How to use Pattrn¶
The Pattrn app is an interactive data dashboard enabling its users to explore, visualise, and query the dataset of events linked to the app (see the section of this manual on Preparing your data for Pattrn).
Its interface allows users to move across scales of analysis: it gives access to the granular details of each singular event, and helps revealing patterns across diffuse data.
This section of the Pattrn manual provides an overview of the key analytical functions of the Pattrn app.
The event map¶
The central component of the Pattrn interface is the map area. You can zoom in and out by using the + / - buttons, and change the base layer to display a choice of base map layers.
On the map, the black circles containing numbers are clusters of events. The number corresponds to the number of events registered in that location. Clicking on these black circles zooms into the cluster and decomposes it into smaller clusters or individual events (coloured dots with no numbers on them).
Each individual event can be clicked in order to access all the details about it.
When several events have the exact same coordinates, a spiral of coloured circles will appear around the center point, allowing users to select each event separately.
When clicking on an individual event’s marker on the map, the Event details panel slides in from the right, revealing all the event’s data, split into tabs.
The first tab is the Summary tab: it displays the available textual report for the selected event.
At the bottom, a summary table lists the key data about the event.
The other tabs – Photos , Videos , Links – provide access to all other available media and content pertaining to this event. If no photos, videos or links are available for this event, their corresponding tabs will not be displayed.
By clicking on the X icon at the top left of the Event details panel, or anywhere on the map, the panel is folded back out of view, allowing users to focus on the map and on the charts below it.
Charts and filters area¶
General information about the interactive charts¶
In the lower part of the Pattrn interface, you will find a series of advanced charting and filtering tools.
When loading the Pattrn app in the browser, the list of available charts is presented in the left-side panel, which is expanded by default, pushing the map to the right. By clicking anywhere on the map or charts, the Chart menu slides back off the screen. To make the Chart menu slide back in again at any time, click on the + sign to the top left of the map area.
By selecting a chart from the Chart Menu , users can plot data over time , visualise it by type (tag) or by Yes/No questions.
All the charts are interactive : they enable users not only to visualise data, but also to filter it according to certain criteria. By combining filters , users can quickly navigate a large dataset, reveal patterns across the data , and make sense of complex situations.
The map itself works as a filtering device. Only the events contained in the frame of the map are visualised and accounted for in the Charts and Filters area. This means that, if users want to focus on the events that took place in a particular area, they can zoom and center the map around that area: only the data pertaining to events in that area will be charted in the Charts and Filter area.
At the bottom of the map, users can read the number of events contained in the specific frame of the map, out of the full number of events in the dataset.
Charting and filtering over time¶
Selecting a chart over time displays a Time Chart, whose timespan corresponds to that between the oldest and the most recent event in the dataset of the Pattrn instance.
Different Time Charts are available. By default, all instances will feature a chart of the number of events over time. In addition, for each column of numeric data entered in the dataset, a time chart will be automatically generated by the Pattrn app, plotting that specific variable over time.
By clicking and dragging a window across a Time Chart, users can select a specific period of time as a filter. When users click and drag a window of time in a Time Chart, all the events that did not take place during that specific window of time will be filtered out of the map. This feature enables users to focus on any specific period of time.
Charting and filtering by type¶
Selecting a chart by type displays a Bar Chart: each bar corresponds to a given tag, and its height corresponds to the number of events that have been assigned this tag.
For each column of tag data entered in the dataset, a Bar Chart will be automatically generated by the Pattrn app, charting the distribution of tags in that column across all events visible in the active map frame.
By clicking on a bar in a Bar Chart, users can select a specific tag as a filter. When a bar is clicked, all the events that have not been assigned the corresponding tag will be filtered out of the map. This feature enables users to focus on specific characteristics of the events in the dataset.
Charting and filtering by Yes/No questions¶
Similar to filtering by type, selecting a chart by Yes/No questions displays a Yes/No Bar Chart: each bar corresponds to one of the three possible answers (Yes, No, Unknown) to the selected question, and its height corresponds to the number of events that match this answer.
For each column of Yes/No data entered in the dataset, a Yes/No Bar Chart will be automatically generated by the Pattrn app, charting the distribution of values in that column across all events visible in the active map frame.
By clicking on a bar in a Yes/No Bar Chart, users can select a specific answer as a filter. When a bar is clicked, all the events that don’t match that answer will be filtered out of the map. This feature enables users to quickly isolate events in the dataset that fall into a given category.
When a filter is on, the Funnel icon located top right of the Charts and Filters area turns black. Users can thereby quickly check whether they are looking at the whole dataset, or at a filtered fraction of it.
To reset all filters and reload the page, click on the Reload icon located top right of the Charts and Filters area.
The search field enables users to undertake dynamic keyword searches across the entire dataset. As soon as a few characters are typed in the search field, all events that do not contain this specific string of characters anywhere in their row of data are filtered out of the map.
Submitting New Data and Edits¶
The Pattrn app enables Observers not only to explore the data available on the Platform, but also to contribute new data for review by Editors of the app, when this is set up to use Google Sheets as data source with the Pattrn Editor enabled.
To do so, Observers can click on the Edit/Add Event link top right of the Event Details column. They can then chose between Add a new Event or, if an event was pre-selected, Edit this Event.
Clicking on Add a new Event opens up an interface similar to that of the Pattrn Editor, through which Observers can enter data about the event they intend to report.
Once the data is entered–which can include photos, embedded videos, or links–Observers can submit the new event.
Edit this Event opens up a similar interface, by which the Observer can edit the data already available about an event–both adding data and correcting the information currently displayed on the Platform–and submit the edits.
In both cases, by default, the submission process is anonymous , but Observers can choose to leave their contact, should they accept to be contacted by Editors who would wish to contact the source of the data contributed.
Warning: for details about this feature, see Privacy, security, anonymity.