Editing Record Groups

At a glance


The tags field takes a comma-delimited list of one or more tags. For example:

Neatline’s tagging system provides a powerful and flexible way to slice and dice records into groups of related subsets. This can be useful for a number of reasons:

  .virginia {
      fill-color: #08c;

This automatically updates the “Fill Color” of all records in the exhibit tagged with virginia, even if there are hundreds of thousands of them. For more information about this, head over to the “Styling Exhibits with Neatline CSS” guide.

tags: precinct, democrat

And just show the records that are tagged with both precinct and democrat.

  Neatline.execute('MAP:load', { tags: ['2004', 'democrat'] });

Tag requirements

In order for the tags to work correctly, there are a couple important requirements:

  1. Tags can contain letters, numbers, and underscores (_), but no spaces or hyphens (-). Technically, it’s actually possible to use spaces and hyphens in tags, but it’s strongly discouraged, because it effectively results in multiple taggings. For example, if you had a tag called democrat-2012, Neatline would consider the record to be tagged with democrat, 2012, and democrat-2012. So, if you were to start using a more generalized tag called just democrat, queries for democrat would match the record, even though it’s tagged with the more specific democrat-2013. This is confusing, but, unfortunately, the issue lies at the level of the fulltext searching system in the underlying MySQL database that we use to implement the feature. We’re working on a fix for this - for now, if you need “spaces” in the tags, just use underscores (eg, democrat_2012).

  2. Tags must be at least 4 characters in length. Again, this is actually a requirement that’s built in to the fulltext searching system in MySQL. Really, though, this is a healthy constraint - tag names should be semantic and descriptive, so most tags should be longer than three letters anyway.

  3. Tags must be separated by commas, or else Neatline won’t know where one tag stops and another starts.


Each record is assigned to a “presenter,” which determines the mechanism by which the record’s content is displayed (the “Title” and “Body” fields). Out of the box, Neatline comes with two simple presenters - the “Static Bubble,” which displays the pop-up bubbles that appear when the cursor hovers or clicks on a record, and the “None” presenter, which, as you might guess, does nothing (this is useful for purely-visual annotations that don’t need any kind of text content - arrows, brackets, etc).

The Neatline plugin API makes it easy for developers to implement completely new presenters, which would then be available for selection in this field. For example, it would be easy to write a presenter that would add a “floating” bubble that would track the location of the cursor on the page, or a presenter that would open up a full-screen modal view. See the developer documentation for more information about creating new presenters.

Getting Started

Working with Exhibits

Working with Neatline Plugins

Working with Neatline Stylesheets

Working with the Neatline Editor


Text Tab

Map Tab

Style Tab

  • Editing Groups
  • Editing Colors
  • Editing Opacities
  • Editing Dimensions
  • Editing Dates
  • Editing Imagery
  • Editing Visibility