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Hey guys I have been messing around with programing for a while now and have gotten proficient with Python and have some interest in HTML 5 and Javascript. I have recently received a request for an IRD (essentially a proposal to do research and development) from my employer for developing a trial web mapping application to be used as a tool for marketing web mapping services to clients and have functional use within the company. The API I have targeted is the ArcGIS Javascript API which relies heavily on the Dojo toolkit and have a targeted budget of $20,000 which includes time and materials. Since I am very interested in this subject area I have no problem spending most of the budget on training and developing in my free time; although I will really be the only person working on this.

My questions for you guys are: What exactly will I have to know to be able to produce something that is functional and presentable? Also, if you can recomend any instructor led programs out there that I can put in my budget?

I know there are a lot of free courses offered out there but since I'm kinda putting my ass on the line and have to have something to show at the end of this I would rather go with some training that is instructor led.

EDIT: Basically my idea is to create a pretty standard web map with some of our larger clients data displayed in layers that can be turned on and off. One of the key concepts is the ability to print the current view to a standardized template. The demand for this functionality comes from our project managers who often times will need a hard copy map as an exhibit in a meeting but wait until the last minute to tell us in the GIS dept. With just 3 full time analysts this can be a major issue.

EDIT2: I also plan to use this project as a jumping off point to get into much more advanced development, so the more I can learn the better.

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Tell us more about the project requirements. –  MLowry Apr 30 '13 at 18:52
    
Basically my idea is to create a pretty standard web map with some of our larger clients data displayed in layers that can be turned on and off. One of the key concepts is the ability to print the current view to a standardized template. The demand for this functionality comes from our project managers who often times will need a hard copy map as an exibit in a meeting but wait untill the last minute to tell us in the GIS dept. With just 3 full time analysts this can be a major issue. –  Patches Apr 30 '13 at 20:17
    
However, I also plan to use this project as a jumping off point to get into much more advanced development, so the more I can learn the better. –  Patches Apr 30 '13 at 20:19
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2 Answers 2

I guess I'm not answering your question in many ways, but some food for thought: Do you really need the ESRI APIs? There are a lot of open source mapping libraries for Python (and for html/javascript there is OpenLayers and Leaflet to name the most popular ones). The book "Python Geospatial Development" is a bit dated (a year or so..?) but I still found it an excellent book covering core concepts and open source libraries and frameworks. Well worth a shot if you have the time and want to consider going down another road.

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The second edition of the book "Python Geospatial Development" is out FIY since less than a month packtpub.com/python-geospatial-development-second-edition/book –  ThomasG77 Jun 6 '13 at 20:45
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I took the Building Web Applications Using the ArcGIS API for JavaScript Insructor Led ESRI Course last November.

Overall it was an OK class. I learned some, and you are given a lot of code snippets and samples in the course data they provide, but overall, we really just went through the coursebook and copy pasted blocks of code to make the application work. There wasn't a whole lot of time spent on the WHY it works, which is how I learn best.

I'm sure its changed by now, hopefully, but there were also a lot of errors or bugs in the course, that made it frustrating. Overall, I don't know that its worth $1,500 especially when you could just play in the Sandbox on the ESRI JavaScript API page and figure things out from there using all the samples they provide.

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