Contents - Style

The Style panel of the Contents pane controls formatting, including choices of colors and symbology.   The style panel allows us to display characteristics of objects in a fixed way or to specify how the values of in a field can dynamically control display characteristics, a process known as thematic formatting in GIS.

Style for Drawings

The Style panel for drawings specifies the display characteristics of areas, lines and points for whatever is the active drawing.   Many GIS products are limited to allowing only a single type of object in a drawing, such as only areas or only lines or only points, but Manifold drawings can have a mix of areas, lines and points in the same drawing so the Manifold Style panel provides controls to specify the formatting of all three types of objects in the same drawing at once.

 

dlg_contents_style_panel2.png

Areas, lines and points each have a Color, Fill Color, Style and Size property.   [Current Manifold Future builds have not yet added the Size button for areas.]  Points have a Rotation property as well.   The specified property applies to all objects of that type in that drawing layer.    For example, in the illustration above all areas in the layer will have the default gray Fill Color and all points will have the default Size of five points.

 

 

 

Style Panel Tabs

The Style panel has two tabs for drawings:

 

 

Controls

Color

The primary color applied in point and line styles that use a single color.  Also applied to the borders of areas, to the borders of point styles that use two colors, as the hatch line color in area styles, and as the primary color in line styles that use two colors.

Fill Color

The fill or secondary color.  Applied to the interior of area and point styles that use two colors.  Also applied as the secondary color in area styles and line styles that use two colors.

Style

Choose symbology for areas, lines or points.   Styles using one color use the Color specified.  Styles which use two colors will use both the Color and the Fill color.  Area styles also allow choosing a character or symbol from any font that has been installed on the computer.

Size

The thickness of lines or the size of point objects in printer's points, a unit of font size.  the border line for the area.  May be fractions such as a size of 1.5 or 2.8.  This property is not currently operational for area objects, but will be added to enable specification of the density of hatch patterns and other area style symbology.

Rotation

The rotation of the selected point style in degrees.

 

eg_contents_style01_05.png eg_contents_style01_06.png

 

In the illustrations above we have changed the Size of points to 20 and the Fill Color to blue.

Style Buttons

Buttons have two sides to them, with a faint vertical dividing line in between.  The left side of the button shows a sample of a style property, such as a color, a style symbol, or a size or rotation number.   The right side of the button shows a field icon if the style property is controlled by a field.

dlg_contents_style_button01.png

dlg_contents_style_button06.png

A button for a style property that is not controlled by a field will have no field icon. A button for colors will just show the color that applies.  If we change the color the button will show the new color and the new color will immediately be applied in the drawing.

dlg_contents_style_button04.png

dlg_contents_style_button05.png

If we have specified that a field should control the style property, a small field icon will appear.  When the button is not being used the field icon will be fainter to avoid cluttering up the display, but clear enough so we know that particular style property is controlled by a field.   When the button is in use the button border will get darker and the field icon brighter to indicate the button is being used.

Shortcut: Click on Either Side of a Button

Both sides of the button work OK.  Experienced users can save some mouse moves by clicking on the left or the right side of the button depending on whether they want to use a field or not.  The two zones are a convenience for experienced users, allowing them to slightly reduce the number of mouse motions.   This is especially convenient if we want to change a style property from being controlled by a field to a fixed color or number, or from using a fixed color or number to being controlled by a field, but it is not a big deal or something to worry about for beginners, as we can get to where we want no matter which side we click.

dlg_contents_style_button03.png

To specify a field that will control the style property, click onto the right side of the button.  That will allow us to specify the controlling field and choose other parameters such as the number and type of intervals and so on.

dlg_contents_style_button02.png

To specify the color or other style property directly without using a field, click onto the left side of the button.   That will call up a menu that immediately allows specifying the desired color or number.   

 

Have we mentioned that both sides of the button work OK?  No need to panic if we wanted to specify a field to control the style property but we clicked the left side of the button.  In that case we simply click outside the resulting menu and proceed to specify the field as desired.  Likewise, if we clicked the right side when we just wanted to specify the color, no big deal.  We ignore the field setting and we click the big color well to specify the color desired.

Thematic Formatting

Thematic formatting is a GIS term that means "changing the format based upon the value of a field."  A classic example is making city points bigger or smaller based upon the population of the city as shown in the Example: Format the Size of City Points by Population  topic.    

dlg_contents_style_panel3.png

 

Whenever we click a style property button we can choose a field that will control that style property.   The pull-down menu will be loaded with all of the fields in that drawing's table that can be used to control formatting.   If no field is chosen, then whatever the button shows will be applied to all objects of that type in the drawing layer.   If we choose a field, the panel will be populated with additional controls that allow us to choose how that field should control that style property.   To apply a thematic format once we are happy with all settings we must click the Update Style button.

 

We can Ctrl-click more than one style property to have the same thematic formatting intervals apply to more than one property at once.   For example, in the illustration below we have ctrl-clicked on the Color, Style and Size buttons for points to control all three style properties simultaneously using the same field and interval settings.

 

dlg_contents_style_panel.png

Controls for Thematic Formatting

The following controls appear when a field is chosen to control a given Style property.

 

<Click a button>

Click on a button to open the Field choice or to display an already-defined thematic format.

<Ctrl-click a button>

Ctrl-click on a button to add it to the thematic format being constructed.  An additional column will appear for that style property in the intervals list.

<Click a sample well>

Click on a button's sample well, that is, on the left side of the button, and apply a color or number to clear any thematic format in use for that style property and instead to apply a fixed color or number.

Field

The field that is the source of the values to be used in the thematic format. Choose a field from the pull down menu to open the other controls for thematic formatting.

Method

The method used to classify records into different intervals based upon the value in the Field for each record.

Range

The range over which intervals will be computed. An arbitrary range may be specified to allow choice of methods such as equal intervals in anticipation of records to be added that fall outside the range of values within existing records.

Breaks

The number of intervals to compute.

Tally

Compute the number of intervals and values to use for the bounds based on the Method and the number of Breaks.

(intervals list)

A list of intervals, with the color or other Style property value to use for each.   These may manually be edited, deleted or added to.

Fill

How values found in the records should be assigned, that is, filled into, the intervals in which they occur.  See the examples for Fill rules below.

btn_style_palette.png

Choose a palette to apply to color wells in the intervals.  Enabled only if a color style property is part of the thematic format.

Update Style

Apply any changes to the drawing.

 

il_contents_style01_01.pngil_contents_style01_02.png

 

In the illustration above, all style properties are default settings except for Color, Style, and Size for point objects.   We have ctrl-clicked those three buttons so that all three style attributes are controlled by the same thematic formatting arrangement.   We use the numbers in the mfd_id field (a goofy choice that is meaningless except as a source of a different number for each object) in 5 breaks, that is five intervals,  using a method that provides equal intervals.   Within each interval the value will be interpolated for each mfd_id value that falls within the interval.

 

btn_style_palette.png  We have clicked the palette button to apply a colorful palette (CB Spectral) to the Color property wells.   We have double-clicked into each of the Style property wells and have selected a different symbol from the font in use, a free symbolic font we have downloaded from the web and installed on our computer.  The symbol font uses just one color, so we do not utilize the Fill Color style property in the thematic format, and instead use only the Color property.  Finally, we chose a range of Size values.  The result is that the various objects are displayed in different colors and sizes and five different symbols.   

 

There are six objects, which have mfd_id values from 1 to 6 but there are only five intervals, so two of the objects fall into the last interval which covers objects with mfd_id values of 4 and 5.  Both have the same symbol, a crescent moon behind a cloud.  The object with an mfd_id value of 4 has been colored using the green color defined for that bound, but the object with an mfd_id value of 5 has been colored using an interpolated color between the green and blue colors shown in the color wells for the bounds of the interval within which it falls.

 

For a detailed example, see the Example: Style Panel Quickstart topic, which provides a step-by-step, tutorial introduction to using the Style panel to apply color, symbology, size and rotation to areas, lines and points in drawings.

 

Editing, Deleting and Adding Bounds and Intervals

We may edit the bounds which define intervals as follows:

 

 

For a step by step example of the above see the Example: Add, Delete and Edit Thematic Formatting Intervals topic.

Grouping Methods for Intervals

When varying formatting it can be confusing to use too many different formats in the same drawing.   For example, if we have 1000 cities each with a different population then attempting to use 1000 different values of Size for the city points would result in too little visual difference in most cases to provide the visual distinction desired.  We therefore normally group cities into five or six groupings based upon the controlling population field and then assign a Size to each such interval.   That will result in the use of only five or six different sizes of points in the drawing so it will be immediately clear which cities are larger and which are smaller.

 

equal intervals

Calculate bounds so each interval spans approximately the same part of the total range of values that occur in the field.   

 

For example, given a Range of 0 to 100 with Breaks equal to 6 the five intervals thus created would be 0 to 20, to 40, to 60 to 80 and finally to 100. Each range would interval would be about the same size, a difference of 20 in range.

equal count

Calculate bounds so each interval contains about the same number of records.  

 

For example, if many values of the given field were evenly scattered between 0 and 25 but only one record had a value of 100, creating five intervals with equal count could create intervals from 0 to 5, to 10, to 15 , to 20 and then a final interval to 100.    The final interval would be a range of 80 values but it would still contain a count of records equal to the other four intervals which each covered a range of only five values.

exponential intervals

Assign interval values so that each interval contains an exponentially increasing number of values.

standard intervals

Assign values of bounds so that each interval represents one standard deviation.

unique values

Given the number of breaks, find the most frequently occuring unique values within that number.   For example, if we have 5 breaks the five most frequently occurring values will appear as intervals.

 

The method we use to classify records into different intervals depends upon the contents of the data and upon our tastes and intent as to how we want to use the formatting characteristic used in the thematic formatting.    

 

Tech Tip: If we want to assign an individual value for a Style property such as Color to each record we can choose equal intervals as the Method with two breaks and then use interpolate as the Fill rule.  A continuous range of colors interpolated between the two colors will be assigned.

Intervals and Fill Rules

Consider a drawing of cities thematically formatted by population where intervals have been computed using the equal count method, with the intervals list as follows.

il_style_fill_intervals.png

Intervals in the list are defined by the lowest value found in the data at the top of the list, the highest value found in the data at the bottom of the list with intervals in between such that each interval's lowest bound is the value given for that interval.   Each interval starts with the lower bound given and then continues up through increasing values of the field in the data until we hit the next defining value, which is the lowest bound for the next interval.    

 

In the illustration above the lowest value found in the data is 20000.   That interval, assigned a light blue color, continues upward from the lowest value until we hit 25100, which is the lower value bound for the next interval, assigned a green color.  That interval continues until we hit 33400, the lower bound for the interval colored yellow.   That interval continues until we reach 50200, the lower bound for the last interval that has been assigned a salmon color.    The last interval starts at that lower bound of 50200 and continues up to the largest value in the data, 2125200.   By default only that largest value will be colored red.  By default, all values less than the very largest, even just one less at 2125199, if such a value existed in the data, would be colored using the salmon color assigned to the last interval that starts at 50200.

 

Fill Rules specify how values found in the data between those values which specify the bounds of intervals such as the numbers 20000, 25100, 33400, 50200 and 2125200 seen above.   Fill rules specify how a value such as 28000, which falls between 25100 and 33400 should be colored.    The default setting is to use closest lower value so it would be colored green.   If we changed that to use closest higher value it would be colored yellow.

Fill Rules

closest lower value

The default.  Assign the format specified for the lower bound of the interval.

closest higher value

Assign the format specified for the upper bound of the interval.

lowest value

Assign the format specified for the very lowest value found in the data set.

highest value

Assign the format specified for the very highest value found in the data set.

interpolate

Assign a format that is interpolated between the formats used for the lower bound and the upper bound of the interval, proportionately interpolating based on the value for the record.

 

Examples of Fill Rules

In each of the following examples of formatting the Fill Color style property for cities points we provide the intervals list using equal count as well as an example table of cities giving the population of each.  The map window shows the resulting format.  The example table of cities provides a partial list of all of the cities used in the layer, showing a sampling of those seen in the map view illustrated.

 

closest lower value

 

 

il_style_fill_sorted_map_cities.png

The default.  Assign the format specified for the lower bound of the interval

.il_style_fill_intervals.png

The city of Tours with a population of 132800 falls into the highest interval, from a population of 50200 to the largest value of 2125200.  The format color is taken from the color assigned to the lower bound of 50200, a salmon color.

il_style_fill_closest_lower_a.png

 

closest higher value

 

 

il_style_fill_sorted_map_cities.png

Assign the format specified for the upper bound of the interval

.il_style_fill_intervals.png

The city of Tours with a population of 132800 falls into the highest interval, from a population of 50200 to the largest value of 2125200.  The format color is taken from the color assigned to the upper bound of 2125200, a red color.

il_style_fill_closest_higher_a.png

 

lowest value

 

 

il_style_fill_sorted_map_cities.png

Assign the format specified for the very lowest value found in the data set.

il_style_fill_intervals.png

The format color for the city of Tours, like all the other cities is taken from the color assigned to the very lowest value of 20000, a blue color.

il_style_fill_lowest_a.png

 

highest value

 

 

il_style_fill_sorted_map_cities.png

Assign the format specified for the very highest value found in the data set.

il_style_fill_intervals.png

The format color for the city of Tours, like all the other cities is taken from the color assigned to the very highest value of 2125200, a red color.  The largest value of population occurs for Paris, not seen in the map view.

il_style_fill_highest_a.png

 

interpolate

 

 

il_style_fill_sorted_map_cities.png

Assign a format that is interpolated between the formats used for the lower bound and the upper bound of the interval, proportionately interpolating based on the value for the record.

il_style_fill_intervals.png

When a population does not match exactly one of the upper or lower bounds for the interval into which it falls, the interpolate rule creates a color ramp that smoothly interpolates from the lower color to the upper color and then assigns an interpolated color on the ramp proportional to the population's location in the range from the lower to higher bound.

il_style_fill_interpolate_a.png

Near Tours, the city of Vierzon with a population of 29700 falls between the green color of the lower bound of 25100 and the yellow color of the upper bound at 33400 so the interpolate rule assigns a yellowish-green color.   Compare that to the pure green color assigned by the default closest lower value rule as seen in the first example above.

il_style_fill_interpolate_size_a.png

Interpolation of other Style properties is done similarly.  For example, if point Size was assigned using interpolate and a population fell halfway between a lower bound using a Size of 10 and a Size of 14 then a Size of 12 would be assigned by interpolate.  The effect is subtle, but if we take a close look at the symbol for Chateauroux just below and to the left of Vierzon, we see that when Size is interpolated it appears slightly larger in size.

 

Style for Labels

When opened with the focus on a Labels window or Labels layer in a map, the Style panel allows us to set the display characteristics, such as color, style, font, and size of labels.  

 

Style settings applied to labels apply to all labels in the labels component.  To vary the formatting for labels, use thematic formatting to vary style properties per label based on the value of a field in that label's record.  Thematic formatting for labels is done exactly the same as thematic formatting for drawings.

 

dlg_contents_style_panel_labels.png

To change the format of labels:

 

  1. Open the labels component or click onto the label component's tab in an open map window.

  2. Open the Style panel in the Contents pane.

  3. Click on the button for the Style property to be changed.

  4. Choose the color desired, or the style, the font, or the size.

  5. The change will automatically be applied to the labels.

 

To change the thematic format of labels:

 

  1. Open the labels component or click onto the label component's tab in an open map window.

  2. Open the Style panel in the Contents pane.

  3. Click on the button for the Style property to be changed.

  4. In the pull-down menu for fields, choose the field to control thematic formatting.

  5. Choose the Method for grouping records.

  6. Choose the number of Breaks, that is the number of intervals for formatting.

  7. Press Tally to generate a list of intervals in the pane below.

  8. For each interval row, double-click into the sample and enter the desired value for that interval, OR...

  9. To apply a palette if thematically formatting colors, press the Palette button and choose a palette.

  10. Press Update Style to apply the thematic format to the labels.

 

Style Properties for Labels

Color

The primary color applied to label text and for the borders of a label box.

Color, fill

The secondary color applied to labels when a Label style uses two colors, for example, as the fill color for a label box or as the drop shadow or aura around the text.

Style

Choose from the default style that uses Color only or from styles which use both Color and Color, fill.

Font

Choose the font.   The initial list provides fonts immediately available and used as standard fonts in most Windows editions.  Choose Custom to pick a font from any font installed in the system using the standard Windows dialog.  The font size setting from the Windows dialog is ignored in favor of using the Style dialog's Label font size setting.

Size

The size of the font.

Label Styles

Following are examples of available label styles using black as the Color, white as the Color, fill, Seguoe UI, Semibold as the Label font and Label font size value of 10.   The displays of Label style value samples have been enlarged better to show the use of Color, fill in light gray color in the sample.

 

il_icon_label_style_01.png

eg_style_labels01_01a.png

The default style provides a single color font with no label effects.

il_icon_label_style_02.png

eg_style_labels01_02a.png

This style provides a drop shadow effect when shown on a lighter background and using a Color, fill that is slightly darker than that light background.  On a dark background it provides a highlighting drop shadow effect.

il_icon_label_style_03.png

eg_style_labels01_03a.png

Similar to the drop shadow effect but using the Color, fill secondary color as a halo. When labels must be seen against either light or dark backgrounds use this style with dark Color and light Color, fill.

il_icon_label_style_04.png

eg_style_labels01_04a.png

Use Color for the text and box borders and Color, fill as the fill color for the box.

il_icon_label_style_05.png

eg_style_labels01_05a.png

Similar to the box style but without the border box.

 

Positioning Labels

Labels are centered upon an anchor point that depends whether the object from which the label is derived is a point, line or area.     To offset labels, use the technique illustrated in the Example: Formatting Tricks topic.

 

The anchor point for labels created for point objects is the location of the point.  When creating labels for line or area objects, the label will be placed somewhere on one of the coordinate locations that defines the line or area.    That usually is not a good location as we normally want the label centered upon the line or area in some way.   To do that we first use the Transform dialog to create centers for the lines or areas and then we can create labels for the points that the centers template creates.

 

Notes

Example - For a detailed example, see the Example: Style Panel Quickstart topic, which provides a step-by-step, tutorial introduction to using the Style panel to apply color, symbology, size and rotation to areas, lines and points in drawings.

 

Selection commands - Many of the same keyboard shortcut selection commands that work in tables work in various Contents panes panels that show rows of items such as the Layers panel or interval rows in the Style panel when doing thematic formatting.

 

Ctrl-A selects all rows.

 

Ctrl-I inverts the selection, deselecting those rows that were selected and selecting those that were not selected.

 

Ctrl-click the row handle for a row to toggle selection for that the row.   Ctrl-click selects an unselected row, and deselects a selected row.

 

To Select None from the keyboard, do a Ctrl-A followed by a Ctrl-I.

 

See Also

Getting Started

 

User Interface Basics

 

Maps

 

Drawings

 

Editing Drawings

 

Images

 

Labels

 

Selection

 

Style

 

Project Pane

 

Assign Initial Coordinate System

 

Repair Initial Coordinate System

 

Change Coordinate System

 

Contents - Layers

 

Contents - Record

 

Layer Opacity

 

Example: Layers Tutorial - We take a tour of the Layers panel in the Contents pane, learning how to manage layer display order, select layers, turn several layers on and off at the same time, alter opacity settings for one or more layers and how to change background color.

 

Example: Style Panel Quickstart - A tutorial introduction to using the Style panel in the Contents pane to apply color, symbology, size and rotation to areas, lines and points in drawings.

 

Example: Format a Drawing using the Style Panel - In this example we provide a first, step by step look at how to format areas in a drawing using the Style panel.  We can specify the same formatting for all areas or use a field to automatically set formatting, a process usually known as thematic formatting.

 

Example: Format the Size of City Points by Population - A common GIS task is to format the size of points in a drawing based on some value.  For example, the size of points that represent cities might be formatted based on the value of the city's population, with cities that have larger populations being marked by larger point icons.  This is an example of thematic formatting and is easy to do using the Style dialog.

 

Example: Edit Coordinates While Creating an Object - When creating an object in a map using a tool such as Create Area, right in the middle of the process we can edit coordinates in the Contents - Record panel's Coordinates tab.   This example shows the step by step process.

 

Example: Edit Attributes and Move a Point - We look at the attributes for a point in a drawing layer and edit one of the attributes using a more expanded Edit dialog.  We then move the point to a new location. Easy!

 

Example: Edit Attributes, Larger Text, IME for Asian Languages - A tour showing how to edit attributes in a drawing using the Record panel Values tab and the expanded Edit dialog, including advanced Unicode facilities and use of the built in Input Method Editor (IME) to input text in Japanese language.

 

Example: Assign Initial Coordinate System - Use the Contents pane to manually assign an initial coordinate system when importing from a format that does not specify the coordinate system.

 

Example: Change Projection of an Image - Use the Change Coordinate System command to change the projection of an image, raster data showing terrain elevations in a region of Florida, from Latitude / Longitude to Orthographic centered on Florida.

 

Videos

Manifold Future - Future Tour Part 1 - This video shows how to download and use a portable installation for Manifold Future.  The video also shows the Contents, pane, layers and layer opacity, one click use of data source favorites, using your own archival favorite and getting record values instantly.  If you are using Viewer or Radian Studio, download and use the Future version to get access to all these powerful new features.

 

Manifold Future - Future Tour Part 2 Editing - The video shows how to create new objects, how to add fields and vertices and move vertices around, how to edit existing objects and how to use simple selection methods to choose vertices to move together, including moving all objects.

 

Manifold Future - Future Tour Part 3 Editing - The editing tour continues with a look at how to create branched objects, including how to create areas with holes and islands, how to add branches to lines and how to add coordinates between vertices in existing objects.  We finish up by creating an area that traces over a pond in the Luxembourg Gardens in Paris using a Google satellite view, and then we add a hole to that area and two additional islands.

 

Manifold Future - Future Tour Part 4 Edit Attributes, Move a Point - We use Manifold Future to see how to view attributes of objects in drawings, including use of the new Edit dialog to view long, multi-paragraph text fields.  We edit fields and see how easy it is to preview edits and either accept them or abandon them. We switch to editing the geometry of objects in a drawing, viewing the coordinate locations and using mouse moves to reposition points. We edit the location of a point to correct an error in a drawing, using Google Satellite view to provide context for the correction.  Fast and easy, with previews all the way!

 

Manifold Future - Future Tour Part 5 Unicode Attributes and IME -  We take a tour through Manifold Future attribute editing, showing how to edit attributes in a drawing using the Record panel Values

tab and the expanded Edit dialog, including advanced Unicode facilities and use of the built in Input Method Editor (IME) to input text in Japanese language.

 

Manifold Future - Future Tour Part 6 Cell Context Menu - A short video showing a fast and easy way to copy between cells in tables using the context menu.  Also... one step undo of pending changes,  setting the value of a cell to NULL and more. The context menu on cells is such a simple thing but it makes repetitive editing of tables much faster and easier.

 

Manifold Future - 5 Minute Style Quickstart - A five minute, fast and easy introduction to the new Style and formatting capabilities in Manifold Future. In just five minutes learn how to rapidly change colors, symbology, sizes and rotations for area, line and point objects in drawings.

 

Manifold Future - Example: Style Panel Quickstart - A video that repeats the Example: Style Panel Quickstart topic.  The video shows how to format points using the Style panel, including simultaneous formatting of multiple style properties using the same thematic format setup. See how to use free meteorology symbols from a popular, free font, how to use letters and other symbols as point symbology and more.

 

Manifold Future - Example: City Sizes by Population - A video that repeats the Example: Format the Size of City Points by Population topic. The video shows how to vary the sizes and colors of points in a map by the populations of cities those points represent, a classic example of thematic formatting. See also what the percentage numbers in the intervals list mean and how interval methods are automatically calculated by Manifold based on the data in the drawing.