following figure.


However, sometimes it might be inconvenient and hard to understand the  following: The elevation changes from 1,200 feet to 1,400 feet over a  distance of 400,000  feet.

This may be a little like weighing a person in ounces, or counting age in minutes…weight-300x143.png

In fact, it is more meaningful when data is displayed in the following manner: The elevation changes from 1,200 feet to 1,400 feet over a distance of 80 miles as illustrated in the following figure.feet-vs-_mile-copy-300x149.jpg

Often there is a need to display the horizontal distance on the X axis of a Profile Graph in a unit other than the PCS units of the data, so as to do a quick comparison between different units or for better understanding of the data.

Here are the steps to change the horizontal distance units (units of X axis) on a Profile Graph without changing the PCS of elevation data:

1)      Open Data Frame Properties  (View > Data Frame Properties)

2)     Click on Coordinate System Tab

3)     Click Modifyd1-252x300.png

4)      Select the desired units (miles, kilometer etc.)d2-218x300.png

5)      Click Apply.

6)     Click OK.

7)     Create a new Profile Graph.

And remember, don’t weigh yourself in ounces. Consider changing the units.

Additional links: Fundamental of creating profile graphsTarun J. - Raster Support Analyst
In ArcGIS Desktop 10.1, adding a basemap in ArcMap using the Add Basemap dialog box causes the coordinate system of the data frame to change to WGS 1984 Web Mercator (auxiliary sphere).

This is a known issue, and bug number NIM081490 can be used to check for status updates. Esri is working on a permanent solution to this issue. In the meantime, please refer to the technical article, “Adding a basemap changes the coordinate system of the data frame to Web Mercator (auxiliary sphere),” for more information on the issue and a workaround.Chris F. - User Advocacy Group

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