GEOG 485:
GIS Programming and Automation

3.3 Writing vector attribute data

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In the same way that you use cursors to read vector attribute data, you use cursors to write data as well. Two types of cursors are supplied for writing data:

  • Update cursor - This cursor edits values in existing records or deletes records
  • Insert cursor - This cursor inserts new records

In the following sections you'll learn about both of these cursors and get some tips for using them.

Required reading

The ArcGIS Desktop Help has some explanation of cursors. Get familiar with this help now, as it will prepare you for the next sections of the lesson. You'll also find it helpful to return to the code examples while working on Project 3:

Accessing data using cursors

Also follow the three links in the table at the beginning of the above topic. These briefly explain the InsertCursor, SearchCursor, and UpdateCursor and provide a code example for each. You've already worked with SearchCursor, but closely examine the code examples for all three cursor types and see if you can determine what is happening in each.