How can I see changes made in a feature?

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10-15-2014 08:26 AM
denisedavis
Occasional Contributor III

I've already tried the Data Comparison tools and I'm not getting the information I want from them. I'd like to see any changes made to the feature and get a shapefile or feature class that contains ONLY the differences in each file. Is there a tool that will show me the delta in a newer file compared to the older file?

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7 Replies
denisedavis
Occasional Contributor III

Does anyone out there have any ideas for me?

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DanPatterson_Retired
MVP Esteemed Contributor

Only for line files see the help topic on this.  The rest return tabular and similar results.  you might want to explore the symmetrical difference tool amongst some of the other standard overlay tools...some might meet your specific needs

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denisedavis
Occasional Contributor III

Thanks Dan! I haven't talked to you in quite a while. Hope all is well with you.

I am working with point and line files. The data is updated and each week I receive a new version of the data. What I'm interested in seeing is where the data has changed geographically, not new data, only modified data. I've tried both options you suggested and the output is messy. My results should be contained to about 50 modifications and the results I get with the tools you've suggested return 1000's - 10,000's attributes.

I think I should be able to put the new data into a tool and find any geographical change to a feature based on the old data. Is that possible with any of the tools available in ArcMap? I've got the Advanced license and almost every extension there is. I'd imagine that someone else has needed this type of function in the past and was really hoping that I could use an existing tool without trying to write a new script or build a new model.

Thanks again for any insight you can provide!

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DanPatterson_Retired
MVP Esteemed Contributor

Denise...fine, thanks ...
Those differences seem excessive.  You mention that you are getting the data regularly, so I presume that the people sending it to you are using standardarized input files with a common coordinate syste.  Are you editing feature classes within a geodatabase or standalone shapefiles or something else (ie data base sources...networked data etc?  If you are editing just point and line files, then the symmetrical difference won't be of any use, but the Detect Feature Change tool should be.  Are the attributes showing the change or the geometry or both?  Is it a networked environment?  Do you have multiple users working on the data?  So in short, your workflow description would help narrow it down.

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ModyBuchbinder
Esri Regular Contributor

Hi

If I understand the problem correctly you have a unique identifier for each feature and you need to find if it was changed.

For points you can add the coordinate as X,Y fields.

Then join the old and new data on the identifier and check where the X or Y changed.

For lines you can get the centroid, usually where and vertex was moved the centroid
will change too.

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denisedavis
Occasional Contributor III

Thanks for your response. I suppose that would work for a small set of data. The attribute tables I'm working with contain 100's of thousands of features so I'm looking for an automated way for the GIS to tell me what has been changed.

I appreciate you taking the time to respond.

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denisedavis
Occasional Contributor III

Thanks for the response. I get this data from a database and then put it into a database that's local so I don't alter the data other users are working with. I've tried the Detect Feature Change tool but I may not be using it correctly.

I will play around with it a little more to see what data is being returned.

I appreciate all your help!

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