There are a few themes that have come through with the evolution of Desktop analysis in ArcGIS. Firstly, the goal is to make analysis easy; with the emphasis being on building workflows rather than working on individual components. Secondly, the software has grown to really exploit more sophisticated hardware capabilities as well as parallel processing to make analysis faster. There are also numerous improvements to make performance and drawing more efficient. Finally, it’s all about having more accurate analysis, for example, using geodesic measurements rather than straight line for global scale data.
Specific to Pro, there are some specific analytical tools that can be used in both 2D and 3D which is demonstrated in our analytical workflow. With a 20% performance bump over ArcMap, Pro caters towards scalability, allowing you to work with bigger datasets and visualise the information with modern symbology.
The first thing you’ll notice about ArcGIS Pro is that there is a core tab called Analysis that really is the gateway to all things analysis inside the new application. Within this tab, you get access to a gallery of powerful analytical tools – a suite of all the tools that you’re familiar with in ArcMap. Similarly, you still have access to Python command line, modelbuilder, access extensions like Network analyst tools, and there’s an imagery processing pane as well that you can launch.
Most of the tools, models and scripts that you’ve already created are going to continue to work in Pro, so you do not have to recreate things from scratch. There is also a special tool called Analyze Tools for Pro that checks models and scripts for any unsupported tools or data types.
There will be tools continually migrated with every new release, and there are also some interesting new spatial statistics tools that exploit the 3D capabilities of Pro; the Space Time Cube and the Emerging Hotspot Analysis.
During the tech session, I played with some house price and insurance spend data I obtained from MapData Services to understand how to target my marketing efforts for home and contents or property insurance, as well as correctly identify areas of high potential sales, demonstrating a few tools along the way.
It’s easy to run and produce results, and this is quite evident with simple tools like buffering. With intuitive parameters that change depending on the type of data you’re working with, the tool pane and geoprocessing history are easily accessible for multiple iterations of the analysis. Tool help is also available at the click of an information button if required.
For this particular analytical workflow I used the Grouping Analysis tool to identify suburbs that have similar characteristics. This tool is quite good at identifying similar areas based on multiple variables. For example, it will find groups of statistical areas that exhibit similar behaviours based on certain values. It may be that an identified group may have a mid-range median house price, but pay a lot in insurance. Or you may have suburbs that have very high median house prices but do not pay much in insurance. I don’t necessarily want to identify statistically significant clusters, but this will give me a good idea what regions are similar enough that I can modify marketing techniques. The output PDF report produces a really nice summary of similarities between the resulting groups that are identified.
As mentioned before, there are some new statistical tools that work really well with the Pro 2D/3D capabilities, which are the Create Space/Time Cube and the Emerging Hot Spot Analysis Tool. These tools have core capabilities which summarise spatial distribution, identify significant clusters and explore patterns over time through regression.
Using some policy purchase history, I can look at hotspots over space and time using the emerging hotspot analysis tool. A good example for this is how sales always tend to intensify prior to the end of financial year due to increased sales and tax benefits.
This output can be transformed into a 3-dimensional space time cube which really creates a different visualisation using both geography and blocks of time.
ArcGIS Pro streamlines the analytical workflow so that it is more intuitive and faster. The new tools really utilise the cross 2D/3D capabilities to give you some nice results. If you are interested in learning more about analysis in Pro, please visit this website. It provides ideas and instructions on how to do some interesting workflows!