Take the 2-minute tour ×
Geographic Information Systems Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for cartographers, geographers and GIS professionals. It's 100% free, no registration required.

Anyone here able to enlighten me with your knowledge of Adobe Illustrator files? I have spent several hours trying to find a way to view an Adobe Illustrator .ai file from cloudmade.

Linky: http://downloads.cloudmade.com/asia/western_asia/turkey/turkey.ai.zip

Is there a way (preferably free) to at least view these .ai files in ArcGIS 10 or other GIS softwares?

ArcGIS has had "export to .ai" for at least 10 years which seems odd (insert disparaging esri comment here) there would be no way to use (or at least view) them in ArcGIS

share|improve this question
    
Are AI files spatially-enabled in any way? I equate them to PDF files and AFAIK those can't be imported to ArcGIS either (although they can be spatially-enabled). –  blah238 May 30 '12 at 16:33
    
You can convert illustrator files (v8 only) to shapefiles - have done for years.... –  Mapperz May 30 '12 at 16:39
add comment

1 Answer

up vote 2 down vote accepted

Convert Adobe Illustrator to Shapefiles:

Assumes you have a copy of Adobe Illustrator (or trial version) you must export as DWG file.

1) If necessary, sort the linework to layers based on the attributes you want the GIS data to have. The layer names will end up in a field "Layer" in the converted data, so be as descriptive as possible.

2) Curves in Illustrator must be converted to lines before export. Use Object>Path> "Add Anchor Points" command to add nodes to the curves (may need to invoke several times), and Object>Path> "Simplify" command to convert to lines.

3) Export to older version of DWG or DXF (R14 works).

4) View in ArcGIS, and export the data to a shapefile then use the Spatial Adjustment tool (does not work with a personal/file geodatabases)

5) Use the Spatial Adjustment toolbar in an edit session to match the linework to points on a known projection (the ArcGIS Help has quite a bit about this). You can match as many points as you wish, and you can choose the method ArcMap uses to align the data.

6) Export your data to a geodatabase feature class and set the projection.

share|improve this answer
    
thanks for the instructions Mapperz... i am currently downloading the free AI CS6 free trail (it's almost 2GB). Once it finishes i will attempt your ai2shp recipe. –  sirgeo May 30 '12 at 18:18
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.