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3 Data Compilation and Editing

Creating and editing annotation

ArcGIS provides several options for displaying text on a map to describe particular features or add general information
to the map. One simple option is to use map labels which are created from feature attribute values and are placed
automatically (see Labeling features in Chapter 4). Another option is to create annotation. With annotation, the
position, text string, and display properties of text can all be edited. Using annotation allows you to select and position
individual pieces of text. This provides exibility in the appearance and placement of your map text. Annotation can be
stored with a specic map (map document annotation) or stored in a geodatabase, enabling the same map text to be

placed on different maps (geodatabase annotation).

Editing map document annotation

Map document annotation can be quickly created by converting labels on your map (see Labeling features in
Chapter 4). It is stored in the map in which it was created. You edit map annotation using the tools on the Draw toolbar,
as you would other graphics (you can use these same tools to create map document annotation). To edit an individual
annotation, select it using the Select Elements tool. You can then drag it to a new position or rotate it using the Rotate
tool. Press the Delete key to delete the annotation, or right-click and click Delete.

Select Elements


Select map annotation using

the Select Elements tool.

Drag selected map annotation to

reposition it. Use the Rotate tool
to rotate it around its center point.


Using ArcGIS Desktop

To change the font, size, or color of the annotation, use the tools on the Draw toolbar.

Text font

Text size

Text color

Right-clicking displays additional options.

Right-click a selected annotation to display editing options.

Creating and editing geodatabase annotation

Geodatabase annotation is stored as a feature class in a geodatabase. Because of this, it can be added to different maps

and accessed by anyone in your organization who has access to the geodatabase. Geodatabase annotation also has a
wider range of editing options than does map annotation.
There are two types of geodatabase annotationstandard and feature linked. Standard annotation is independent of
features in the geodatabase. For example, you might have a piece of standard annotation that labels a mountain range
or a neighborhood in a citythe annotation simply marks the general area on the map. Feature-linked annotation is
associated with the feature it is describing. The text reects the value of a eld or elds from the feature to which its


linkedif an attribute value is updated, the linked annotation is also updated. You might use feature-linked annotation
to identify particular features like streets, buildings, or rivers. If you move, copy, or delete a feature, the annotation is
moved, copied, or deleted with it. In addition, with feature-linked annotation, as you create new features annotation will
be created automatically.