Why is editing attribute tables so frustrating?

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03-28-2019 06:24 AM
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Occasional Contributor

I just starting using ArcPro 2.3.1 so I'm still a bit (ok, very) loyal to Desktop. I began with a very simple project: tidy up attributes. Meaning I'm simply fixing spelling, grammar, capitalization, etc. Nothing spatial related.

Please understand, I'm not a 'hater' as much as this may come off as one. I'm focusing on making the transition just as I did from ArcView 3.2 to ArcMap. I'll grow to love Pro for what it is, I'm just experiencing these learning curves with a great gnashing of teeth!! I'm currently going thru a Pro book I got online, but skipping ahead I didn't see any help with my issues below.

I'm looking for advice from the community!

My problems/gripes are such:

1. I can't freeze fields

2. I tried using the Highlight Field function, but it doesn't work. Tried on 2 PC's and nothing.

3. I sorted one column. When I make a change, it auto re-sorts. Thus I lose my 'place' of where I was simply typing and tabbing to the next field. It's rather distracting.

4. In addition, after the auto re-sort, the field widths revert back to some sort of default width.

5. I can't quickly copy/paste cell contents from one cell to another. I have to select inside the cell and then Ctrl+V. In ArcMap I could go vertically and copy/paste about as fast as I can hit Ctrl+V. Huge bummer.

6. I can't dock the attribute table at the bottom, under all the other pinned and docked windows such as Contents and Pop-up.

7. Using the horizontal scroll bar...Scanning...ugh! I will say I found the Shift+Wheel mouse moves the table horizontally. Although, it's a different scroll acceleration than vertical scrolling. 

8. If I want to change 1 character, such as capitalizing a street name it takes 3 clicks. One to select/focus the cell, one to select text (it highlights all text in cell), one to drop the cursor between characters where I can finally fix the mistake. I believe in Desktop I could do this quicker. Two clicks.

9. I can't type in a cell, hit Enter and then begin typing in the next cell down. I have to click into that next cell...again. But, as above, the table 'regens' and shifts all over again. Argh!!

10. No Find & Replace. It was easy, albeit buggy, in Desktop. I did find the Python examples and got this to work, but it's an extremely slower process. I've already up voted for Find & Replace here in the community forums for future releases.

11. When viewing a small selection set of records in 'Show Selected Records', a wheel scroll should scroll the table horizontally, since there is not enough records to scroll vertically.

12. Highlighting records in a Selected Records view highlights the cells as yellow, just like in Desktop. But when I change a value, the yellow highlighted records are un-highlighted. In Desktop, they stay highlighted.

9 Replies
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MVP Regular Contributor

This doesn't sound like a nice and smooth UX. It is good that you have written it down. Let's hope Esri will have a look at it and come with a useful answer.

Sorry, can't help you - still using good old ArcMap for all non-automated tasks...

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Occasional Contributor

Thanks Thomas!!   Now we sit and wait. Meanwhile, I'll be sitting in Desktop

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Esri Notable Contributor

It is acknowledged that working in tables can be improved so sit tight (in ArcMap) as many of the things on that list are being worked on for Pro 2.4.

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Occasional Contributor

Most excellent Kory.

I know 2.3 just got released, and my Pro Cookbook tutorial book is already out of date, but do we have a generic timeframe for 2.4? Summer or Fall '19?

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Esri Notable Contributor

Northern Hemisphere or Southern?   For Pro 2.4, think June\July of this year.

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MVP Regular Contributor

Yeah, but to make life more complicated than it should be: both ArcMap and ArcGIS Pro are considered to be part of ArcGIS Desktop: Powerful Desktop GIS | ArcGIS Desktop 

So, good reason to stick with good old ArcGIS Desktop ArcMap for the years to come...

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New Contributor III

Which book are you using?  There are at least five out now.  Each one has a different virtue.  

You aren't missing anything in the attribute table interface. I have been using Pro for two years from 1.3 to 2.3.2 and agree with what you say about editing.  I often end up back in 10.5.1 and don't want to be there.  I am obligated to teach my coworkers to use Pro.  QGIS is not a valid alternative for all tasks here.

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Occasional Contributor

We purchased ArcGIS Pro 2.x Cookbook, by Tripp Corbin, GISP.

It's an easy follow. I'm a 20 year GIS user, so I can almost go thru it without going thru the motions. But I am, trying to learn new muscle memory.