Configuring time settings
Spatial phenomena collected with time information may allow map users to see what happened at a specific time, or what may happen in the future; by animating time-based data you can visualize it at each step and see patterns or trends emerging over time. Examples of phenomena whose data is well-suited for this purpose include hurricanes, tornadoes, and other meteorological events; population migrations; land use and environment change; or wildfire or flood event progression.
Some services are time enabled, containing spatial datasets that contain different information for the same location at different times. If a map contains time-enabled layers, the display can be configured to show the data during a specific period of time, or to animate the data over time.
Enabling time on ArcGIS Online hosted feature services
As a publisher in an organization, you can publish time-enabled feature services to ArcGIS Online. This allows you and your organization (if you share your service) to use your temporal hosted service to create time-enabled web maps. To enable time on a hosted feature service you own or administer, follow these steps:
- Publish a hosted feature service on ArcGIS Online. For more information, see Hosted feature services.
- Log in to the ArcGIS.com website and click My Content.
- Click the name of your feature service to view its item details.
- In the Layers section of the page, click the small arrow icon next to the layer where you want to enable time and click Time Settings.
- Check the box next to Enable time
- Choose to record the time data as specific events in time or time ranges with a start and end time.
- Choose the time field or fields in your data.
Verifying that a layer contains time data
ArcGIS for Server map services and feature services hosted on ArcGIS Online can be time enabled. You can find out if layer in the map is time enabled by referring to the REST endpoint of the service.
- Open the map in the ArcGIS.com map viewer.
- Click the Details button.
- Click the Contents button.
- Click the arrow to the right of the layer name and click Item Details.
- Scroll down to the Map Contents (if a map service layer) or Layers (if a feature service layer) and click the hyperlinked text to open the service description. If a layer is time enabled, you will find a section called Time Info on the web page that opens.
Configuring time settings
When you create a time-enabled map, you can configure the playback speed, time span, time window, and slider labels.
- Open the time-enabled map in the ArcGIS.com map viewer.
- Click the Time Settings button to the right of the slider. The Time Settings window opens.
- Click Show Advanced Options. From here you can make the configurations below.
The default speed is two seconds per time interval. You can adjust this by moving the slider toward Slower or Faster. People viewing your map can change the default speed you set.
The Time Span section shows the timeline of each time-enabled layer in your map. You can see how the timeline of a layer compares to the other layers, and you can change the start and end times of the map. By default, the time span of the map is set to the union of timelines of all your time-enabled layers.
Time Span handles configuring the display of historical data only, where the time layers have timelines that have completed already. It doesn't handle time data that is still being accumulated. The start and end times for the time span are explicitly set.
You can change the time span in three ways:
- Drag the handles on the slider within the Layer Time Lines section to manually set the start and end times of the map.
- Select explicit values within the Start Time and End Time fields.
- Click a layer's timeline to set the start or end time of the map to the start or end time of the layer.
Use the Time Display section to specify the amount of data to display as time passes. Enter a time interval and choose to show only the current time interval or all the data progressively over time.
- Enter a numerical value for the time interval.
- Choose the units for the time interval from the drop-down list. The units that appear in the drop-down list depend on the timelines of the layers. To change these units, you need to edit the layer properties of your data.
- Choose how to display the data:
- Choose only display the data in the current time interval to show only the data that falls within the time window. For example, if you have data representing hurricane paths over a 10-year period and you want to show the paths of all hurricanes that occurred within a given year, you would choose this option (and type 1 Year as your interval). As the map animates, you see the hurricane paths for the first year, the second, the third, and so on. Each year of data displays independently of the other years.
- Choose progressively display all the data to show all the data over time. For example, if you have data representing hurricane paths over a 10-year period and you want to display all the hurricane paths that occurred over the 10-year period in successive years over the previous years, you would choose this option (and type 1 Year as your interval). As the map animates, you see the yearly hurricane paths cumulatively over 10 years.
Saving changes to the map
To preserve the configuration changes, you need to save them to the map. See Saving web maps for more information.
- Click OK to apply your configuration changes and close the Time Settings window.
- Verify that you are logged in.
- Click the Save button. If you own the map, click Save to update the map or Save As to save a new version of the original map.
- If you do not own the map, click Save As to save a new version of the original map. You cannot update a map you do not own.