Setup and Administration

If you haven’t yet requested setup of a community catalog for your group, fill out this form and we’ll contact you for details we’ll need from you to get started. By default each community gets one administrative user, but you can always request more. If you have a big, dynamic community with many data publishers and you want the ability to grant accounts on your own, contact us and we’ll talk.

Importing a Tabular Dataset

It’s very easy to import CSV or XLS data files into the Socrata platform. Once you’re logged into the site, click on the “Hello, ” link in the navigation header to go to your user profile. Then follow the below steps:

  1. Click on the “Create a new dataset” button above your data catalog to launch the import wizard.
  2. Click on “Import a Data File”, then select whether you want to import a data file from your computer, or from a link on the web
    • If you’re importing from the web, paste in a URL that points to the data file you want to import
    • If you’re importing from your computer, click “Upload a file” and select your file
  3. The file will be loaded into our system and analyzed in order to determine the best structure for the dataset once it is imported. You’ll then be presented with the column schema editor, where you can pick the data types of data you are importing, provide human-readable column names, and make other changes.
  4. Once you’ve made the necessary tweaks to your column schema, click the “Next” button to import your dataset and continue to the metadata screen. Here you should fill in the name, description, and other metadata about your dataset. Make sure that you also select your group name from the “Group” column under “Community Data Platform” to make sure your dataset shows up under the proper group. Also make sure you click “Public” under the privacy options. When you’re done, click “Next” to be shown a preview of your dataset.
  5. Now you’ll be taken to the unpublished version of your dataset. Review it to make sure that you’re happy with the way your data was imported, and then click the “Publish Dataset” button to add your dataset to your data catalog. Note that it can take up to 15 minutes for your dataset to appear in your data catalog while it is being added to our search indexes.

Keeping Your Data Up-to-Date

Once your data is loaded, you’ll want to make sure you keep it up to date. Fortunately we have great web tools to help make that easy.

To update a dataset:

  1. Log into your account, and open up the dataset you want to update.
  2. In the “Edit” sidebar, click the “Edit Dataset” button. This will create a new Working Copy of the dataset that you can edit. This may take a few minutes for large datasets, and you can always come back later and click the button again to be taken there directly after it’s completed.
  3. After your Working Copy is loaded, you can either click into cells to make modifications, like you would for a spreadsheet, or use our bulk tools. To update a dataset in bulk, click on the “Edit” sidebar and then open the “Append and Replace” sub-pane. Click on the “Launch the Append and Replace Wizard” to start the process.
  4. You’ll then be walked through updating your dataset:
  5. Choose “Append” if you just want to add more data to an existing dataset
  6. Choose “Replace” if you want to completely replace the data in a dataset
  7. You’ll then be given an opportunity to upload a new data file. We’ll scan it, just like we did on import, and attempt to match up its columns with the ones in the dataset. You’ll be presented with a column matching dialog very similar to the one you saw at import time. Make sure your columns in the dataset match up with those in your data file, and continue your update.
  8. After your update is done, review your data to make sure you’re happy with it, and click the “Publish” button to release your changes to the world.

Getting Help

If you need help with anything, just click the “Support” tab on the right. From there, you can review our knowledge base, or submit a trouble ticket to get help.

On your event day, if you’re looking for additional help, contact us and we can talk about ways you can have on-site or virtual technical support for developers during your event.