The starting point for leveraging Esri’s mapping and spatial analytics platform (ArcGIS Enterprise), through Python development, is a clear understanding of the ArcGIS API for Python.
The ArcGIS Application Program Interface (API) for Python
APIs, in essence are, a set of tools and objects for building or enhancing applications. They can work on a multitude of platforms (i.e. desktop, mobile and web); and allow for quick and powerful implementation with only a few lines of code. The ArcGIS API for Python uses this same model to provide GIS, mapping and spatial analytics functions that support querying, editing, sharing and countless other capabilities.
The pythonic ArcGIS API is available through the ArcGIS package and is distributed over several modules. Each module has specific functions that can be used to achieve desired objectives. The modules in the ArcGIS API for Python can be seen depicted in the image below.
Installation and Set up
There are many ways to install the arcgis API. The following article, https://developers.arcgis.com/
python/guide/install-and-set-up/ provides a deep dive into the various installation processes that can be used.
The GIS module
The GIS module is often considered the most important module in the pythonic GIS framework. This is because it not only provides access to spatial capabilities and geographical datasets, but because it also forms the entry point for working with the GIS and lets you manage its users, groups and content.
The GIS module: Application
The following example, looks at importing the GIS module and connecting to an ArcGIS Online account.
With these few lines of code, you now have the content and functionality of your ArcGIS Online account at your fingertips.
For example, you can now search for all the content in you GIS