There is a question on Main (Add/Remove Relate using ArcPy without ArcGIS Pro?) whose content may later be edited but it currently includes:

I am trying to add a relate between 2 feature classes so that I can use the area of the related table to update a field in the original table. I found an ArcGIS Pro article (http://pro.arcgis.com/en/pro-app/tool-reference/data-management/add-relate.htm) for doing this, but a similar feature does not seem to exist in ArcPy.

I think this is typical of a class of question which I expect to see frequently while ArcPy developers are transitioning from the ArcGIS 10.x architecture applications (ArcMap, ArcCatalog, ArcScene, ArcGlobe) to ArcGIS Pro.

As a result I asked, also on Main, Terminology for distinguishing ArcPy installed with ArcGIS 10.x for Desktop from that which comes with ArcGIS Pro? I asked it there rather than here because I thought that there may have been a terminology used in ArcGIS presentations/documentation somewhere like perhaps "ArcPy Pro" (Python 3, ArcGIS Pro) vs ArcPy (Python 2, ArcMap, etc). That was therefore not a question about the software that drives GIS SE and instead was about a GIS platform.

The reason that I did this is that a question as simple sounding as:

Does ArcPy have an AddRelate_management tool?

is no longer unambiguous.

Since the release of ArcGIS Pro with ArcGIS 10.3.x for Desktop there are two valid answers:

  • Yes, if you are using Python 3.x and able to call functions from ArcGIS Pro
  • No, if you are using Python 2.x and only able to call functions from the ArcGIS 10.x applications

This is just one of several questions on Main that I have seen so far that illustrate the need to qualify some ArcPy questions by also stating whether they are using it with ArcGIS Pro or one of the ArcGIS 10.x architecture applications and/or from Python 2.x or 3.x. Some other examples are:

Many of our ArcPy users are not going to be familiar with the differences in tools and modules available when using ArcPy in the two contexts, and since I am one of the people who will be looking at their questions, I can see myself asking frequently for them to be more precise about the context in which they are using ArcPy.

Should we recommend to our users that when ArcPy is key to their questions, it will help us if they can also let us know whether they are using it with ArcGIS Pro and Python 3, or not?

If this seems like a wise thing to do then that advice could be added to Tagging ArcGIS questions?

  • 2
    How about adding a note in the description of the arcgis-desktop tag that states the arcgis-pro tag should also be used in addition if ArcGIS Pro is in context? The same could be done for just arcpy, but I think changing arcgis-desktop would also help the same issue in other areas rather than just targeting Python. – Evil Genius Dec 8 '15 at 12:01
  • @EvilGenius I'm thinking that even though ArcGIS Pro has been positioned as another application of ArcGIS for Desktop, it uses a different architecture to ArcMap, ArcCatalog, ArcScene and ArcGlobe, and so most arcgis-pro tagged questions should not also have arcgis-desktop i.e. they will usually be mutually exclusive in all but marketing definitions. On the other hand I'm thinking that every arcpy tagged question may need to also be tagged arcgis-pro (implies python-3) or arcgis-desktop (implies python-2). – PolyGeo Dec 9 '15 at 11:40

Based on clarifications that came out of the Q&A at Main (Terminology for distinguishing ArcPy installed with ArcGIS 10.x for Desktop from that which comes with ArcGIS Pro?), I propose that:

  1. When a question uses ArcPy with ArcGIS Pro, it should be tagged and
  2. When a question uses ArcPy with the ArcGIS 10.x for Desktop architecture, it should be tagged and / / /
  3. For questions that are already tagged with from 1. and 2. above, the tags , and are unnecessary because their use can already be inferred. I think the case for this dot point is supported at Handling of "inherited" tags
  • I don't think #3 is a good idea (or at least does not need to be a policy, or part of this answer). If there is room for tags why not using the broader ones? They are also useful narrowing down the scope of search. Certainly some python users would want answering questions and progressing towards tag badges. – Andre Silva Dec 10 '15 at 23:20
  • @AndreSilva I think the python-* tags are unnecessary here (not unnecessary everywhere) because if you are using ArcPy then saying Python too is no new information. If you are using ArcPy with Pro and have those two tags then Python 3 adds no new information, and likewise with 10.x and Python 2. My aim is to use just enough tags to accurately classify the questions so that they can be funneled to those with that expertise and software. – PolyGeo Dec 11 '15 at 1:42
  • We could apply the same reasoning to 'arcmap' and 'arcgis-desktop', i.e., using the former already implies using the latter. Do you agree? I prefer using both, because they belong to different levels in the hierarchy of classification; like 'python', 'arcgis-desktop' is the broader one. 'arcpy' and 'arcmap' are useful to refine the search. – Andre Silva Dec 12 '15 at 0:41
  • @AndreSilva I apply pragmatic rather than purist reasoning to your question. The first two things that I as a potential answerer of many ArcGIS for Desktop questions want to know is whether that is the product being used, and also the version being used. Nowadays, I would estimate that more than 95% of ArcGIS for Desktop (exclude extensions) questions involve ArcMap, and even when ArcCatalog is mentioned it is often a function that is also present in the Catalog window of ArcMap. – PolyGeo Dec 12 '15 at 0:48
  • At the same time I also want to know whether it is a GUI (maybe 80%) or coding (ArcPy, maybe 15% or ArcObjects, maybe 5%) question. Consequently, I prefer to tag as arcgis-desktop or arcpy or arcobjects because I think that is very useful to funnel them to end users (like me), soft developers (like me) and hardcore developers (not me). arcpy and arcobjects both imply arcgis-desktop although the advent of ArcGIS Pro now affects the aforementioned trichotomy (the trigger for this question). – PolyGeo Dec 12 '15 at 0:51
  • With respect to ArcGIS for Desktop questions I think arcgis-desktop, arcgis-pro, arcpy and arcobjects have very high value while python and arcmap have quite limited value. – PolyGeo Dec 12 '15 at 0:55
  • 1
    Alright, perfect. But we also need to look to the 'python' guys, i.e., users who know python, like GIS, but which are not that into in platform A or platform B; but they can contribute. So, using the 'python' tag is also nice to embrace this community. I'll stop here because I think I cannot convince you in this matter, nor you can convince me the other way round (I remember we made the same arguments before, somewhere) :). My -1 is for bullet #3, then. I agree with the other suggestions. – Andre Silva Dec 12 '15 at 1:07
  • @AndreSilva Some great Python people are here, and I very much welcome them and have learned much from them, but if they want to answer pure Python questions and develop a reputation that takes them forward in a Python developer career then I think they should be looking more to Stack Overflow. What I think they can learn and impart here is where GIS libraries start, and pure Python stops which we have started to try and describe at meta.gis.stackexchange.com/questions/4058/… – PolyGeo Dec 12 '15 at 1:12
  • I also think there are some great ArcPy/Python developer careers to be had. In my case by having the ArcGIS vocabulary (what tools are available and how to use them) to pair with expanding knowledge of Python, in the case of others by having the Python vocabulary (what functions are available and how to use them) to pair with expanding knowledge of ArcGIS. I want Python people here but I still see the python tag as having little value when used on ArcGIS questions for which I recommend they search on arcpy instead. – PolyGeo Dec 12 '15 at 1:14
  • 1
    The python tag is valuable for people who track specific tags. I would much rather track just the python tag and get a single daily summary than track the python tag and arcpy tag and track two separate summaries because I will miss some arcpy specific questions if I track only the python tag and miss some non-arcpy questions on python if I track only arcpy tag. It is important to me to keep my tracked tags at a minimum while still finding all the content I want. (And right now, I am tracking both tags.) – blord-castillo Dec 16 '15 at 15:52
  • @blord-castillo I think this Meta SE Q&A counters that case fairly well: meta.stackexchange.com/q/93126/215590 Although searching on [*py*] is not possible, to me it seems reasonable that if you want to filter on both of two of the four most frequently used tags then you are free to do that using gis.stackexchange.com/questions/tagged/python+arcpy or [arcpy] [python] – PolyGeo Dec 16 '15 at 21:54
  • 1
    @PolyGeo Ah, poking around I think I solved the notification issue too, which was the one I was concerned with. You have to create a custom multi-rule filter on the main stackexchange site. (advanced tag subscriptions in preferences) Now I just wait to see if it sends one email or two with two rules.... – blord-castillo Dec 17 '15 at 14:39

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