Tinderbox Forum

Timeline events displaying text beyond title

Hi, I’m trying to get my head around timelines, and see lots of potential there.

I would like, however, to be able to include more information in the timeline from an event that just the Note title, for example subtitle, or the first sentence of the text of the note. I don’t see any way of doing that (and can’t find any previous mention of this on the forum or in the FAQ or elsewhere), meaning the only way to do it would be to have very long titles, which I’d prefer not to do. Am I missing something? Many thanks for any help.


No. The behaviour described is as (currently) designed - but you could make a feature request.

There is a workaround, used by some before the Timeline view was added. In that method you use a map and use the map’s X axis as time and figure the necessary maths to put items at the right X location. You won’t have the timeline-specific affordances of the timeline view but using rectangular shapes (the map default) you can have title/subtitle/$Text all displayed if you so choose.

My experience, FWIW, has taught me to try to cram less text onscreen and use short, meaningful, titles. Shorter titles allows for smaller (but readable) map icons and the selected note displays in the text pane. Also, by judicious use of (user) attributes to hold key strands of metadata, and prototypes, it is possible to use those attributes as a display or hover expression.

Note the $DisplayExpression does not have to include $Name or be a bit of code. It can just be an attribute reference, e.g. $MyString. A DE like that means the contents of $MyString use drawn as the note on-screen title although $Name itself is unaltered.

What I’m getting at is that it seems tempting to put more info on screen, to make life ‘easy’, but it also creates a noisy display. Leveraging prototypes and attributes can help counter screen bloat. As Tinderbox is very supporting of incremental formalisation, there’s little ‘cost’ to experimenting with such techniques.

In addition to $DisplayExpression, Timeline View supports $HoverExpression for notes as well as $Badge

$HoverExpression for this image is:

"Start: " + $StartDate.format("") + "\n" + "Places: " + $NLPlaces


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Thanks @mwra and @PaulWalters, very helpful. It’s a good point that you don’t want to have too much text in a timeline, tempting though it might be. I’ll play around with the attributes as you suggest. Thanks again.