International Mine Awareness Day (2.7)

04-03-2018 12:58 PM
Esri Notable Contributor
16 12 5,379

On 8 December 2005, the General Assembly declared that 4 April of each year shall be observed as the International Day for Mine Awareness and Assistance in Mine Action.

It called for continued efforts by States, with the assistance of the United Nations and relevant organizations, to foster the establishment and development of national mine-action capacities in countries where mines and explosive remnants of war constitute a serious threat to the safety, health and lives of the civilian population, or an impediment to social and economic development at the national and local levels.

The Geneva International Centre for Humanitarian Demining has leveraged Survey123 for ArcGIS over the last year and a half to capture the location of reported explosive devices, record hazardous areas and interview and support victims and survivors. We devote this update to GICHD and to all organizations committed to make a difference for those who suffer the long lasting consequences of war.

To learn more about GIHCD and their work with Survey123, watch this video:

Next, lets describe the highlights for this update:

Web Designer Enhancements

Starting with this release, you can add signature questions into your surveys, right from Web Designer.

Signature questions are supported in both Web Forms as well as the Survey123 field app and present to the end user a simple black-over-white signature pad.

Signatures are stored as attachments, like other images.

Rules: Rules in Web Designer allow you to define simple conditional statements to control the visibility of questions in your form. Using rules, you can dramatically simplify your forms, ensuring that users are only presented questions relevant to them.  To define a rule, you need to first select a question of type Single Choice, Dropdown, Likert or Rating. At that point, the Set Rule option will be enabled so you can define what questions will be shown when a particular choice or rating is selected. Up until this update, rules were only supported in Web Designer for single choice questions.

Autocomplete: You can now enable autocomplete on questions of type dropdown.  This is particularly useful when working with long choice lists.

Compact choice lists: A new 'horizontal compact' appearance has been added to single and multiple choice questions. Use this appearance if you want the choices to be arranged horizontally, but preserving as much space as possible.

Date questions: Date questions have been enhanced in Web Designer so you can control if the calendar control should let users define a complete date (Year, Month and Day), or simply the year or the year and the month.

Bug fixes and other enhancements:

  • ENH-000111156: Add support for pulldata() in geopoints in the Survey123 Web Form
  • BUG-000111357: Clicking the collaborate option for a survey in the website returns an error, "Survey does not exists or is inaccessible" when labels are kept empty in the corresponding survey form.
  • BUG-000111377: Trying to publish a form using the Survey123 site containing multiple choices, with a choice containing more than 32 characters, fails to publish the survey and results in the error, "Unable to publish the survey. Length >32"
  • BUG-000111206: hide-input appearance does not work when taking the survey in the web app
  • Multiple issues addressed when using Web Forms in IE11 Web Browser.

Survey123 Field App and Connect

Version 2.7 of the Survey123 field app and Connect does not come with major new functionality, but it is loaded with many fixes and enhancements. Lets start with a selection of critical fixes:

  • BUG-000096762: Feature Services published from Survey123 Connect for ArcGIS do not define a "Display Field" in the feature layer rest endpoint. This bug prevented surveys published from Survey123 Connect from working within Collector for ArcGIS Android. It also caused table preview issues in some versions of Portal for ArcGIS.
  • BUG-000108943 Required values for integer, decimal, geopoint, and DateTime questions in a Repeat section can be submitted blank. Also raised by Johan Ekenstedt in GeoNet: Required geopoints in repeats doesn´t work 
  • BUG-000110669: This bug caused the form not to center the screen on empty required questions after validation, making it difficult for end users to identify which required questions had been left empty. Also raised in GeoNet: Survey123 2.0 Change Question 
  • BUG-000109967:  Offline maps not available in the Inbox, Sent and Outbox. Now fixed in this release. Also raised in GeoNet: How to use TPK on Inbox map? 
  • BUG-000108975: When previewing a survey in Survey123 Connect for ArcGIS, validating the input for the first selection in a cascading select will not function as desired. Fixed!
  • BUG-000110311 In iOS operating system, copying sent data to a new survey and deleting an attachment results in the attachment missing from subsequent copy from sent. Addressed.
  • BUG-000106661 Updating a sent survey that is connected to a feature service from the ArcGIS Server that is federated with Portal (not hosted) will result in the following error: Unable to Complete Operation. Error code 400. Fixed.
  • Fix-Heather Follis: This fix accommodates cases where the Sent box could not display submission error messages. More details at: Our completed surveys are not sending. They stay in outbox with red exclamation and no errors. 
  • Fix-John Walls: A fix to address situations where certain surveys would cause Survey123 Connect to crash.More details here: Survey123 Connect Crashing When Opening Survey  Thanks John for reporting.
  • Fix-Chris Shuck: With this fix, a survey can include multiple expressions extracting EXIF metadata from images. More details at Pulldata function on multiple photos freezes the app
  • Fix-Eric Page: With this fix, the Inbox now properly displays and sorts Inbox records based on submission time, when the Inbox makes use of a query. Survey123 Inbox Sorting and Filtering 
  • Fix-David Rebot: Great find by David: Default values were not being applied if the autocomplete appearance was in use. Addressed in this release. ISSUE with Autocomplete interfering with Defaulting Date/Time fields 
  • Fix-Shane Clark: This one was an oldie that we had to accommodate. Input masks now no longer make your questions required. body::esri:inputMask should not require input   Shane: your finding was a good one too...

And here a list of the most relevant enhancements in the Survey123 field app and Connect:

  • Enhancements to annotate appearance: We introduced smart sketching in our 2.4 release and many of you are leveraging it today. In this update we incorporate two popular requests:
    1. Allow end users to sketch on top of existing images from the photo gallery
    2. Allow end users to rotate images before sketching
  • Optionally disable Web Form generation in Connect: A new option has been added in the Publish dialog in Connect so you can disable the Web Form generation. This is handy when you have lists with many thousands of choices in your XLSForm.
  • UTC offset property: ArcGIS Hosted Feature Services store date and time information in UTC. This causes issues in some applications (like ArcMap) that are not UTC-aware, when people work across multiple time-zones. To compensate for this, we have extended the pulldata function so you can store the UTC-Offset of the device from which the data is being submitted as a GIS attribute. The syntax is as follows: pulldata("@property", 'utcoffset').
  • Calculate select_ones: Last but not least, you can now calculate values in select_one questions.  That is, you can trigger a selection on a select_one question from a calculation. There have been multiple threads on this in GeoNet including: Criteria / Calculation Based Select_One Auto-Population , Pre-populate Select One/Select Multiple fields from CSV , Auto-Populate Select One Question Based on a Previous Select One Question  and default depending on previous answer
  • Go to the top of a repeat on new record: Did you ever feel like you were stuck at the bottom of a repeat when adding a new record? Did you ever feel like you wanted to be taken back to the top?  Well... 2.7 does it now for you! Thanks to all of your feedback on this one too:Have a new repeat scroll to top , Adding record in repeat stays at bottom of group. , Have a new repeat scroll to top.

If you are a developer building your own version of Survey123, you can also now download the latest code from AppStudio for ArcGIS.

Beyond 2.7

Looking at next steps beyond 2.7, we have already a handful of projects that have made sufficient progress as to be shared in a near-term road map. Our next major release will be 3.0, which we envision shipping around July 2018.   If needed, we may squeeze 2.8 and 2.9 as maintenance releases with critical fixes, but 3.0 in July will be the update with the most relevant new features, of which I want to highlight:

  • Custom Form Reports: Our blog post  anticipated this feature, which is currently available to all of you in Beta.  We are working hard to move this feature into general release and incorporate into it bulk report capabilities.
  • Support for nested repeats: This feature is available for testing already through our Early Adopter Program and allow you to author surveys that have repeats within repeats.
  • Enhanced support for external GNSS receivers: At the moment, you can use external GNSS receivers with Survey123, but only in a limited way. For example, you cannot extract key metadata from the receiver such as  VDOP, HDOP, Number of Satellites or the Fix Type...  With the 3.0 update our intent is to extend the pulldata() function so you can also extract this important metadata and store it along with the features you capture.  We also plan to provide support for RTK corrections. We are working towards having this feature available for testing in our Early Adopter Program around June.
  • Webhook integration: An earlier post described this work in more detail. Available for testing today through the Early Adopter Program.
  • GeoSearch in the Survey123 field app map widget: Check out this video in our Early Adopter Program for details. Available for testing now.
  • Support for Web Maps, Vector Tiles and Mobile Map Packages: This is  a big deal as it will make maps for geopoint questions much better looking, useful and lightweight.  Looking at having this available for testing around June.
  • Pages: While Pages are not officially supported yet, we continue working on improving this feature.  Starting with 2.7 you will notice that the page navigation has been vastly improved, although there are multiple areas that still need more work before we can call it 'ready'.  If you are into pages, do not hesitate providing your feedback via the Beta forum in our Early Adopter Program.

A lot in the plate as  you can see for 3.0. Our focus however it is not going to deviate from listening carefully to all your feedback through this GeoNet Group, so keep your questions and suggestions coming!

There are many other ideas in our backlog including survey pages, support for polygons and lines, on-premises setup of all components of Survey123 and many other enhancements which remain as high priority in our list, but will see the light after the 3.0 release.