July 8, 2002–3Dconnexion,a developer of 3D controllers has announced that it has developed the ArcView plug-in for users of ESRI’s GIS software. The new plug-in will enable ArcView users to take full advantage of 3Dconnexion’s SpaceMouse and SpaceBall’s unparalleled real-time 3D visualization and navigation features. Additionally, a demonstration of both of the 3D controllers and the ESRI software in action will be available at the ESRI International User Conference to be held July 8-12, 2002 in San Diego, Calif.
Users of the ArcView mapping software, in conjunction with the 3Dconnexion devices, will now be empowered to intuitively “fly” around 3D geographical maps with real-life motion, in every possible direction. Simply applying light pressure to the device will seamlessly translate the user’s sense of touch into dynamic 3D movements within ArcView.
The combination of these two technologies now brings a powerful solution to those who utilize ESRI’s GIS software applications. Three-dimensional maps present tremendous demands on user interfaces. Maps are typically very large, and users need to pan and zoom frequently. Moreover, they need to change orientation and perspective to visualize exactly what they want to see. To accomplish this with a mouse takes numerous repetitive steps, and also requires that the user constantly shift from navigation to selection, working in fits and starts.
In contrast, by using a more powerful, intuitive two-handed approach, the ArcView user can navigate with the 3D controller in one hand, while their other hand is free to select, inspect or interrogate map data with the mouse. As a result, the user gains a better understanding and comprehension of their maps, accomplishing their work more directly, and with less fatigue.
In addition to providing an unparalleled free flowing navigation, the SpaceMouse and SpaceBall also provide mappable buttons which the ArcView users can use for common functions or macros, further enriching their experience. The SpaceMouse and SpaceBall plug-in for ArcView will be available at the end of Q3,2002.