New automating map workflows in ArcGIS 10
New automating map workflows in ArcGIS 10

Map automation with Python and arcpy.mapping

Geoprocessing has been extended to take into account maps, layouts, and layers through Python scripting. By combining this new scripting functionality with the new Data Driven Pages support, you can use ArcGIS 10 to automate many of your common map and output related workflows. For example, you can create a complete PDF map book by combining a title page, multiple map pages, tabular reports, contact lists, or other information. Because you can access the layout elements and properties via a script, you can author a map in ArcMap, write your own production applications for making changes to the text and placement of page elements, then automate the output (exporting or printing). And because it is part of the geoprocessing framework, you can even deploy your script as an ArcGIS Server geoprocessing service, allowing any user in your organization or over the Web to produce maps or map books.

Through Python, you also can interact with map documents in batch, which allows you to perform a wide variety of map and layer management tasks. Some examples include updating symbology and layer properties on a group of maps, creating a list of maps that have layers referencing a certain data source, updating and repairing layer data sources, and saving map documents to prior versions. All these operations can be performed in batch for a large number of files, automating tedious tasks and allowing you to focus on your important creative and analytic work.

Learn more about automating map workflows
Example of a multipage map book
Source: http://help.arcgis.com