New Britain Release (3.3)

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02-26-2019 03:40 PM
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New Britain is the largest island in the Bismark archipelago of Papua New Guinea. William Dampier, takes credit for being the first British man to land on this island. This happened on February 27, 1700. Since then we call this island New Britain (Nova Britannia at the time). Both Wiliam Dampier and New Britain are fascinating. This island, of volcanic origin, was populated by two main indigenous groups: the Papuans who arrived tens of thousands of years ago, and the Austronesians, who joined the party around 2000 years ago. The island hosts remarkable traditional cultures. Still today, over 10 different Papuan languages  are spoken in the island and as for the Austronesians languages, we count more than 40! William Dampier is known for being the first man to circumnavigate the world three times. He grew as a pirate attacking Spanish ships in America and then became a successful navigator and explorer. Dampier documented winds, tides and currents that were critical for future explorations by James Cook and Horation Nelson. His natural history observations were also highly influential on works of Alexander Von Humboldt and Charles Darwin.

With our 3.3 update, we celebrate the adventures of William Dampier and his landing over 300 years ago to the island today known as New Britain.

Enhanced support for GNSS receivers in the Survey123 field app

Starting with version 3.3, you can establish a direct connection between the Survey123 field app and your GNSS receiver. This is useful for several reasons:

  • More accurate location data:  By leveraging dedicated high accuracy GNSS hardware, you can substantially improve the quality of the location data you capture with your smart forms.  There is a wide range of GNSS receivers, some of them able to produce, if used properly, sub-meter and sub-centimeter accuracy. 
  • Better understanding of the quality of the data: Having more accurate location data is not enough. It is also important to understand how accurate that data is.  Most GNSS receivers are able to provide important information that describe how the locations you are getting were produced. This includes things like the type of fix (RTK Fixed, RTK Float, GPS, Differential GPS, SBAS...), the differential age, reference station ID and many others.  With version 3.3 of Survey123 and above, you can select which of these properties are important to you and store them as GIS attributes in the feature layer columns of your choice. For a complete list of all the location metadata you can extract from your location data with Survey123 refer to the extract geopoint values help topic.
  • Custom validation rules: You can use all the GNSS metadata described above to create custom data validation rules that get triggered while the data collection is happening. This is critical, as it can save many trips back to the field! It is important to note that you can use all the power of XLSForms to build sophisticated expressions that take advantage of this metadata.

In this initial release, we have thoroughly tested GNSS receivers built by a number of vendors including Leica, Eos Positioning Systems, Bad Elf, SXblue, and Trimble, although it technically can work with other receivers as long as they output NMEA sentences. Our choose a receiver help topic includes more information regarding currently supported hardware.

To support direct connections to external GNSS receivers, you will notice we have introduced several changes in the Survey123 field app. The Settings dialog in the app now includes options to connect to external location sensors via Bluetooth and network ports. For each connection you can also set user preferences such as a custom name for your device, the height of the antenna and handy visual and audio alerts to warn users in case the connection between the GNSS receiver and your device is interrupted.

Our XLSForm support has also been expanded so you can include in your form expressions to help work with the GNSS metadata in real time.  This really opens a wealth of possibilities for you to use this information to design soft and hard data validation constraints in your forms.  The geopoint help topic in our doc describes in more detail how to take advantage of this.

Point to Point Measurements with Spike® and the Survey123 field app

We introduced support for the Spike laser range-finder in March 2018.  Spike is an excellent complement to Survey123, allowing you to quickly bring laser-accurate measurements into your forms. Jim Moore and Brett Stokes, who recently joined the Survey123 team, put together this video to demonstrate the basics of bringing measurements from Spike into Survey123.

In this release, we are bringing support for the Point to Point (P2P) measurement mode which was missing in our initial implementation. P2P is a very handy way to calculate distances between two objects because it does not require you to identify a 2D plane on which to measure. In P2P mode you can simply aim Spike at the first object, such as the side of a house, and take a photo. Then, aim at the second object, such as a tree or fence, and take a second photo. Spike will calculate the distance between those two objects and bring that value into your Survey123 form. You can also use Point to Point to measure the height of an object such as a tree, streetlight or building.

If you are already using Spike with Survey123 and wish to try Point to Point measurements, make sure you upgrade your Spike app from the store with the latest version.

For more details on how Spike and Survey123 work together, check out thehttps://community.esri.com/groups/survey123/blog/2018/03/06/using-spike-with-survey123-for-arcgis blog post.

Date/Time question type in web designer

A new Date/Time question type has been added in web designer.  This will help you capture both a date and a time in one single row, saving vertical space in your forms. Within web designer you can set a default value for this question, either selecting a static value, or the exact time when the form is open.  You can also set validation rules to constrain inputs to a time window.

Date-Time Question type in Survey123 web designer

Better field and choice naming in web designer

If you never liked auto-generated field names such as field_0, field_1... in your Survey123 feature layers, you will want to pay attention to this one. Let me start with a bit of context first:  When you publish a survey in web designer, we create on your behalf a feature layer field for every question in your form.  These fields are used later to store responses to your survey. Up until this release, the name of these fields followed a simple field_0, field_1 pattern. This was typically never an issue when using the Survey123 web site to inspect your data, but it was not ideal when exporting results into Excel, CSV, or when configuring web hooks.

Starting with this update, a more friendly name will be given to these fields based on the label of your questions. The following animation compares what an auto-generated feature layer schema looked like before, compared to what you will get now.

Field and choice names are now derived from your question and choice labels. Given that there are some constraints that apply to the names that can be given to fields in a feature layer, you will notice that your labels will not be used literally. For example, spaces will be replaced with underscores (_), very long labels will be shortened and special characters will be eliminated.

Using the Modify Schema dialog you can optionally fine tune the names of fields and choices to your liking, although remember that you will not be able to make adjustments in the schema once the fields have been added to the feature layer.

The option to Modify Schema in the Publish Survey Dialog has also been made more visible as a reminder of this important step before you publish your survey.

Delete and edit existing records for survey owners

As a survey owner, I am sure you always submit a couple of records to test out your survey designs, immediately checking values in the Data tab. You can now easily delete, and even edit values right from the Survey123 web site. You no longer need to use a separate tool to do that. All you need to do is to select the records in the table view, and then choose the Delete or Edit options in the right panel to make the changes you want.

Edit and delete records, right from within the Survey123 web site

At this moment in time, the option to edit records will not be available for surveys published from Survey123 Connect, but we are looking to relaxing this limitation in the future.

Other fixes and enhancements

Survey123 web site:

  • ENH-000107831 Provide the ability to edit the survey submission "Thank you" screen seen in the browser when the survey is published from Survey123 Connect
  • Import custom themes from other surveys.
  • For text questions, in the Analyze tab, you can now choose to display a list of word counts or complete responses.
  • Much improved user experience for configuring custom report templates.
  • BUG-000119133 Field aliases in a survey in the Survey123 for ArcGIS application are not respected in single choice and drop-down lists.
  • BUG-000098360 When downloading data from a Survery123 survey that was made using Survey123 web designer, the field names are converted to {field_1}, {field_2}, ... instead of honoring the name in the data table.
  • BUG-000103150 Surveys created in Survey123 web designer using drop-down choices display 'choice1, choice2, ...' when exported to a CSV file or a shapefile.
  • BUG-000105778 Survey question choices from single choice questions do not correctly translate when exported to CSV or shapefile from surveys that were created via Survey123 web designer.
  • BUG-000114116 When using a custom template that writes out results from related and non-related attributes from a survey, the non-related records do not populate the template table.
  • BUG-000113548 When an audio attachment is included in the survey, the Survey123 for ArcGIS website fails to generate a report.

Survey123 field app and Connect

  • Allow users to zoom beyond level 18 if the tile package includes more detailed levels.
  • BUG-000119481 When creating a Survey123 for ArcGIS survey with an existing feature service, the float or single field types do not auto populate in the XLSForm created
  • BUG-000110786 When signing in to the Survey123 for ArcGIS (iOS) app configured with an IWA portal, the app uses the username and password entered at the beginning of the app session for all subsequent sign-in attempts.
  • BUG-000119847 Date questions in certain languages are not displaying the calendar correctly
  • BUG-000119899 Integer type questions with the "spinner" appearance type do not work
  • ENH-000105170 In Survey123, allow users to change the Location Provider, from the internal receiver to an external receiver.
  • ENH-000109937 Provide an indicator within the Survey123 interface to display which GPS unit the app is using.
56 Comments
Occasional Contributor III

I do have a question about BUG-000114116.I was actually the person who submitted this case to get this logged as a bug. I have a report template that I just tried testing, but was unable to get this to work.

Does this bug fix also apply when attempting to write attributes from a nested repeat to the same row of a table? I can attach a sample Word template if that would better help explain this question.

Esri Frequent Contributor

Hi Erica. Thanks for your note. We will contact  you directly to clarify the details.

New Contributor

It seems since the release of 3.3 our custom reports page no longer works. Could have been something with the update? I have even tried to just use the generic one that survey generates but it tells me that my phrasing is wrong for certain parameters and I can not seem to get it to spit out a report with all the information. It seems to be happening with 5 random parameters. Once you remove them it prints fine. 

Esri Regular Contributor

Hi Lucas,

Would you mind sharing the exact error message raised by the custom report feature? We had a known issue that the report template cannot work if the field name inside a repeat contains the repeat name (parent layer name), not sure if it's the issue you've encountered.

New Contributor

Here is the exact error message. That parameter is a hidden calculated category. If I remove it goes to Long, then to the photos and photo descriptions for the next two sections with the same error. We have been using this template for about 3 weeks now and never had a problem until a day or two ago.

Thanks,

Lucas

New Contributor

After reviewing the issue you have stated I think that is what is happening. Do you know of a solution around this? I don't think I can change the property names of the repeat or the parameters in the survey without losing data?

New Contributor III

We are in the same situation and see the "Failed to parse..." error for numerous surveys.  The fields within the repeat contain part of the repeat name but are not exact. 

Esri Regular Contributor

Hi Lucas,

Thanks for the confirmation. 

A tricky workaround is to create a new survey without the field name inside a repeat contains the repeat name and then import the data into the new survey. It's inconvenient unless you have to generate reports anyway. We have planned a hotfix to address this issue, it will be available in the week after the Dev Summit.

Please let us know if you have any other concern. Thanks.

Esri Regular Contributor

Hi Kevin,

Thank you for the feedback. 

Would you mind sharing the field name and the repeat name to help us confirm we have this case included in the fix?

New Contributor

I am not exactly sure how to import data from one survey to another? I think we might wait until the fix comes in but it would be nice to know how to import the data in case of another problem like this or if we want to make changes within a repeat.

Thanks again,

Lucas Graham

Occasional Contributor II

Hi,

I just downloaded the latest version of the Spike survey template for Survey123 and I keep getting an error message after I take a picture to perform a calculation. I am using the latest versions of both Survey123 (3.3) and Spike on my iPhone. 

Thanks! 

New Contributor III

Sure thing Zhifang,

One form has a repeat named “Presumed_ACM”. Troublesome fields within the repeat are:

· Presumed_ACM_Descrip

· Presumed_ACM_Location

· Presumed_ACM_Quantity

Another form has a repeat named “Photos” . The troublesome fields within this repeat is:

· Photos_adtl

Additionally, I am having trouble with another form that was just fine prior to the update but now the print to word report changes all values in the parent section of the form to zero. This happens for strings, dates, and integers. The problem appears to be due to the fact that the form_id value (in the xls form settings tab) contains a hyphen. A copy of this survey works perfect when I remove the hyphen. What do you think the chances are that this could also be addressed in the upcoming hotfix? Since this is an active form, I am trying to weigh making a copy of the form and working with that or waiting for the fix. I am confident that I can import all the previously submitted data to the new form but not sure how I would handle importing the photographs if that was deemed necessary.

Thanks,

Kevin

Occasional Contributor II

Hi,

 

I just downloaded the latest version of the Spike survey template for Survey123 and I keep getting an error message after I take a picture to perform a calculation. I am using the latest versions of both Survey123 (3.3) and Spike on my iPhone. 

 

Occasional Contributor II

UPDATE:

I was successfully able to collect data using the update Spike Survey123 template and the Spike device. I am not sure what caused my initial error on my original iPhone. I will see if I resolve it by uninstalling and reinstalling all the applications.  

Occasional Contributor II

FINAL UPDATE:

Uninstalling and reinstalling did the trick on my original device. I believe my issue was caused during my initial setup when I turned on the Save to Photos option for the Spike application. I made sure not to turn on that option on during the next setups and everything seems to be working properly between Survey123 and Spike.

Thanks

Esri Regular Contributor

Hi Lucas, 

To import data from one survey to another, you may create a new survey from the same XLSForm file (and fix the field/repeat names), after publishing, use the export feature in ArcGIS Online to export your data as e.g. a File GeoDatabase, then use the append feature in ArcGIS Online to append the exported data to the new feature service behind the new survey.

Esri Regular Contributor

Hi Kevin,

Thanks for sharing the field/repeat names, I'm sure this a case we've covered in the coming hotfix.

Regarding the second issue, it's out of our radar currently, would you mind sharing the XLSForm (.xlsx) and the report template file (.docx) with us to investigate? We can give you feedback once we know what's issue is. 

You can send the files to zwang@esri.com and zliu@esri.com, it would be great if you can minimize those files as long as they can reproduce the issue.

Thanks,

Zhifang 

Occasional Contributor

The issue Constraint message in Web Form persists during correct answer was not fixed with this release!

Also, it looks like a default value for a date field ( e.g.(today()) is now not being added on load to the webform. This was working in an early Feb release.

Esri Frequent Contributor

Hi Treg.

Thanks for your comment.

  • Constraint messages: Scheduled for fix in 3.4 (May 2019)
  • today() in default. We will look into this. In the meantime, if you use instead once(today()) in the calculation column it should work well for you.

Zhifang Wang

Esri Regular Contributor

Hi Treg,

Thanks for your feedback.

I found if you create and publish a survey in the web designer, in the converted XLSForm, the today() and now() works as expected in the default column for date, time, datetime question. However, if you set them in a survey and publish the survey in Survey123 Connect (even republish the one created from the web designer), they do not work anymore.

I've logged an issue in the dev repo for investigation, will get to you once if we have any update.  

Occasional Contributor

One of my user is reporting that Survey123 crash when trying to download a new Survey from the link I sent him. He is using Survey123 3.3.64 on Android

My survey works fine when opened on the Windows version of Survey123. And he was able to download it with previous version.

Frequent Contributor II

Seems to be a bug with constraints and repeats in 3.3

Add a Constraint to a select_one field that is in a repeat

Pick a value from the list then add a repeat

Go back to repeat 1 using the arrow and the value you entered disappears.

A calc on the field also blanks itself back out when  hitting the back arrow

Remove the constraint only and it works fine.  I tried all kinds of constraints and it always does it.

This a biggie.  Thanks

Esri Frequent Contributor

Hi Doug,

Can you send through an example xlsx form that reproduces this issue, and I will take a further look.

Phil.

Esri Contributor

Hi Kevin,

For the docx report issue with hyphen in form id, we are able to reproduce it and working on it already. Hopefully we will fix it in the hotfix for 3.3 release which currently targeting on Mar 14th. I will keep you update if there's any change in plan.

Thanks,

Jody Zheng Liu

Frequent Contributor II

It is on all of mine but I can send one.  But I cannot post it and I cannot find your email.

thanks

New Contributor III

The files are in your email. I am grateful for you looking into this issue.

Thanks,

Kevin

Esri Frequent Contributor

Hi Doug. I have sent you a private message with my email address. Thanks.

Occasional Contributor

This is very discouraging to hear. The number one request that my agency would have of the Survey123 team is to maintain a stable product over adding new functionality.

Please, please stop breaking stuff that previously worked when new versions are released! Don't get me wrong, I love having new features like the GNSS receivers compatibility with Survey123 but it's embarrassing to have to explain to my customers, why their existing form is no longer working or that we have to wait another 3 months for a  fix that was promised 3 months ago.

And if these bugs, that rollback previous functionality, do inadvertently slip thru the testing before a new release (understandable on occasion), then the answer should always be 'hotfix in x days/weeks" not "we'll get this fixed the next major release 3 months from now"...and then after patiently waiting for the release to happen (because there is no status report on what's changing with the next version until it's actually released and provided like above), it turns out that no, the thing that was broken with a new release back in October actually won't be fixed until May.

 To recap the 2 issues:

-default dates (created from connect and applied to webforms) broke with this release

-constraint messages (created from connect and applied to webforms) broke with a release in early October

Esri Frequent Contributor

Hi Doug,

 

Thanks for sending through the survey, I got to the bottom of the problem you are encountering. This appears to be a bug recently introduced. Basically, it is due to the use of the autocomplete appearance and a constraint on the same question inside a repeat. When you navigate to a new repeat record or add a new repeat record, and navigate back again, then values become null where autocomplete appearance and a constraint on the same question have been used.

 

As a workaround, if you remove either the constraint, or the autocomplete appearance, it will work as expected.

Phil.

Esri Frequent Contributor

Hi treg christopher‌   We appreciate your comments. This feedback is important to us.  We are actively looking at the problem and looking at  ways to prevent this type of regressions in the future.  For an immediate resolution to this problem in your particular form, I suggest you delete the expression today() from the default column and you replace it  with the expression once(today()) in the calculation column.  This should take care of this particular problem while we apply a fix.

New Contributor II

Hi Zheng,

our costumers are experiencing both the previous BUGs and I'm happy to know you are already handling them!

Unfortunately, we are experiencing one additional issue causing  "failed to parse..." that I hope you are already investigating.

It seems that location questions do not support double options "mapSettings" and "size" as described by Guide link

Feature Report Template gives following parsing exception:

It is a location question inside a repeat, printed from HFS belonging to an ArcGIS Enterprise 10.6

The strange thing is that the issue disappears in 2 cases:

  • if only one option between size and mapsettings is used or
  • if no conditional statement (${if()} ... ${/}) is applied to previous group repeats (not the repeat which picture_locations belogns) Those conditional statements were working without issues before last release.

I hope this information can help you understand the parsing error and address this issue in your investigations.

Are you already aware of any issue like this one?

Thanks in advance.

Esri Contributor

Hi Alessandro,

Thanks a lot for your feedback. I created a test survey but unable to reproduce the issue:

https://survey123.arcgis.com/surveys/9d22005f85db4a2587c675e76c9ab23d/data 

You can use the template "MapSettings_withCondition.docx" to print. Here is the xlsx form and template file.

Please let me know if my settings are wrong, and it would be really appreciated if you could share the xlsx and template file of customer's survey.

Thanks,

Jody Zheng Liu

New Contributor II

Hi Zheng,

I sent you a subset of data, a template that triggers the issue and 2 templates that do not trigger the issue. I Hope this helps you reproduce it.

As this seems a more specific case, mail me if you need more information.

Thanks,

Alessandro

Occasional Contributor III

Hi Ismael,

Thanks for the call earlier and explanation about the proper syntax to use to fix this issue. Using the ${layerName.fieldName} instead of just ${fieldName} solved my problem. I'm now able to print reports and successfully have information from different related tables print to one table row.


Thanks so much!

Erica

Occasional Contributor

Thanks Ismael, I tested your workaround (replace today() in default with once(today()) in calculation) and can confirm it does seem to be working in a webform when published from the latest Connect.

Looking forward to having the constraint message issue solved as it will help with problems with 1) dates (it is surprising how many people are accidentally creating an obs date year of 1919 instead of 2019!..and this is in turn is causing a Python 3.6 datetime.datetime.fromtimestamp() method to fail) and 2) being able to constrain the location selected: https://community.esri.com/thread/228352-use-constraint-on-location-to-prevent-default-loc-from-bein... and https://community.esri.com/groups/survey123/blog/2017/10/26/limiting-extent-in-which-input-point-can....

Esri Contributor

Hi Kevin,

We will delay the release of hotfix to next week, instead of 14th. Sorry for any inconvenience to you.

Thanks,

Jody Zheng Liu

New Contributor III

Thank you, I appreciate the status update.

Kevin

New Contributor III

I published several surveys using Survey123 Connect for ArcGIS on 27th February.  There had been testing carried out prior to this on test versions of the surveys (including field length restrictions using the bind::esri:fieldLength column in the Excel spreadsheet used to define the surveys). 

The field length restrictions are now not being honoured in Survey123 web app, although work fine in Connect and the Survey123 mobile app.  In the web app the user can enter more characters than the field allows and they are only warned of this when they submit the survey.  The error message doesn't identify which field is the problem, which is causing us some issues.

Survey123 field length issue

Has the update that was applied on 26th February had an effect on field length restrictions in the web app?

Esri Esteemed Contributor

Hi Josh,

To our knowledge, the update did not affect field length restrictions; I am also seeing the expected behavior in samples I have tested with.  Can you provide the XLS file of the form to test?

Esri Contributor

Hi Kevin,

The hotfix is released, could you please try again to see if your issues are fixed?

Thanks,

Jody

Esri Contributor

Hi Treg,

We have released the hotfix which should fix the issue with today() in default. Could you please try again with your survey?

Thanks,

Jody Zheng Liu

Esri Contributor

Hi Lucas,

We have released a hotfix which should fix this issue, could you please give it another try?

Thanks,

Jody Zheng Liu

New Contributor III

Yes, I tested on two random surveys that were having issues and the print to report now works. Thank you for your attention in rectifying this issue.

Kevin

New Contributor

Good Morning,

Everything seems to be working perfectly! 

Thanks,

Lucas Graham

Occasional Contributor

Thanks, I've tested it out and today() in default is now working again in the webform when published from Connect. Thanks for the hotfix!

New Contributor

Hi!

There seems to be an issue with surveys using pulldata. All our surveys with a pulldata() calculation crashes after a few registrations. This is happening on iOS as well as the Windows version of the app.

Surveys without pulldata is working fine though.

Esri Frequent Contributor

Hi Patric,

There could be an issue with the pulldata() expression you are trying to use, or with the csv file it is querying. Can you please provide a copy of the xlsx form and the csv files in media folder so we can take a closer look.

Phil.

New Contributor

Hello!

Here is the form and csv-file from one of the Surveys not working with 3.3.. It can take some time before I crashes. Sometimes we can do 10 registrations before it stops responding.

It’s in Swedish and the csv-file is encoded in utf-8. I have tried with a version stripped of Swedish characters and encoded in ANSI. No change in behavior though.

There is no problem with 3.0.149 which is our current production-version. However we need to build our own version in AppStudio to prevent uncontrolled upgrades (AppStore) during work season. This caused us a lot of trouble last season when our forms all of a sudden started to behave different than expected. We can’t find a template for a version prior to 3.3 (except for “classic” 2.8)

Kind regards

Patric Wiström

New Contributor

Hi Philip!

Did you recieve the xls-form and csv-file? I can´t see them in the thread. Is it better if I email them to you?

/Patric

Esri Frequent Contributor

Hi Patric,

No, I do not see the files attached. I have sent you a direct message with my contact details, can you please email them to me.

Phil.