A grouped table of contents for ESRI’s ArcIMS html client

February 15th, 2007 by Adam

Dave Bollinger’s dbGroupToC is a fantastic improvement to the default ArcIMS html client interface. “It is capable of grouping any number of layers into any number of groups which may be collapsed and expanded. It supports visibility toggling at both the layer and group levels. It supports a single “swatch” per layer to indicate legend rendering, as well as an optional “legend” per layer which can include detailed legend rendering if desired. It distinguishes between layers which are completely visible, and layers which have been flagged visible but are not visible at the current zoom level. It is relatively browser-independent, requires only minimal changes to existing code to implement, and is clearly broken into code and data modules.”

You can download it, and instructions for installation, here.


1. Copy the entire dbGroupToc directory to the website directory which ArcIMS uses (so dbGroupToC is a subdirectory).

2. Replace the default toc.htm file, located in the website’s directory with the toc.htm included in the dbGroupToC directory you
just copied.

3. Add the following bit of Javascript to “MapFrame.htm” in
the website’s directory before (or after) the other included JavaScript files

4. Clear your browser cache and reload the website to make sure the ToC has been updated.

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January 17th, 2007 by Adam
I’ve run into a couple problems converting MySQL data to UTF-8. With Moodle for example, version 1.7 defaults to specify UTF-8 in the HTML header, which makes all non-unicode text look funny. Moodle’s automated database conversion only works if you have certain versions of php. I didn’t, so here is how I switched a Moodle MySQL database to UTF-8.Dump the database to an .sql file, then convert the file to unicode (UTF-8). Unifier is very small and free to use for 30 file conversions. It did the conversion very easily.

Just uncheck all the conversion options except “Convert HTML entities to raw Unicode characters”, and run the conversion to save as a different file. Then batch re-import the data to a different database set up for UTF-8 using the .sql file.

Here is a good discussion on how to convert ISO encoded mysql databases to UTF.

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Share like RimuHosting

October 19th, 2006 by Adam

Talk about a knowledge building institutions, RimuHosting is a fantastic example of how businesses can maintain and build upon tacit knowledge within their organization. Even better, they put this stuff online for everyone to use. Invaluable.

For instance, quick and easy setup of virtual hosts using webadmin.

Or distilled series of steps for setting up a robust production zope/plone installation.

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Batch Geocoding

August 23rd, 2006 by Adam

Working with the RALLY Foundation’s assessment of Central City New Orleans, I’ve been mapping some of the primary data collected. The easiest way to geocode is to use the batch geocoder here:


The site uses Yahoo’s Geocoding API which is based on NAVTEQ and Tele Atlas street data, hence it can give more accurate results than a TIGER-based geocoder.

I simply export unique household identifiers and their addresses from SPSS to DBF-IV, open it in Excel, and copy and past it into the html batch geocoder interface. Once the geocoding is done, I copy from the interface and paste back into excel. Save it as excel, import into SPSS, and then merge back into the original db (make sure to sort HHID in ascending order for both databases).

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