Non-GIS Developers

10-07-2015 07:05 AM
Occasional Contributor III

Greetz All,

I am wondering if anyone in this group started our doing web maps without any GIS background?

  • What kinds of pitfalls did you find?
  • What kind of issues did you face?
  • Would you have gone that direction had you known the obstacles ahead of time?

I've been developing GIS applications for several years in multiple environments and I've heard it said (recently) that we should let our Web Development personnel handle the WAB and started doing these applications. All I can think is, what happens when they need to adjust annotations, layer configurations, featureclasses that aren't in the right projections, etc. All of those things that I understand and can bypass days of research because I work in the industry make these things less of an obstacle and more of a speed bump.

Just trying to get the opinions of others doing this?

Am I dead wrong? Has ESRI created the perfect tool for non-developers to craft GIS-ready maps? Or is that pie-in-the-sky thinking?

What's your $0.02 worth on this?

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3 Replies
Occasional Contributor III

I have a very strong GIS/esri background, but next to no experience with programming and coding. Using the WAB out of the box is definitely suited best for someone in a GIS capacity rather a non-GIS web developer. When requests come in for custom functionality, though, it's sort of a sticky situation when you're not a developer.

In previous organizations, "GIS developers" have been brought on staff who actually had no GIS experience. It's a shame when an entry level "technician" has sit to down and teach the GIS developer what a clip function is, not to mention a waste of company dollars.

New Contributor II

We are actually very solid with GIS, and decent at coding, but have hit so many brick walls with our app on Web App Builder that we are now forced to try the API for developer platform, though I attended sessions at the ESRI conference in July and found it wildly beyond my ability to program.

We have no other choice because: Web App Builder features have zero css boxes. Why not?

I have code I could use to make the features of our app exactly how I want and have no place to put them.

Switching to the Developer application may not be a great idea, but as it currently stands I cannot group, toggle, or categorize the layer list (left panel), and cannot even change the links at the top of the screen back to a nicer looking code (these links switched back to simple text when the July update came).

Please contact me, I am so happy to explain and have explained these issues to tech support and product developers at Scene online (that product offers so much more for the layer list but we don't need 3D).


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Occasional Contributor III

Another downside to using the Dev edition is the inability to load it back to your Portal site, using the named user accounts that were paid for

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