Introducing A New API For Metadata (13 October 2017)

Metadata Read/Write API

Every Socrata asset is composed of two main parts: data (rows, columns, shapes, lines, files, etc) and metadata (information about the data, including the description, tags, categories, and more). While sometimes underappreciated by data publishers, high-quality metadata yields substantial benefits for data users: it can boost data discovery, facilitate interoperability, and increase data reuse.

Now, with the public release of a Read/Write Metadata API, Socrata customers have a programmatic way of retrieving and updating metadata on their Socrata assets. Specifically, this API allows users to READ and UPDATE asset-level metadata, individually or at scale. Public, private, default, and custom metadata are all supported.

Check out the full release notes for examples of how to use this API, and explore the documentation to see how it works.


Error Bars and Reference Lines

Sometimes additional context is critical to help individuals understand the data in a visualization. For example, it might be important to know what the possible variation in values is, or how the actual values compare to what the expected target was. To help you add more information to your visualizations, in the new visualization tech preview you can now add error bars and reference lines to your charts.


Error bars can be added from fields in your data to any column or bar chart, and reference lines can be easily added through the chart configurations to any bar, column, line, or histogram chart.

Read this Knowledge Base article for more details on how the new visualization experience works.


Product Update Notifications

The “bell” notification in the navigation menu helps you stay up to date on the latest Socrata product updates, as well as any big changes coming soon. Previously, clicking on the bell opened a flyout with the most recent updates, which would automatically mark the updates as “read” and remove the orange dot icon. However, we are all busy individuals, and you may not have the time to read about the latest update when you first see the notification.


Now, by clicking on the bell you will see a new notifications panel open on the right side of your screen. From here you can track the most recent product updates, and chose when to mark them as read even if you decide not to read the full article.

Product updates aren’t the only types of notifications that can help you use your Socrata site, however. You might want to know when users are added to the site, when datasets are made public, or when changes are made to datasets you own. This new notification panel will become the hub for notifications of various activities across the Socrata site you use, so keep an eye out for more updates in this space soon!


Small Updates & Bug Fixes

  • New Visualization Tech Preview:
    • When filtering on a chart with multiple measures, filters now correctly apply to all measures rather than just the first one.
    • Point maps now use the column names instead of the API field names in the flyouts.
    • Sometimes the wrong values were removed when limiting the number of results displayed on a chart with both grouping and sorting. This is now fixed.
    • Date & Time fields can now be used with column and bar charts, and you can configure the same time-based groupings, such as day, month, year, as are available in timeline charts.
    • For 100% stacked column charts, if you hover over the x-axis label, the flyout now correctly appears with values for the whole column.
    • If you have a column with the data type True/False, you can now add that column as a filter option for the visualization.
    • 100% stacked bar and column charts can now display negative values.
    • Measures with a value of 0 will still appear in a column or bar charts but with no height to the column or bar, rather than providing the error that there is no data to display.
    • You can now edit the title of a visualization page by directly clicking on the title, in addition being able to edit the title through the left-hand menu.
    • If you have set your data to use the period or full-stop for the thousands separator, instead of commas, that formatting is now reflected in the table below the visualization.
  • New asset management experience:
    • There is a new tab for “Shared to Me” to view all assets that have been shared with you as a Viewer, Collaborator, or Co-Owner.
    • The “Asset Inventory” is now called “Assets” on the Administration page, and when you click to view Assets, you will see the “All Assets” open by default.
    • The filter panel on the right side now contains any custom filters (from your custom metadata) that you also have displayed on your public facing catalog.
    • If you have edit rights for Perspectives stories and click on a story in the new asset management table, you will now be taken directly into edit mode.
  • If a user logs into a Socrata site with SSO, their display name set on their Socrata profile is now preserved, rather than being overwritten by the display name from the identity provider.
  • For number data in the preview table on Primer, the thousands separator (most commonly commas) will or will not be displayed depending on whether or not it is set to be displayed in the column settings of that column.
  • If you are logged into your Socrata site and see the grey navigation menu at the top of the page, you will now see the search bar option in that menu rather than in the public-facing site header.
  • Occasionally the link to view a point in Google maps was not appearing in the map flyouts. This is now fixed.
  • If you are submitting an entry through a form with a date and time data type, you can once again submit a field with just the date and no time.
  • If you select “Terms of Use” as the licensing option, that text is now translated to your site’s language if it is not English.


Check out our other Product News, and give us a shout at with questions or ideas.

Was this article helpful?
0 out of 0 found this helpful
Have more questions? Submit a request



Article is closed for comments.