Translation, Scaling, Rotation, & Georeferencing

From a single feature to a large batch, by mouse move, or by precise numerical entry, images and vectors are simply movable objects in theEngine. Easily georeference multiple images and multiple shapefiles in one operation.

Move Anything Anywhere

This illustration shows the use of the move, stretch, and rotate tools in theEngine. These operate on images or vectors, all together or individually, or on individual pieces of vector files. In this example there are three photographs, and eight vector themes. Seven of the vectors, arise from two themes, the polylines and points shown just above the owl's ears. theEngine's 'clean & build' produced the polygon file, which originally lay on top of the lines. But with a single tool it was mouse-moved sideways, just as if it were an object on the screen. A copy was made of the themes with theEngine's ExtractSel function (which copied all three at the same time). These new themes were rotated (all together) with the rotate function, mouse moved again, and stretched using one of the three stretch tools. A second copy of the polygon theme was made, moved and fitted into the 'key' box. These mouse driven operations took only a few seconds. Finally, the images were called up with the Georeference function, and moved and stretched into position with the same tools, again it took only a few seconds. Each time an image is moved or stretched, the Georeferencing 'World File' is automatically updated. And each time a vector file is moved or stretched the area, length, and XY coordinates are recalculated and written to the database. The photograph cutouts are simply a white rectangular shapefile mask.

Easy Mouse Tools

toAnywhere, Move, Rotate, Horizontal Stretch, Vertical Stretch, XY Stretch

Easy Dialogue Boxes

2 Point Register, Set Reference Pin & Rectangle, Rubber Sheeting, Absolute Translate, Relative Translate, Rotate Vectors


Tools and functions, except the rotation function, work on all active themes, images or vectors, all at the same time. The rotation function works on all active vector themes only. Any graphics or texts in the view at the time are also rotated. The image moves cause a recalculation of the image affine transformation, and an automatic rewrite of the image 'World File'.

Tools and functions work on 'selected' vectors or on all vectors in a file if nothing is selected. This means that you can move, stretch or rotate just one feature (or a group of them) in a file, much as you would a CAD entity.

Any move, stretch or rotation of vector themes produces a visual graphics preview first. If committed to disk (a 'save') the areas, perimeters, lengths, and XY coordinates are recalculated, and written to the files.

Any move, stretch or rotations of vector themes containing islands or multiple shape records do not cause spikes.

Fitting to UTM

The map on the left was digitized in Microstation in a 'local' coordinate system. theEngine's AutoExtract function was used to automatically separate the drawing into individual shapefiles, in this case, classified by layer. The forest cover layer, originally digitized as polygons, became polylines when imported by the CAD reader into ArcView. theEngine's 'clean and build' function rebuild the polygons, and the line topology of the rivers. The 2pt. Registration function automatically moved and scaled the map to the desired UTM coordinate system, and recalculated new areas, lengths, and XY values in the database. Next the rotation function was used to rotate the map to fit the angular distortion of northern latitude UTM grids, again recalculating areas, and lengths. The final map is shown on the right.

Georeference Images

Four images are georeferenced to two reference coordinates together. The gap between them, shown white in this illustration, is exaggerated. The upper left red dot is a 'pin' placed by the first point plotted at the reference coordinates, the lower right corner of the red rectangle is the second point coordinate. The images can be mouse moved at will and a matching reference pixel can be fitted to the red 'pin', you can zoom very close to obtain accuracy. Next, one of the stretch tools can be used to pull the second reference pixel to the lower right corner, while the pixel at the 'pin' stays put, thus rubber sheeting all images to the reference coordinates. The World File is automatically updated for each image theme. The same operation can be achieved with a pop up dialogue box.