Dictionary renderer graphics overlay

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Sample viewer app

Create graphics using a local mil2525d style file and an XML file with key/value pairs for each graphic.

Image of dictionary renderer graphics overlay

Use case

Use a dictionary renderer on a graphics overlay to display more transient data, such as military messages coming through a local tactical network.

How to use the sample

Run the sample and view the military symbols on the map.

How it works

  1. Create a new DictionarySymbolStyle with DictionarySymbolStyle.createFromFile().
  2. Create a new DictionaryRenderer, passing in the symbolDictionary.
  3. Create a new GraphicsOverlay.
  4. Set the dictionary renderer to the graphics overlay.
  5. Parse through the local XML file creating a map of key/value pairs for each block of attributes.
  6. Create a Graphic for each attribute.
  7. Use the _wkid key to get the geometry's spatial reference.
  8. Use the _control_points key to get the geometry's shape.
  9. Add the graphic to the graphics overlay.

Relevant API

  • DictionaryRenderer
  • DictionarySymbolStyle
  • GraphicsOverlay

Offline Data

  1. Download the data from ArcGIS Online.
  2. Open your command prompt and navigate to the folder where you extracted the contents of the data from step 1.
  3. Push the data into the scoped storage of the sample app: adb push mil2525d.stylx /Android/data/com.esri.arcgisruntime.sample.dictionaryrenderergraphicsoverlay/files/mil2525d.stylx


defense, military, situational awareness, tactical, visualization

Sample Code

/* Copyright 2018 Esri
 * Licensed under the Apache License, Version 2.0 (the "License");
 * you may not use this file except in compliance with the License.
 * You may obtain a copy of the License at
 *    http://www.apache.org/licenses/LICENSE-2.0
 * Unless required by applicable law or agreed to in writing, software
 * distributed under the License is distributed on an "AS IS" BASIS,
 * See the License for the specific language governing permissions and
 * limitations under the License.

package com.esri.arcgisruntime.sample.dictionaryrenderergraphicsoverlay;

import java.io.IOException;
import java.io.InputStream;
import java.util.ArrayList;
import java.util.HashMap;
import java.util.List;
import java.util.Map;

import org.xmlpull.v1.XmlPullParser;
import org.xmlpull.v1.XmlPullParserException;
import org.xmlpull.v1.XmlPullParserFactory;

import android.os.Bundle;
import android.util.Log;

import androidx.appcompat.app.AppCompatActivity;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.ArcGISRuntimeEnvironment;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.geometry.Multipoint;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.geometry.Point;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.geometry.PointCollection;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.geometry.SpatialReference;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.mapping.ArcGISMap;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.mapping.BasemapStyle;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.mapping.view.Graphic;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.mapping.view.GraphicsOverlay;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.mapping.view.MapView;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.symbology.DictionaryRenderer;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.symbology.DictionarySymbolStyle;

public class MainActivity extends AppCompatActivity {

  private static final String TAG = MainActivity.class.getSimpleName();

  private MapView mMapView;

  protected void onCreate(Bundle savedInstanceState) {

    // authentication with an API key or named user is required to access basemaps and other
    // location services

    // get the reference to the map view
    mMapView = findViewById(R.id.mapView);
    ArcGISMap map = new ArcGISMap(BasemapStyle.ARCGIS_TOPOGRAPHIC);

    // once graphics overlay had loaded with a valid spatial reference, set the viewpoint to the graphics overlay extent
    mMapView.addSpatialReferenceChangedListener(spatialReferenceChangedEvent -> mMapView

    GraphicsOverlay graphicsOverlay = new GraphicsOverlay();
    // graphics no longer show after zooming passed this scale

    // create symbol dictionary from specification
    DictionarySymbolStyle symbolDictionary = DictionarySymbolStyle
        .createFromFile(getExternalFilesDir(null) + getString(R.string.mil2525d_stylx));

    // tells graphics overlay how to render graphics with symbol dictionary attributes set
    DictionaryRenderer renderer = new DictionaryRenderer(symbolDictionary);

    // parse graphic attributes from a XML file
    List<Map<String, Object>> messages = parseMessages();

    // create graphics with attributes and add to graphics overlay
    for (Map<String, Object> attributes : messages) {

   * Parses a XML file and creates a message for each block of attributes found.
  private List<Map<String, Object>> parseMessages() {
    final List<Map<String, Object>> messages = new ArrayList<>();
    try {
      // create an XML pull parser
      XmlPullParser parser = XmlPullParserFactory.newInstance().newPullParser();
      // load the XML file from the assets folder
      try (InputStream inputStream = getAssets().open(getString(R.string.mil2525dmessages_xml_file))) {
        parser.setInput(inputStream, null);
        // get the current event type from the parser
        int eventType = parser.getEventType();
        Map<String, Object> attributes = null;
        while (eventType != XmlPullParser.END_DOCUMENT) {
          if (eventType == XmlPullParser.START_TAG) {
            String name = parser.getName();
            // create a new attribute map for new message
            if (name.equals("message")) {
              attributes = new HashMap<>();
            } else if (attributes != null) {
              attributes.put(name, parser.nextText());
          eventType = parser.next();
    } catch (XmlPullParserException | IOException e) {
      Log.e(TAG, "Error reading XML file: " + e.getMessage());
    return messages;

   * Creates a graphic using a symbol dictionary and the attributes that were passed.
   * @param attributes tells symbol dictionary what symbol to apply to graphic
  private static Graphic createGraphic(Map<String, Object> attributes) {
    // get spatial reference
    int wkid = Integer.parseInt((String) attributes.get("_wkid"));
    SpatialReference spatialReference = SpatialReference.create(wkid);

    // get points from coordinates' string
    PointCollection points = new PointCollection(spatialReference);
    String[] coordinates = ((String) attributes.get("_control_points")).split(";");
    if (coordinates.length > 0) {
      for (String ordinate : coordinates) {
        String[] pointCoordinate = ordinate.split(",");
        if (pointCoordinate.length > 0) {
          Point point = new Point(Double.valueOf(pointCoordinate[0]), Double.valueOf(pointCoordinate[1]),
    // return a graphic with multipoint geometry
    return new Graphic(new Multipoint(points), attributes);

  protected void onPause() {

  protected void onResume() {

  protected void onDestroy() {