Exploring Hide, Show, and Isolate in GMS

Many projects in GMS can end up being visually busy. Having a large grid and dozens of features can make it hard to see specific areas clearly. To help with this, GMS provides the Hide, Show, and Isolate functions.

How to Hide Cells

This feature allows you to select different project cells and simultaneously hide them from view in the Graphics Window.

  1. Select the individual, or group of cells that need to be hidden.
  2. Once it is highlighted, click the Hide macro in the toolbar, or right-click and select the Hide command.

Remember that when cells are hidden from view this does not mean they have been deleted from your project entirely. Even if they are not visible it is only necessary to select the Show macro on the toolbar and the hidden cells will reappear.

Also, hiding cells does not make those cells inactive. They will still be included in your model run.

How to Show Cells

To reverse the hidden elements, click the Show macro in the toolbar and any hidden cells in your project will reappear. This can be important if you have inherited a project and suspect there are hidden cells.

Isolating Cells

Isolating cells hides cells that are not selected, unlike Hide which hides the selected cells. To isolate cells:

  1. Select the cells in the Graphics Window you wish to isolate.
  2. Once cells are highlighted, select the Isolate macro on the toolbar, or right-click and select the Isolate command.

Using a Polygon

Another option for isolating or hiding cells is to use a polygon in the map coverage. To do this:

  1. Right-click on the selected polygon.
  2. Click Select Intersecting Objects from the menu that appears.
  3. In the Select Objects of Type dialog choose the geometric object to use.
  4. With the cells selected, you can now use the Hide or Isolate function.
Isolating cells using a polygon

Try using the Hide, Show, and Isolate features in GMS today!

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Sharing Display Themes in GMS

Display themes make showing off your groundwater model easier. A display theme is a set display parameters that can be saved in a project to be used repeatedly. But, after creating a display theme that works well, have you ever wanted to use that same display theme for a different project?

Display Theme Example

In GMS, display themes are saved with the project file. Therefore, importing a display theme into another project isn’t quite as simple as importing a raster file or image. However, the process isn’t all that complicated either.

To import a display theme from an existing project into a new project, do the following:

  1. Open the project with the display theme you want to import to other projects.
  2. Remove everything from the project except for the desired display theme.
  3. Use the Save As command to save the project with a different name. The project should only contain the display theme.
  4. Open the project that is to receive the display theme.
  5. Select the File | Open command.
  6. In the Open dialog, select the project containing the display theme and turn on the Import into current project option before clicking the Open button.

Using these steps will add the display theme to the existing project. The new display theme will appear in the Project Explorer.

Note that this project requires using the File | Open method of importing a file. The Open macro can also be used. Other methods for importing files into GMS, such as drag-and-drop, will not work.

Also, be aware that when importing a display theme into an existing project, the display theme will only work with data like that in the original project. For example, a display theme built for a project using 3D UGrids will not work with a project that uses 2D grids.

Display themes are a great tool for visualizing your data in GMS. Try saving and sharing them in GMS today!

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Importing and Exporting Shapefiles

If you have data in GMS, SMS, or WMS that needs to be shared with another application, one of the easiest ways to share this data is through shapefiles. GMS, SMS, and WMS can all import and export shapefiles, though there are some differences between them. This article goes over some of those differences.

Importing Shapefiles

When you import shapefiles into GMS, SMS, or WMS, they will be loaded under the GIS module. Shapefiles can be imported just like any other file using the File | Open command, the Open File macro, or dragging the file icon on the interface. From there, you can use the conversion commands to move the shapefile data into other modules.

Exporting Shapefiles

Though GMS, SMS, and WMS have a lot of similarities they each vary from the other when it comes to saving a shapefile. In general DEMs, TINs, feature objects, and grids can be saved through the right-click menu in GMS; the file menu in SMS; and through both the right-click menu and file menu in WMS.

Export command

Shapefiles can be exported through the right-click menu.

  1. Right-click on the item in the Project Explorer and select Export to bring up the Export dialog.
  2. In this dialog you can change the "Save as type" to "Shapefile (*.shp)".

The following items can be exported as shapefiles.

  • TINs
  • 3D Grids
  • Feature Objects
  • DEMs

Shapefiles can be exported through the File menu.

  1. Select the item in the Project Explorer, then File | Save As to bring up the Save As dialog.
  2. In this dialog you can change the "Save as type" to "Shapefile (*.shp)".

The following items can be exported as shapefiles.

  • Scatter Sets
  • 2D Grids
  • Feature Objects
  • Raster Files

Shapefiles can be exported through the right-click menu and through the File menu.

  1. Select the item in the Project Explorer, then File | Save As to bring up the Save As dialog.
  2. In this dialog you can change the "Save as type" to "Shapefile (*.shp)".
  3. Alternatively, you can right-click and select Save As to bring up the same dialog.
The following items can be exported as shapefiles.
  • TINs
  • 2D Grids
  • Feature Objects
  • DEMs

Now that you know a little more about using shapefiles in XMS, try using them in your GMS, SMS, or WMS projects today!

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Understanding Projections vs. Reproject

Have you ever wondered what the difference between projection and reprojection is? Have you ever needed to convert a projection from one type to another in GMS, SMS, or WMS (collectively known as XMS)? The use of projections in WMS can be confusing, so the following should provide further clarification.

Specifying Projections

Projections can be associated with individual data objects, either in the object data file itself or in an associated *.prj file. If XMS cannot find a projection, the object will be left as "no projection," or, when new objects are created, XMS will assign the display projection to it. You can specify an object's projection by right-clicking on it and selecting Projection. Note that this projection must be the same as the original projection of the data; specifying an incorrect projection will result in data issues.

Reprojecting on the Fly

"Reprojecting on the Fly" occurs when datasets or objects from multiple projections are loaded into a project, where the x and y values would not otherwise overlap (i.e., the data would be displayed in two or more distinct locations). The different projections for these data will be "reprojected on the fly" to match the display projection such that the data objects will line up. Note that this does not change any *.prj files or the projections that are set for each object; it is an automatic function internal to XMS used for display purposes.

Converting a Projection

If you need to convert from one projection to another, this can be done by right-clicking on it and choosing Reproject. To use this command, the data must first have the correct projection specified. After choosing Reproject, the command will prompt the user to select a new projection, the data will be converted to the selected projection. If a *.prj file is associated with the object (such as a TIFF), reprojecting the object will change the *.prj file. Reprojection on the fly is usually sufficient for most applications. Please note that there are some limitations for reprojecting.

Reporject Dialog Example

Once the datasets are referencing their projection correctly, XMS should reproject them on the fly to match your display projection. If you don't have a display projection set, you can do so by selecting the Display menu and choosing Projection. At that point, if you would like to reproject your scatter(s) into the same projection as the display projection, you would be able to do so.

Now that you see the differences between projection vs. reproject try them out in XMS today!

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