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The March 2020 update to Power BI desktop is a full one, as this blog shows!
Part nine of a eleven-part series of blogs

New goodies in this month's update include the roll-out (sort of) of the new ribbon, new actions for buttons, multi-column sorting and a second axis for line charts.

  1. The March 2020 Power BI Desktop Update
  2. The new ribbon is live (sort of)
  3. Page navigation buttons
  4. Drill-through navigation buttons
  5. Multi-column sorting
  6. Searching in the filter pane
  7. Line charts can now have a dual axis
  8. The new DAX COALESCE function
  9. Changes to ArcGIS (this blog)
  10. Query Diagnostics
  11. Generating embed codes is now turned off by default

For a cumulative list of all of the updates to Power BI Desktop in the last few years see this blog, or have a look at the Power BI courses that we run.

Posted by Andy Brown on 14 March 2020

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Changes to ArcGIS

There have been a fair few changes to ArcGIS maps, although most of them are for people with deep pockets!

I might be tempted to use the MapBox custom visual instead - unless you're a mapping pro it seems to give cleaner maps, and it's easier to use.

A new table of contents

When you add a data field to an ArcGIS map, you can see a guide to its data points:

ArcGIS map

The table of contents on the left shows a guide to the points on the map.

Different connection options

When you first create an ArcGIS visual, you have the choice of which type of connection you want to use:

Connection options

You can only use the first two options if you have a premium app subscription.  Buying a subscription to ArcGIS online for Power BI came up with a quote of £89 for a Wise Owl account, although I didn't click on the Buy button!

 

The main benefits of upgrading from the standard version would appear to be:

Benefit Notes
Bigger data limits In the standard version you're limited to 3,500 data points per map, with a monthly limit of 100,000 points; in the paid version it's 10,000 points per month with no monthly limit.
Custom layers In the standard version you can't create your own ArcGIS layers and add them to your maps; in the paid version you can.

You can see Microsoft's full list of the differences between the versions here.

ArcGIS Enterprise account

This has emerged from preview.  Provided you're willing to pay for a premium app subscription, you can now connect to your company's Enterprise account and share data securely internally.

This gets round the fact that historically when you view a map you send the summary level data needed to construct it to a third-party company, with no control over where this data is stored.

Multiple reference layers

In the standard version of ArcGIS you can still only have one reference layer:

Reference layers

This reference layer is showing areas in the UK prone to flood. If I try to add another reference layer, this one will be removed.

However, in the paid version of ArcGIS you can now have multiple reference layers.  These can be either reference layers published and shared online by the ArcGIS community or ones created within your organisation.

 

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