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GIS for Developers

DZone 's Guide to

GIS for Developers

Mapping solutions for web, desktop, and mobile devices.

· Web Dev Zone ·
Free Resource

I had the opportunity to meet with Nicholas Furness, Product Manager of the Developer Program at Esri during their annual user conference in San Diego. 

Esri has a full suite of developer tools and resources to build mapping and analytics solutions to solve business problems. Developers are able to build, manage, and deploy location-based web and native applications for desktop and mobile devices.

Developers are able to create rich, interactive data visualizations in 2D or 3D in the same API with GPU-accelerated rendering and rich pop-ups. They can store data in the cloud or behind a firewall, manage spatial and nonspatial data, and add more data to maps. They can build native applications for use when the device is offline and have access to display maps, edit and sync data, geocode, and get routes and directions.

Resources for developers include numerous tutorials. Most are 10 to 15 minutes in length. Their hundreds of success stories come from more than 20 sectors including government, natural resources,  telecommunication, public safety, and transportation. There's also a developer blog, community, and documentation that is continuously monitored to ensure queries are answered in a timely manner.

Nicholas and his team are focused on the Runtime SDKs for native, iOS, Android, and cross-platform app development. They ensure functionality is the same across the board. They build individual SDKs native for the platform including documentation, samples, and tutorials around the API.

According to Nicholas, just providing an API is not enough; they put details into SDK for consistent documentation. When new functionality is added, it includes the documentation that goes with it. Reference documentation is published using the appropriate documentation (Android, iOS, .Net), While the content is the same, the presentation is different.

ArcGIS is a very broad platform and the API has sample applications with targeted functionality. More than 200 samples are in the open-source application available on the app store.

It's completely free. Esri awards service credits every month, so developers have a chance to play with all the services. Hobbyist developers and not-for-profits can release applications using their developer account as long as they don’t make money off it. When they start making money, Esri will work to identify the appropriate plan for use going forward.

Topics:
api management ,sdk for ar app development ,developer community

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