GeoTalks Express – Session 12 Questions & Answers

The twelfth of Blue Marble’s GeoTalks Express online webinar series entitled Global Mapper Tips and Tricks – Part II, was conducted on August 19th, 2020. During the live session, numerous questions were submitted to the presenters. The following is a list of these questions and the answers provided by Blue Marble’s technical support team.


How do you get the different binning method options (like variance) in the grid creation options?

The additional binning method options, Binning (Variance) and Binning (Median Value), in the Elevation Grid Creation tool will be available in the Global Mapper  Lidar Module version 22.0, which is being released later this year. 


I notice your current windows “order of presentation” seems reversed from my own experience. I experience the first loaded being placed “under” the next loaded data.

You can reverse the order of presentation for the layers in the Control Center with a right-click option. Right-click on Current Workspace the Control Center and select the option to Display Layer List In Reverse Order (Last is Drawn First).


When you feather elevation data can you then export the new feathered DEM?

Yes, Global Mapper will export the data that is displayed including any feathering settings for image or elevation layers. To capture these display settings involving multiple layers be sure to export all elevation layers involved. 


Is it possible to make a vector data transparent in Global Mapper?

You can completely hide a vector layer of features by unchecking the layer in the control center. There are some Null or No Symbol vector feature styles you can set to use for a layer or specific features. This will keep the features in the workspace and technically displayed, but they will not have a visible symbol used to display them. 


Can I export .shp data to .kml file complete with text display and full attribute data?

Yes, you can export vector features with attributes to KML/KMZ format. When exporting to this format be sure to choose the second Feature Descriptions option for Feature Description, Links, and Attribute Values. This KML/KMZ export option will be sure to export the attributes associated with each feature. 


Does Global Mapper have a function to create TIN? 

You can generate a gridded TIN and a vector TIN layer with the Elevation Grid Creation tool using 3D vector source data. When setting up the Grid Creation Options choose the Grid Method as Triangulation (Grid TIN of Points) to generate the gridded TIN layer. If you would like to also save the vector TIN, check the option to Save Triangulation Network (TIN) as a Vector Layer


Can these webinars be downloaded and saved to a pc or are they only available for review on YouTube?

Currently, the recorded webinar sessions are available on Blue Marble’s YouTube Channel. As a registered attendee, you will receive an email granting access to all of the GeoTalks Express session recordings. 


What happens when the attributes are null or blank?

With the Info Tips, if a feature has no label the Info Tip will display the text <NO LABEL> in place of the feature label. 

If you have configured the Info Tips to display a custom string of attributes and a feature does not contain a value for one of the attributes, the Info Tip will not display a value, it will just show a blank space for that attribute value. 


Can you set up a hotkey to toggle info tips on and off?

Unfortunately at this time there is no shortcut to toggle the Info Tips on and off, and there is no option to create a custom shortcut for this function. 

What you can do is add a custom toolbar button and place it on an existing toolbar to more easily turn the Info Tips on and off without having to navigate the view menu. 


Can we see info tips for 3D Points in 3D Viewer?

The Info Tips popup does not appear in the 3D viewer, it is only displayed when working in the 2D view. You can select individual points or features with the digitizer in the 3D view to display label and feature type information for the feature, but it will not be the information set up for the Info Tips. 


Can we merge DEM at various pixel sizes?

To merge multiple elevation layers, export them to a new file. When exporting elevation layers you will have the option to set the sample spacing or pixel size for the exported file. By default, this will be set to an average of the loaded layers, but you can alter these values to your desired pixel size for the merged file. 


Can you burn a DEM, like you want to change the depth of the river?

If you have a 3D area feature representing the river area, you can create a section of elevation grid for the river area only. After creating this smaller elevation grid, display the layers together and export them or use Combine/Compare Terrain Layers to combine them into a new gridded elevation layer. 

Alternatively, you could generate points from your existing elevation grid using the Layer Menu option to Create Point Features at Elevation Grid Cell Centers, and then create a new elevation grid layer using the generated points and your 3D river feature. 


Will there be a webinar on the LIDAR module?

We have some existing videos and recorded webinars on the Lidar Module available here on our YouTube Channel including this GeoTalks Express session on why you may need the Lidar Module. I also recommend this playlist on Lidar Processing in Global Mapper with the Lidar Module


Will the “Info Tips” work for “View in Google Earth”?

The Zoom to View in Google Earth option opens Google Earth on your machine. Info Tips are a function of Global Mapper and therefore will not work in Google Earth. 


After you split the layers, can you reverse them back into one?

There is no undo function for splitting a layer into multiple layers. In Global Mapper you do have the ability to select and copy (ctrl + c) and paste (ctrl + v) features between layers or to a new layer. You can select all the features in the split layers to then copy and paste them into a single layer again. 

Another option would be to export multiple layers to a single file in order to create a new un-split version of the layer. Load the exported layer into Global Mapper to see all the features appear in a layer together again. 


Can you bring in the Google Earth image to Global Mapper?

If you are able to save an image from Google Earth in a supported format, you will be able to load that image into Global Mapper. For the image to automatically display in the correct location in Global Mapper it will need to be saved as a fully georeferenced from Google Earth.  You can also render high-resolution imagery similar to Google Earth using the Online Data function.


Do the Info Tips work on 2 dem files?

The Info Tips can be set to work on multiple elevation files. In the Configure Info Tips dialog check the option to Include Values from All Layers Under Cursor to display the Info Tip information for multiple overlapping layers at the cursor location. 


Can you produce volume info between 2 of these contours like a stage storage?

If you have the source elevation layer you would need to limit the elevation grid layer to only display elevations between the contours of interest and then calculate the pile volume for the area. 

To restrict the elevation grid layer elevations open the Layer Options and on the Alter Elevations Tab, set the Minimum and Maximum Valid Elevations to the contour intervals you are interested in. Be sure to check the box to Clamp Out of Bound Values to Valid Range so there are no holes in the altered elevation grid. 

Next, use the digitizer to select the contour that bounds the area you would like to measure (the lower elevation for a pile, the higher elevation for a depression), right-click, and select Analysis/Measurement > Pile Volume

If you do not have the source elevation grid and only have the contour lines, create an elevation grid from the desired contours, and then calculate a pile volume using the contour lines and generated elevation grid. 


What size would a PDF be like that one?

When exporting data to PDF or 3D PDF format you do have options to specify the page size and orientation for the generated PDF file. The file size of the generated PDF depends on the resolution and size of the data you are exporting to this format.  For the example used in the presentation, the file size was a little over 5MB.


Can we apply display transparency to Google Earth displays?

Altering the display of the Google Earth imagery would be done in Google Earth, not Global Mapper. 

You can export raster imagery with transparency applied from Global Mapper to KML/KMZ format and load that file into Google Earth. In the KML/KMZ Export Options be sure to select the Export Image Format as PNG to support the image transparency in Google Earth. 


​How do I import custom shaders I set up in previous version​s?

From the Shader Options in the Configuration dialog box, you can choose to Edit a custom shader. There you should be able to Save to Surfer CLR File. You can then share this file to another machine or user and they should be able to create a custom shader and choose to Initialize from Surfer CLR File

If you are working in the current version 21.1 of Global Mapper, you can use the Import/Export User Settings option to share shaders and other Global Mapper settings from one machine to another. 

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