Scene property expressions

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Sample viewer app

Update the orientation of a graphic using expressions based on its attributes.

Image of scene property expressions

Use case

Instead of reading the attribute and changing the rotation on the symbol for a single graphic (a manual CPU operation), you can bind the rotation to an expression that applies to the whole overlay (an automatic GPU operation). This usually results in a noticeable performance boost (smooth rotations).

How to use the sample

Adjust the heading and pitch sliders to rotate the cone.

How it works

  1. Create a new GraphicsOverlay.
  2. Create a new SimpleRenderer.
  3. Set the heading expression to [HEADING] and the pitch expression to [PITCH] with simpleRenderer.getSceneProperties().setHeadingExpression(...).
  4. Apply the renderer to the graphics overlay with graphicsOverlay.setRenderer(simpleRenderer).
  5. Create a new Point and a new Graphic and add it to the overlay with e.g. graphicsOverlay.getGraphics().add(graphic).
  6. To update the graphic's rotation, update the HEADING or PITCH property in the graphic's attributes with graphic.getAttributes().put(key, value).

Relevant API

  • Graphic
  • GraphicsOverlay
  • SceneProperties
  • SceneProperties.setHeadingExpression
  • SceneProperties.setPitchExpression
  • SimpleRenderer


3D, expression, graphics, heading, pitch, rotation, scene, symbology

Sample Code
 *  Copyright 2019 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
 * Unless required by applicable law or agreed to in writing, software
 *  distributed under the License is distributed on an "AS IS" BASIS,
 *  WITHOUT WARRANTIES OR CONDITIONS OF ANY KIND, either express or implied.
 *  See the License for the specific language governing permissions and
 *  limitations under the License.

package com.esri.arcgisruntime.sample.scenepropertyexpressions;

import android.os.Bundle;
import android.widget.SeekBar;

import com.esri.arcgisruntime.geometry.Point;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.geometry.SpatialReferences;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.mapping.ArcGISScene;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.mapping.Basemap;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.mapping.view.Camera;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.mapping.view.Graphic;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.mapping.view.GraphicsOverlay;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.mapping.view.LayerSceneProperties;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.mapping.view.SceneView;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.symbology.SceneSymbol;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.symbology.SimpleMarkerSceneSymbol;
import com.esri.arcgisruntime.symbology.SimpleRenderer;

public class MainActivity extends AppCompatActivity {

  private SceneView mSceneView;

  private static final int PITCH_OFFSET = 90;
  private static final String HEADING_EXPRESSION = "HEADING";
  private static final String PITCH_EXPRESSION = "PITCH";

  protected void onCreate(Bundle savedInstanceState) {

    // get a reference to the scene view
    mSceneView = findViewById(;

    // create a scene with an imagery basemap
    ArcGISScene scene = new ArcGISScene(Basemap.Type.IMAGERY);

    // add the SceneView to the stack pane

    // add a camera and initial camera position
    Point point = new Point(83.9, 28.4, 1000, SpatialReferences.getWgs84());
    Camera camera = new Camera(point, 1000, 0, 50, 0);

    // create a graphics overlay
    GraphicsOverlay graphicsOverlay = new GraphicsOverlay();

    // add renderer using rotation expressions
    SimpleRenderer renderer = new SimpleRenderer();
    renderer.getSceneProperties().setHeadingExpression('[' + HEADING_EXPRESSION + ']');
    renderer.getSceneProperties().setPitchExpression('[' + PITCH_EXPRESSION + ']');

    // create a red cone graphic
    // in this sample we've set the anchor position to center. By default, the anchor position is BOTTOM
    SimpleMarkerSceneSymbol coneSymbol = SimpleMarkerSceneSymbol.createCone(Color.RED, 100, 100, SceneSymbol.AnchorPosition.CENTER);
    coneSymbol.setPitch(-PITCH_OFFSET);  // correct symbol's default pitch
    Graphic cone = new Graphic(new Point(83.9, 28.41, 200, SpatialReferences.getWgs84()), coneSymbol);

    // bind attribute based on values in seek bars
    SeekBar headingSeekBar = findViewById(;
    cone.getAttributes().put(HEADING_EXPRESSION, headingSeekBar.getProgress());
    headingSeekBar.setOnSeekBarChangeListener(new SeekBar.OnSeekBarChangeListener() {
      @Override public void onProgressChanged(SeekBar seekBar, int progress, boolean fromUser) {
        cone.getAttributes().put(HEADING_EXPRESSION, progress);

      @Override public void onStartTrackingTouch(SeekBar seekBar) {


      @Override public void onStopTrackingTouch(SeekBar seekBar) {

    SeekBar pitchSeekBar = findViewById(;
    cone.getAttributes().put(PITCH_EXPRESSION, pitchSeekBar.getProgress() - PITCH_OFFSET);
    pitchSeekBar.setOnSeekBarChangeListener(new SeekBar.OnSeekBarChangeListener() {
      @Override public void onProgressChanged(SeekBar seekBar, int progress, boolean fromUser) {
        cone.getAttributes().put(PITCH_EXPRESSION, progress - PITCH_OFFSET);

      @Override public void onStartTrackingTouch(SeekBar seekBar) {


      @Override public void onStopTrackingTouch(SeekBar seekBar) {


  protected void onPause() {

  protected void onResume() {

  protected void onDestroy() {