ArcGIS 10 has a new experience for working with temporal data. Temporal data is data that represents a state in time, such as the land-use patterns of Hong Kong in 1990, or total rainfall in Honolulu on July 1, 2009. Temporal data is collected to analyze weather patterns and other environmental variables, monitor traffic conditions, study demographic trends, and so on.
In ArcGIS 10, you can visualize your temporal data using a simple workflow of authoring time properties on a layer and visualizing the data over time using a simple and easy-to-use time slider. Besides visualizing these temporal maps, you can also publish these maps to ArcGIS Server.
Once you have added your temporal dataset in one of the ArcGIS Desktop applications (ArcMap, ArcGlobe, or ArcScene), the time properties of the data must be set on the Time tab of the Layer Properties dialog box. Time properties can be enabled on the layer by checking Enable time on this layer on the Time tab of the Layer Properties dialog box. The time properties are set based on how the time information is stored in the data.
The Time Slider window provides controls that allow you to visualize your temporal data in the ArcGIS Desktop applications (ArcMap, ArcGlobe, and ArcScene). You can open the Time Slider window by clicking the Open Time Slider Window button on the Tools toolbar. The button is unavailable if you do not have a time-enabled dataset in your map, globe, or scene.
Layers authored with time information can be published to ArcGIS Server. These time-enabled map services can then be consumed by client applications, such as ArcMap, or in Web applications.