Aliases are alternative names given to fields in a dataset that are often more descriptive than the actual field name. Most users of FME who work with a Geodatabase will want to be able to create or maintain field aliases within their datasets. When adding a File Geodatabase to a workspace, alias control can be found under Schema Attributes > Alias Mode.
Alias Mode controls how Geodatabase aliases are used.
Community Centres (ESRI File Geodatabase Feature Class)
In the above image, we see a visualization of the Community Centres feature class and its accompanying attributes containing values for Name, Address and Website URL of the various community centres located in the city of Vancouver. By examining the properties of this feature class, one can see that field aliases are present in the data.
1. Read Source Data - (ESRI Geodatabase - File Geodb ArcObjects)
Community Centre feature geometry and attributes are read from the Geodatabase feature class source file using the ESRI Geodatabase (File Geodb ArcObject) reader, providing the features, attributes, and alias definitions for the destination Geodatabase feature class. When adding the source feature class data, click on the reader parameters button in order to select the Community Centre table from the Table List parameter and set Alias Mode to the "Expose Aliases as Metadata Attributes" option.
By exposing the aliases as metadata, a <name>_alias attribute will be added to the incoming data. This attribute will be used to store the alias value for the corresponding attribute.
2. Alter Alias Values
The AttributeManager is used to access the <name>_alias attributes exposed in Step 1 and assign the Geodatabase attribute aliases new values. In the AttributeManager properties, simply type in the <name>_alias attributes you wish to change under Output Attribute and set the Attribute Value to contain the altered value you wish to write to the destination alias definition.
It is of note that this step could alternatively be accomplished using the AttributeCreator.
3. Write Alias Values to Destination Geodatabase
Add the ESRI Geodatabase (File Geodb ArcObject) writer and specify the output Geodatabase to which the data will be written (i.e. VancouverCity). Once added, connect the output of the AttributeManager to the Geodatabase writer. As an optional step, if you wish to write the Community Centres data to a feature dataset, double-click on the Geodatabase writer and, under Format Parameters, type "Community" in the Feature Dataset area. Save and run the workspace.
* The ESRI Geodatabase (File Geodb ArcObject) reader/writer used in the above example requires that a licensed version of ArcGIS be available to the user. For more information on required ArcGIS license levels, please see Required ArcGIS License Types for FME Geodatabase Formats.
FME is able to create attribute aliases for features read into the workspace that do not have aliases. This is possible if there is an additional attribute with the same name as the original attribute and is suffixed with "_alias". The value of that attribute will be used as the alias on table creation.
For example: there is an attribute named CentreAddress and there is another attribute named CentreAddress_alias with a value of Address. The value of CentreAddresss_alias will be used as the alias of CentreAddress (alias: Address). This only needs to occur on the first feature.
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