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605 post(s)
#06-Jan-20 05:26

I have merged orthophotos into one image then created a map of the orthophotos overlaid with the boundary of area of interest. I want to export the map to an ECW image file that I can provide to the client to view in their organization. I have searched the menu options trying to export either the map or alternatively the map in a layout to an ECW file.

I can export the image alone to an ECW file that is 268 MB in size. I found a viewer that can handle viewing large image files. The ECW file retains the resolution of the original LiDAR orthophotos. However what the merged image lacks is the boundary of the area of interest so the client won't know what is inside and what is outside their area of jurisdiction.

I thought of providing my client with the M9 free viewer but I want to keep it simple and something that has close to zero learning curve, they will likely share the image with their stakeholders.

Question, with M9 am I able to export a map or layout to an ECW file? I tried exporting a layout to PDF but the image resolution degrades too much. Or is there a way to transform a map or layout back to an image for export to ECW?


9,409 post(s)
#06-Jan-20 05:56

What a good question. I think what you want (me too) is the ubiquity and simplicity of Manifold 8's F6 (Tools > Make Image). That was easy to take for granted.

605 post(s)
#06-Jan-20 17:46

Thanks for the suggestion. I recreated the map I had in M9 in M8 to use the Tools > Make Image feature. However now I remember why I didn't use Tools > Make Image much in M8 because the resulting images are very large in size. As an ECW in M9, the ECW of the orthophotos was about 268 MB. In M8, as a map containing the merged orthophoto plus one vector layer of the area boundary, the resulting image file was 1.2 GB.

What I ended up providing the client were two files, one high resolution ECW with just the merged orthophotos (268 MB) and a lower resolution PDF file from a layout of the merged orthophotos with the area boundary layer. They can use the PDF for reference then flip to higher resolution ECW to examine in detelai any features near the boundary of their jurisdictional area.


6,206 post(s)
#07-Jan-20 06:26

As an ECW in M9, the ECW of the orthophotos was about 268 MB. In M8, as a map containing the merged orthophoto plus one vector layer of the area boundary, the resulting image file was 1.2 GB.

Ah, but exporting that image to ECW format, which is a compressed format, would greatly reduce its size.

I agree with Tim that I miss the ubiquity and simplicity of Make Image. I expect we'll have that soon in 9. But I respectfully disagree it's the best approach here.

As I understand it, the objective is to provide high resolution photo data with a vector overlay to a client, but to do that using small files and a simple viewer. ECW is a compromise for that because to get small files in ECW you throw away data. It doesn't seem you are throwing away data because ECW is clever about visually compressing data into what is left, so what you see seems to be pretty good. But you are definitely throwing away data. I don't know what viewer you are using with ECW, either, but if it is simple enough for the client, OK.

PDF is universally acknowledged as acceptably easy for non-technical clients. One approach is to use a different PDF printer to output your layout in 9 as a PDF to get a more compact PDF. PDF printer software varies very widely in capabilities, quality, and size of output. See the File - Print topic for some commentary on that.

FWIW, reconsider using Viewer. If the user installs a regular installation, all he has to do is double-click a .map file and the thing opens. He then double-clicks the image and it opens. Navigating in images is exceptionally easy in Manifold - way easier than things like Photoshop. You can name it "Double click on me" to make it very easy. You can then give your user a full resolution image with no ECW degradation, overlaid with super detailed vectors, and it will all run very, very fast.

With just the slightest bit of coaching your users will be able to get way more out of projects than just looking at a static ECW. Something to consider.

605 post(s)
#07-Jan-20 18:09

FWIW, reconsider using Viewer.

Yes, I'll try getting the key contact for the client to try using M9 Viewer. I do all my work from a distance, I use desktop sharing for interactive sessions. It should be easy enough in a session to show them how to pan and zoom in Viewer and how to turn layers on and off in a map. It'll be a stepwise progression. I have separate ECW and PDF files prepared already, each file shows one aspect of their area of interest. Then the selling point to try M9 Viewer will be the client being able to have all those layers in one place and be able to turn layers on or off and to zoom in and out.

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