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Adding new content

Adding new content on Granicus Open Data.

Your Granicus Open Data site is an access point for citizens to connect with your open data, but data isn't the only content you can add. Granicus Open Data is designed to showcase your open data in a number of ways to best engage site visitors and demonstrate tangible value.   

There is a variety of content types at your disposal, and it's up to you to choose which best suits your needs. What are you aiming for? What kind of experience do you want your site visitors to have? The answers to these questions will help you decide which content type is right. In some cases, like data content, it's not a complicated choice. Data Stories and Dashboards are less obvious content types to use. As a Site Manager, you think about the site as a whole and how all the content flows together to create a transformative experience for citizens. 

As you might expect, the early stages of creating your Granicus Open Data site will involve adding more new content than later stages, which involve more content management. Some content, like Resources, might get added every day as new data is made open in many different data formats. Alternatively, Group is a less frequently added piece of content. 

As a Site Manager, you might be involved in adding content in earlier stages and gradually become less involved, or you might never directly generate content. In either case, it's important to understand what content can be added, how it is used and how often, and the overall process so that you can effectively manage your Granicus Open Data site and support your team.  

 

Here's the breakdown of content by most frequently added:

1. Resource. The most basic piece of content as well as the most abundant. Resources are the actual files that represent your open data. 

2. Dataset. "Containers" that hold Resources. Datasets are given metadata such as author, open data license type, frequency of publication, and they can be assigned to Groups.

3. Visualizations. Visualizations take Resources on your Granicus Open Data site and generate visual representations to make data understandable and accessible. 

4. Data Story. Similar to a blog post, Data Stories provide a narrative that adds the depth of impact. Stories focus on how data changes real lives every day. 

5. Dashboard. A piece of content that curates all kinds of content on your Granicus Open Data site. Dashboards make it easy to put data, media, and narrative into meaningful conversation. 

6. Group. Groups both collect content with a common data publisher as well as provide a workflow for a group of users on your Granicus Open Data site. 

 

Where do I add new content?

Using the Add content menu. The most direct path for creating content is through the Add content menu item on the Admin Menu bar. If you're ready to jump right into creating content select the content type and begin completing the fields in the form.

 

 

Using the Content menu. In some cases you may want to see what content exists before creating something from scratch. As a Site Manager you're able to view and edit all the content that has been authored on your Granicus Open Data site. It's not uncommon that content is added but never completed, is complete but outdated, or simply has an unpublished status. As your site matures and contains more content, it's helpful to check what already exists before starting a new piece of content.

You can use the Content menu item to get to the Content screen where you can see all existing content, filter and search, and add new content. 

 

 

Adding new content. 

Select the content type that meets your needs to start adding new content. Most of the time, adding a new piece of content is as straightforward as filling out all the fields in a form where some fields are required and others are optional fields for additional information that provide context. 

In the example below, the Site Manager is adding a new Dataset with Tags, Topics, and other metadata associated with Datasets. Though not all the fields in the form are required, it's best to include as much information as possible. Complete content gives your site visitors confidence that your content is professional, current, and polished. 

 

 

General site visitors typically won't have the context or topical expertise to understand the information on its own, so it's important to be mindful of your audience when deciding what details to include.  

 

 

The final step in creating a piece of content is using the submenu at the bottom of the form to add the final administrative information to the content. Administrative info is kept behind the scenes, and it helps with content management. The image below shows a submenu common to all content that is added or edited as a Site Manager. Keep in mind that your role gives you more permissions than other users on the site; other users with lower-access roles won't see most of these options.

 

 

Use this menu to add information about:

  • URL path settings. By default, the Generate automatic URL alias option is selected because Granicus Open Data is designed to provide the most intuitive and SEO-optimized URL path. To create your own path, simply uncheck the box and type in your own alias. As a reminder, the URL path is how site visitors access and find your content. You want to use terms that are likely to be searched by a general site visitor. 
  • Revision information. This information is important for content that has been added and then edited. By checking the Create new revision checkbox, Granicus Open Data will create a revision of the content. You can think of this like a new version where the changes are tracked and recorded. Revisions can be incredibly helpful if a change is made and published and later you want revert to an old revision. Include notes about the changes in the Revision log message text box to give other users context for changes made to the content. 
  • Authoring information. In Granicus Open Data, content must be assigned to an author and given an authoring date so that it can be managed later even if the author is the Anonymous user. An author must be a user on your Granicus Open Data site, and this is helpful in knowing which users have added what content. By default, Granicus Open Data assigns the author to the user who is logged in when the content is added. Though the author and publishing date is mostly only important for content management behind the scenes, there are some cases when you might want to change the author information on a piece of content. 

    To change the author you can begin typing a user and the field will autocomplete. Leave the field blank to assign the author to Anonymous. You can change the Authored on information by simply typing a new date into the field. If you leave the field blank, Granicus Open Data will use the date and time of when the content was originally saved. 

 

  • Publishing options. As a Site Manager you can publish and unpublish content. Published content is saved and visible on your Granicus Open Data site. Unpublished content is saved, but it is not visible on your Granicus Open Data site. 

    As a Site Manager you can publish and unpublish directly from the piece of content. When adding new content, the status will automatically default to published. By unchecking the Published checkbox, you can save the work without publishing it to your live Granicus Open Data site. If the content already exists and appears on your Granicus Open Data site, you can unpublish the content by unchecking the box and it will no longer be visible or searchable to general site visitors.  

 

  • Groups. When creating a Dataset, you'll have an additional submenu item to consider. The Groups menu item is unique to Datasets because it's the only content that can be added to a Group. Resources cannot be added themselves to a Group, they must be in a Dataset. When adding a Dataset to a Group, users can add a Dataset to as many Groups as there are on the site. Your groups are Groups that the user authoring the content belongs to, and Other groups are all the Groups of which a user is not a member. All users must belong to at least one Group to have the Groups menu item available to them. 

When a Dataset is added to a Group, it will be included on the Group's home page and may be edited by the Administrator members of a Group. As a best practice, users should only add Datasets to Groups that they are a member. Certain users won't be able to access their own content if they assign it to a Group that they do not belong to. 

 

 

More specifics about adding content. 

Generally, adding a new piece of content is as straightforward as filling out all the fields in a form where some are required and others are just additional information to provide context. The process is simple, but there are some specifics about each content type to be keep in mind as you are adding new content. 

 

Adding a Resource. 

Resource is the most basic piece of content as well as the most abundant. Resources are the actual files that represent your open data. You have 3 different options for how you can add a Resource.

1. Link to a file. You may have a digital file that is hosted on the web. This is an external link, and you can add a Resource by providing the weblink as long as the file extension is supported by Granicus Open Data. Later in the form, you can specify exactly what type of file format your data is in. 

2. Link to an API. Similar to how you can add a Resource by linking to an external link, you can also add an API this way. APIs are used by technical users and are helpful in making your open data more accessible. 

3. Upload a file. Most commonly, Resources are added from the local storage on a computer. That is, files are uploaded directly from a computer. This option is a straightforward process of selecting the file from a computer and then uploaded.  

Keep in mind, that any CSV files can be imported to the Granicus Open Data Datastore (recommended). 

 

 

It's possible to add a Resource as a stand alone piece of content, but it isn't recommended. Best practice is to add a Resource associated with a Dataset for 2 important reasons: 

  • Resources don't contain metadata. Dataset is the content type that contains metadata, Tags, Topics and are assigned to Groups. A Resource must be in a Dataset to be associated with that information. Additional information provides a clearer picture of the value of your data and makes it easier for site visitors to find as they browse your Granicus Open Data site (and the Web in general). Categorizations like Topics and Groups keep relevant content together and ready to discover. Datasets act as containers for Resources with common information and any new Resource added to a Dataset is automatically associated with the metadata. 
  • A Resource can't be added to a Group. Only Datasets can be added to a Group. Groups may appear similar to Topics because they collect related content, but Groups do much more. Groups represent a common data publisher, and all the Datasets that belong to that publishing Group will appear on the Group's home page. Most importantly, Groups create an additional workflow for how data on the site is added and managed. Datasets in a Group can be managed exclusively by members in that Group. Resources have to be included in a Dataset in order to belong to a Group. 

 

 

When adding a new Resource, Granicus Open Data provides a list of existing Datasets and you can select the appropriate one. If none of the existing Datasets seem correct, then consider first adding a new Dataset. You can also add a Resource and then later assign it to a Dataset.

 

Adding a Dataset. 

Datasets are "Containers" that hold Resources. Datasets are given metadata such as author, open data license type, frequency of publication and can be assigned to Groups when they are added. 

The most important thing to remember with Datasets is to include as much information as possible from the Title to Related Content. Descriptions, Tags, coverage area, how often the data are published, a person to contact–it may seem like a lot of information to include, but it provides essential context for site visitors. The level of detail on a Dataset could be the difference between a site visitor simply glossing past and becoming an engaged, active citizen.  

In the example below, you can see all the fields included when adding a Dataset. Metadata fields make Datasets the most information-rich type of content, and the fields are designed to make your data publishing practices compliant with Project Open Data standards

 

 

Change the Resource URL. When adding or editing a Dataset, you can change the URL path so that it's easier to read as well as more likely to appear in a site visitor's search. An important consideration when creating titles and labels is to keep in mind how site visitors look for information. It's safe to assume that most site visitors won't start by looking for your Granicus Open Data site. More likely is that they'll first do a general search on the Web. A random Dataset might be the first and only interaction a person has with your Granicus Open Data site. That's why it's best to include lots of contextual information, make it easy to read and scan, and use terms that site visitors are likely to search for.  

Directly under the title of the Dataset, you can change the URL path for your dataset in the dataset/ field. Note that the title and URL path are not linked. That means that you can change the title without affecting the URL path and vice versa. 

 

 

Adding metadata. Metadata is often described as the "Who, what, when, where, and why" of a Dataset. Metadata gives a high-level view by providing additional information about the files in the Dataset. Without metadata, site visitors could download the contents of a file but they wouldn't have any information about who provided the file, when it was published, how often it is published, the time range and geographic area that the file represents, and so on. In addition to providing important context, metadata makes the data published machine-readable. That means that programmers, analysts and other technical users can use the information for their own purposes.

 

 

On Granicus Open Data, metadata is added by a series of extra fields that can range from fairly to basic (like the author) to advanced details (like the granularity of the data). Though most metadata is not required, adding more details makes for richer, more usable datasets. It's a good idea to provide additional information whenever it is available. In some cases extra metadata fields are required to be compliant with certain standards and initiatives.

 

 

When viewing a Dataset, scroll down the page to the Dataset Info section to view its metadata.

 

 

Adding more relevant information. In the image below, you can see a section titled Resources and below that Related Content. In the Resources section you can choose from existing Resources to pull into the Dataset. You can even choose the order Resources appear in by dragging the individual rows up and down. Click the Add another item to add as many Resources as you want to the Dataset. 

 

 

Scroll to the Related Content section to add links to other content that site visitors should see. This is a great way to link to your Data Stories, Charts, and Dashboards (or external links) that showcase the impact that data can have on the daily lives of citizens. 

Below is a Dataset that has been filled out completely with a description, metadata, assigned to a Group and includes related content. 

 

 

Visualizations. 

Visualizations take Resources on your Granicus Open Data site and generate visual representations to make data understandable and accessible. Granicus Open Data offers several built-in tools for making data visualizations easy. These were designed with ease of use and flexibility in mind. A Chart is the means, but the end must be defined by the citizen need. What is important for the site visitor to know about the data? What can we learn by comparing the different information contained in a single Resource? Once a Chart is added you can feature it to support the narrative of a Data Story or complete a Data Dashboard.

While this tool is incredibly powerful, it also includes more variables that depend on one another. As a Site Manager, you have access to create Visualizations on Granicus Open Data. This type of content is unique to Site Managers and Editors, and as a Site Manager you have access to manage all content regardless of the author.

 

 

Adding Charts. In general, you'll add Granicus Open Data Charts for your visualizations. Charts are a powerful tool for taking data and making it meaningful to the average site visitor who may have little to no experience with data and analysis. Charts offer power and flexibility to represent exactly what you’re looking for with minimal effort and no specific technical training required. Data that power charts can come directly from your Granicus Open Data data catalog or alternatively any URL, public Google spreadsheet, or data proxy/API.

Charts are ideal for showing comparative and/or historical information. Site visitors can look at a Chart and quickly discern the relationship between several data points. Charts easily adapt to represent a number of combinations between many values. Visualizations may range from a simple 2-dimensional comparison to more complex, multi-faceted relationships.

 

Supported data and file types. 

  • Using internal CSV files. Charts visualize data that has its contents organized into rows and columns (tabular data). Granicus Open Data Charts support CSV files when selecting an internal Resource hosted on Granicus Open Data. Select the CSV option for the backend when loading the data source.
  • External CSV and XLS files. You can create a Chart from files hosted elsewhere on the Web as long as a link is provided. Linked files can be a CSV or XLS. When files are externally linked select the DataProxy option for the backend when loading the data source.
  • Using Google spreadsheets. Public Google spreadsheets are files created with Google sheets that have been published to the Web. You can create your Chart with the public link and by selecting the Google spreadsheet option for the backend when loading the data source.

 

Choosing your data. The first step in adding a Chart is choosing which data you want to visualize. Choose a title and add a description, then select the data source. You have a 3 options for selecting the data source:

  • Upload a new file. This is a file stored locally (ie a file on your computer’s hard drive) and not already on your Granicus Open Data site. Uploading a file to power your Chart does not automatically add the file as a Resource on your Granicus Open Data site. Use the Upload button in the File field to choose a file from your computer. Note file size and type limits apply.

  • Choose an existing Resource. Select a Resource that has been added to your Granicus Open Data site. Start typing in the Existing Resource field and Granicus Open Data will autocomplete with matching Resources. 

  • Link to an external file. Use the Source field to link to a file hosted elsewhere on the Web.

 

Choose a data processor. Once you select the data source, it’s important to choose the right data backend to process the data. The processor reads the contents of a file and makes it possible to define which variables should be visualized. This works in the background, but you should know which data sources match which data backends. There are 3 data backend to choose from:

  • CSV. CSV is the default selection, and it is used for Charts powered by internal data sources. If you upload a new file or select an existing Resource as your data source then your data backend is CSV.

  • DataProxy. If you use an external link for the data source, you may use a CSV or XLS file type. An external link is the only way to power a Chart with an XLS file. If you select a data source by using an external link then your data backend is DataProxy. 

  • Google Spreadsheet. You can power a Chart with a Google spreadsheet if the document has been published to the Web and made public. If you select the public link to a Google spreadsheet then Google Spreadsheet is your data backend.

 

 

Defining your Chart variables. In essence, Chart variables are the two axes of your Chart that you set. The x-axis and the y-axis each have their own set of values that run along each respective axis. Because Resources often contain more than two columns (all with their own set of values), you can choose which columns you want as the x- and y-axis as well as add SeriesSeries can be selected from the different columns within your Resource to compare multiple columns along the Chart axes. This provides flexibility when using large files to create Charts.

You can choose which contents within the data source to display on your Chart. Some data sources may be fairly simple with only a couple columns while others may contain thousands. Options for the variables are based on the contents of the data source selected to power your Granicus Open Data Chart, so you’ll choose from columns and their values. There are 3 variables to select for when adding your Chart:

  • Series. Series show the values within a column as the y-axis values mapped along the X-Field values. Once you choose a column to provide the values for the X-Field, Series provide the corresponding y-values. You can choose multiple columns from your Resource to be Series, which can be helpful for showing multiple data points next to one another.

  • X-Field. The X-Field provides the x-axis values for your Chart. Choose a column from your Resource to populate the X-Field with values.

  • Data Format. Selecting the correct data format helps Charts to display correctly. Choose the format that matches the format of the values in your X-Field. If you’re not sure, you can leave the selection on Auto and Granicus Open Data will make the best selection. If the values are text/non-numeric, select the String format.

 

Choose a Chart type. Different types of data work better with certain Chart types more than others. Granicus Open Data offers a number of different Chart types like line graphs, bar charts, and pie charts and different types of data will work better as a line graph rather than a bar chart. For continuous data (like time) use a line Chart to show the movement of the data. For categorical data (like a discrete totals within a category) use bar charts, and for data that totals a sum you can use a pie chart.

There are a number of Chart types to best display your data depending on what you want the Chart to show and the contents of your Resource. You can choose a Chart type and then move to the Preview and Adjust screen to make the final modifications to your Chart. You can always change the Chart type by using the Back button, so that you can test and see which Chart type works best with your data.

 

 

In the example below, the Site Manager is adding a Chart that uses an existing Resource. By typing, Granicus Open Data suggests an autocomplete option and the Site Manager selects the Resource. Once the Resource is selected, the Site Manager can define the variables of the Chart. In this example, the Resource is very basic with only two columns that be chosen from, but more robust Resources could have several columns to choose from. 

 

 

Adjusting your Chart settings. After the data is loaded and the variables selected, you can see how your Chart will appear and make adjustments so that your visualization best depicts the meaning of the data. On the Preview and Adjust screen, you make any final modifications to your Chart through a number of options on the Chart Configuration menu. The Chart preview will adjust in real-time to show you what the Chart will look like on your site. Use the preview to test out different adjustments for your Chart settings. 

In the example below, a Site Manager is adjusting the Chart settings for a Chart they're adding. Though there are a number of options, the data here is fairly basic. The Site Manager rotates the labels by putting in a degree of rotation in the X Label Rotation field, changes the color of bars by adding a hex value in the Color field, and adds a label to the x-axis by putting a name in the X Axis Label field. 

 

 

As the example continues below, the Site Manager decides to show the title of the Chart and selects the Show Legend option. Show Tooltips and Reduce Ticks are selected by default. Click on the Finish button at the bottom of the page to finalize your selections and see the final results of how the Chart will appear on your Granicus Open Data site.

Unlike other content types, Charts don't automatically collect on a page on your Granicus Open Data site. You can make Charts visible by including them in Dashboards and Data Stories. 

 

 

Key information when adjusting your Chart settings:

  • Query Editor. The Query Editor field lets you search the contents of the Resource powering your Chart and visualize the most relevant pieces. This function is useful for especially large Datasets. Use this setting to perform a complex search on the data in your Resource and narrow the focus to display on your Chart. It's good for highlighting key insights in the data. Use the same format conventions as in the Resource (ie $0.00, x/y/z) when performing the search.

 

  • Filter Editor. Terms add a broad filter to highlight characteristics shared by multiple data points in your Resource. This is adds more focus than visualizing all the contents of a Resource, but is not very overly complex. Use this to draw specific comparisons in your visualization. Add multiple filters to give a specific cross-section within the data.
    • Field. Create a term to filter the data by first choosing a Field from a column within the Resource. All the columns will appear in a drop-down menu to choose from. Use terms to narrow the view of the data.
    • Filter Type. Choose from the drop-down list to further specify conditions for the data you’re looking for within the Field you’ve already selected.

 

  • X-axis Chart Settings. These settings are specific to the x-axis. 
    • X-Format. Choosing the X-Format lets you specify how the x-axis values are represented rather than as the basic numbers. For example, the value 5.2 will show as $5.20 if the X-Format is $0.00.
    • X Label Rotation. Use this to rotate the values of the x-axis of your Chart. With 0 degrees rotation, the labels appear side by side. Enter a number to add a degree of rotation and the labels will appear at an angle.
    • Step. Set the number of increments that will appear on the x-axis. The total distance on the x-axis from the 0 value to the final value will be divided into the number of increments set. By default, the Step is not set.
    • Tick Values. Set a range of values from your Resource to narrow which values appear on your Chart. By default, every value in the Resource is displayed.
    • X Axis Label. This is the name that describes the x-axis and appears on your Granicus Open Data Chart below the x-axis. Create a label to provide more context for the data being visualized.

 

  • Y-axis Chart Settings. These settings are specific to the y-axis.

    • Format. Choosing the Format lets you specify how the y-axis values are represented rather than as basic numbers. For example, the value 5.2 will show as $5.20 if the Format is $0.00.
    • Y Axis Label. This is the name that describes the y-axis and appears on your Granicus Open Data Chart below the y-axis. Create a label to provide more context for the data being visualized. 
    • Distance. The distance of the Y Axis Label from the left edge of the page. The larger the number, the closer the label appears to the y-axis of your Chart.

 

  • General Chart Settings.

    • Goal. This setting creates a line at the value you designate on the Chart. It signifies a baseline, an average, or a goal among the values to compare the rest of the data. Enter a value in the Goal field to select the value to appear parallel to the x-axis. You can also choose the color of the line, whether you want to show the label (the label is "Target" and cannot be changed), and if the label should appear directly on the chart or outside of it. 
    • Sort. Choose which criteria the Chart sorts data by and displays on the graph, like A-Z or highest to lowest. Criteria could be values from the Chart variables or left to the default sort setting.
    • Color. Change the color of the segments of your Chart by adding color names (blue, green, etc.) or the hexadecimal numbers of specific hues (#FFD9AA , #FFFFFF). You can also use the color selection tool to visually select a color rather than by typing it in. You can add any number of different colors for the Chart segments by adding commas in between colors.
    • Transition Time. Change the time it takes to animate the data in a Chart. Longer transition time will make the sections of a Chart appear more slowly. Note: this does not affect pie charts.
    • Margin. Margins add padding (extra white space) around your Chart, measured in pixels. Padding is added to the top, right, bottom and left respectively. Adjust the padding to accommodate long labels, Chart values, label rotations, etc. 

 

  • Checkboxes.

    • Show title. A Chart must be titled when it is created. By checking this box, you can display that title as a header on the Chart.
    • Show controls. Select the Show controls option to make your Chart interactive. On bar charts, you can include buttons for site visitors to choose how data is displayed on the Chart either as Grouped and Stacked. Check this box to show buttons that show data either as a single stack composed of all the Series (Stacked) or the data are grouped together but have discrete bars (Grouped).
    • Show legend. When selected, this shows site visitors the names of the Series included in your Chart. Site visitors can show and hide Series on the Chart when Show Legend is checked.
    • Group by X-Field. With non-numerical discrete data (usually text), you may have repeated x-values on your x-axis. Check this box to add the outputs together and display as a single x-value on your Chart.
    • Show Tooltips. Check this box so that site visitors can mouse over the individual sections of your Chart and see exact values. If this box is checked, you won’t also need Show Values, which creates a fixed label for each value.
    • Reduce Ticks. In a value range, you may not need display every value (for example, 1-1000). Check this box to group values by increments to reduce the number of x-axis values shown on the x-axis.
    • Stagger Labels. Staggering places labels slightly above and below each other rather than on the same line, so that they don’t overlap. Check this box if your labels don’t appear correctly.
    • Show Values. Show exact values on your Chart with a fixed label. If this box is checked, you won’t also need Show Tooltips (which creates hover text with values).
    • Show Data Points. This option only applies to the line chart type. Check the Show Data Points option to add a dot on the line Chart for every unique data point in the Resource.
    • Donut. This option only applies to the pie chart type. Select the Donut checkbox to change the aesthetic of your pie chart to look like a donut shape. This adds some variety and visual flexibility to the standard pie chart type. 

 

Going back to change Chart selections. To make changes on any of the previous screens, use the Back button rather than the key on your keyboard or back tab in your browser. By moving back without using the Back button, you may lose all your work or encounter other errors. 

Adding a Data Story.

Similar to a blog post, Data Stories provide a narrative that adds the depth of impact. Stories focus on how data changes real lives every day. While the form might look familiar, it's helpful to know how the content will appear on Granicus Open Data. 

 

Key information when adding a Data Story: 

  • Image. Choose a large, high quality image for your Data Story. This image appears in a large format across the top of the Data Story. Because of the size, you'll need a large image (minimum 900x1200 pixels) with high resolution so that it appears as expected. In Data Stories, these images can only be uploaded; there isn't an option to link directly to an image from the Web. First select the image by clicking on the Choose file button and then add the image by clicking the Upload button. 
  • Edit summary. Click the Edit summary link to open another text box. In the Summary text box, you can add unique details about your Data Story. This text appears as teaser text as site visitors browse through the Stories page. If you don't want to write additional summary text, Granicus Open Data will simply pull the first portion of your Data Story in the Body text (about 100 words). Including a summary can be useful in adding more key search terms or using a different tone to intrigue site visitors to learn more.  
  • Body. This is the section where the contents of your Data Story appear. Because Granicus Open Data doesn't automatically save content and publishes directly to the site once you save, we recommend drafting in a separate text editor so that you can write at your own pace and use your own review process before pasting into the Body section of your Data Story. 
  • Text editor options. You'll use the Body text box for the contents of your Data Story. Use the tools in the text editor to format and style the body of your text. With these tools you can add images, links, quotes, and line breaks directly in the text box. 

 

 

Adding Tags and Topics. You can add Tags and Topics to your Data Story so that it's easy to find in a search and as site visitors browse the content on your Granicus Open Data site. Tags are free-form, so they can be newly added in the field and can contain any words. You can think of Tags as keywords either within or related to the content. So if you have a Data Story about chickenpox vaccines in the state of Mississippi you might include a Tag for "chickenpox", "vaccines", "Mississippi" and additionally "public health" and "viruses". By including Tags on your Data Story, the Data Story associated with those terms will appear when the terms are included in a search. 

Topics are similar but distinct from Tags. Topics are preset and they act more as a category that content is collected under on your Granicus Open Data site. Topics aren't limited to a common data publisher or common metadata; they represent a conceptual relationship between pieces of content. As a Site Manager, you can preset which Topics may be assigned to content. 

 

Choosing a layout. Layouts are like templates for the design of a page. In most cases, you would need to have technical experience with code to change the way that content appears on a page and what content is allowed. With Granicus Open Data layouts you can choose from a set of layouts pre-made to beautifully combine different content in the same place without needing to touch any code. Choose the layout for your Data Story and add data, media, text, etc. in the different panels. By default the most basic layout (Boxton) is selected, but choose the layout best fits the types of content you want to include for your Data Story. 

Layouts are composed of different regions. Each rectangle and square shown in the different layouts is a region, and each region can contain one or more (or zero) pieces of content. Choosing the right layout is often a matter of trial and error depending on how the content is oriented and how you want it arranged. The regions in a layout are suited better for some content than others; as you add your content you can easily change the layout to meet your needs without losing any of the content. 

 

Adding a Dashboard.

Granicus Open Data Dashboards provide the ultimate flexibility in bringing content together. Layouts are like templates for the design of a page. In most cases, you would need to have technical experience with code to change the way that content appears on a page and what content is allowed. With Granicus Open Data layouts you can choose from a set of layouts pre-made to beautifully combine different content in the same place without needing to touch any code.

 

 

Layouts are composed of different regions. Each rectangle and square shown in the different layouts is a region, and each region can contain one or more (or zero) pieces of content. Choosing the right layout is often a matter of trial and error depending on how the content is oriented and how you want it arranged. The regions in a layout are suited better for some content than others; as you add your content you can easily change the layout to meet your needs without losing any of the content. 

Using the In-place Editor. Once you've selected the layout and save, you can begin adding content to the regions in the layout using the In-place Editor. The In-place Editor is a drag-and-drop tool that lets you visually place content within your selected layout and see a real-time preview of what it will look like once saved. 

 

  

 

  • Add ( + ) button. The button to add content is represented on the In-place Editor by a icon. Click on the  + button to add a new piece of content to the region. You can add as many pieces of content to a region as you want. The content will fit to the region of the layout regardless of how many pieces of content are added. 
  • Style button. The button to add styling to a region is represented by the paintbrush icon in the top-right corner of the region. Use this button to change the style of the region as a whole. That might affect the appearance (like adding rounded corners to the region) or the user experience (like making a region and its content collapsed or exposed). 
  • Edit button. You might think the Edit button is how you edit the content contained on your Dashboard. This button actually lets you edit the administrative details of the Dashboard. That includes information like the Title of the Dashboard, assigned Topics, authoring information, published status, etc. 

 

 

Panelizer button. With Panelizer, you can change the layout even after adding content to your Dashboard or reset if you want to start fresh (remove all content). You can also use the content menu to see another view of the content on your Dashboard. This is useful for rearranging content after changing layouts or shifting several pieces of content on a Dashboard. Click on the content link to open another set of options. 

 

 

Title type. The Title type refers to how the title is set. Leave the selection at Manually set for your Dashboard to keep the original title. You won't change the title of your Dashboard here; this title is added and changed in the Edit menu with other administrative information. 

Substitutions. You won't need to manage Substitutions, so you can leave this option hidden. 

 

 

Gear button. On the Panelizer screen, you can use the gear icon on the region sections to add and manage content for the whole region as well as change the appearance settings. You can also edit each piece of content within a region using the individual gear icons in the content boxes. 

 

Adding a Group.

Groups are both a way to collect common Datasets and enable an additional workflow on Granicus Open Data. On the outward-facing side, site visitors are able to browse and search Datasets specifically published by a Group, which is the common publisher of a number of Datasets. 

Behind the scenes, Groups add an additional set of roles and permissions that ensure quality and security when publishing your data. Group roles and permissions ensure that Content Creators can add new data but only to their assigned Group. This is especially important for large sites that may have several working groups publishing data to the site. Read more about Group roles and permissions. 

 

 

When first adding a new Group, the form has only a few fields. This is the basic information about the Group itself that should tell site visitors what to expect from the Datasets in the Group. 

 

Key information when adding a Group: 

  • Title. Name your Group to reflect the agency or whoever the common data publisher is for the datasets that will belong to the Group. 
  • Image. The image here acts like the logo for your Group. It appears on the overview Groups page as well as the individual page of the Group itself. It's best to choose a square image to fit the dimensions of the thumbnail. Whether you choose an image, a logo, or an icon you can use any image that meets the size and file type requirements. As a Site Manager, you may want to add generic icons to the Groups you add if a current logo is unavailable. 
  • Body text. This text is the full description for your Group similar to an "About" page. The description includes details about the agency, its goals, and information about the data it publishes. While you want to include all the relevant information of the Group, the best descriptions are 1-2 paragraphs long and include a link to the agency's main web page for more details. 
  • Summary text. You can use the Summary to create unique text for your Group. This text appears as a snippet under the Group image on the Group overview page. If left blank the first portion of the body text will be used (about 100 words). Including a summary can be useful in adding more key search terms or using a different tone to intrigue site visitors to learn more. 

 

 

Adding Datasets to a Group. Once you've added a new Group, you can assign Datasets (and their Resources) to that Group. Adding a Dataset to a Group is part of the content creation process when adding a new Dataset. The final step in creating any piece of content is using the submenu at the bottom of the form to add the final administrative data to the content. In the case of Datasets that includes adding Datasets to Groups. 

When adding a Dataset to a Group, users can add a Dataset to as many Groups as there are on the site. Your groups are Groups that the user authoring the content belongs to, and Other groups are all the Groups of which a user is not a member. All users must belong to at least one Group to have the Groups menu item available to them. 

When a Dataset is added to a Group, it will be included on the Group's home page and may be edited by the Administrator members of a Group. As a best practice, users should only add Datasets to Groups that they are a member. Certain users won't be able to access their own content if they assign it to a Group that they do not belong to. 

 

 

Adding members to a Group. Groups have members, who must be first approved, and members have different roles in the Group. A user's membership status affects how they can interact with the Group. As a Site Manager, you can add members to a Group and give members different roles.

 

 

I added my content, where did it go?

You added new content, filled out the fields, included all the details, and then hit the Save button. Now what?

Regardless of the type, once you click on the Save button you'll next see a preview of how your content looks. Keep in mind that once content is saved (and if it has a published status) it is live on your Granicus Open Data site. That means the content is visible to the public. Most users can only save their content and have it directly published. Only Site Managers can add content in an unpublished state. The Preview screen shows you how the content will look to site visitors, so that you can make any final quick edits before moving on.  

In the image below, you can see that the content is on the View screen and the content has just been created. This is how the Data Story will appear to a general site visitor (without the ability to edit, of course). At this point, you can get a sense of the appearance and use the In-place Editor to make any final changes. 

 

 

Manage existing content. Once content is saved it is published and can be managed as existing content. Learn more about what happens after adding new content in the Managing existing content section. 

 

Next up: Managing existing content

 

 

Site Manager Playbook

 

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