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The TimeSlider functionality in the ArcGIS Server JS API is great for working with time-based vector features - you can scroll forwards and backwards through time to see the vector features which existed at a given time instant.

Has anyone created a similar time-slider for rasters?

I have a series of monthly weather grids which I'd like to display, allowing the user to scroll to any month (eg, show me the average rainfall for June).

The time-slider relies on the featureclass being defined in ArcMap with a Time attribute, but this isn't available for raster layers.

The best workaround I can think of is:

  • create a separate map document for each raster
  • build a separate tiled map service from each map document
  • add a DOJO slider to the map, with increments to mark each raster
  • use JavaScript to switch the appropriate raster on at each mark on the DOJO slider

Is anyone aware of a better/faster approach? This will be quite a laborious process as it will mean creating and maintaining multiple MXDs and MSDs.

Thanks

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

The new mosaic datasets are time-aware and can be published as image services (requires Image extension)

Esri has a javascript sample , and if you look at the image service details you can see that there is a time extent along with the normal spatial extent, and even the Query operation supports time.

This is definitely a neater solution (provided you have access to the Image Extension), but under moderate load or large extents, I would speculate that switching between tiled services could be faster.

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Genius, thanks for that. I haven't worked with Image services yet so I didn't realise they were time-aware. This should make things a lot easier –  Stephen Lead Sep 16 '11 at 5:52
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