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Gramps 4.0 Wiki Manual - Gramplets

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This page details the functionality of the Gramplets. If you would like to read more technical details about writing your own Gramplet, please see Gramplets. For more Gramplets that you can extend your Gramps functionality with, see Third-party Plugins.


What is a Gramplet

Fig. 10.1 Dashboard Category (Default View)

A Gramps Gramplet is a view of data that either changes dynamically during the running of Gramps, or provides interactivity to your genealogical data. Gramplets are the widgets that are part of Gramps and can be seen in the Dashboard Category, Sidebars and Bottombars in other Navigator Categories, they provide all kinds of functionality that can be useful for the researcher.

What is the difference between gramplets, reports, quick views, and tools?

  • Reports provide a static output format of your data, typically for presentation
  • Quick View provides a typically short, interactive listing derived from your data
  • Tools provide a method of processing your data
  • Gramplets provide a dynamic view and interface to your data

General Usage and Configuration

Fig. 10.2 Detached Gramplets View

You can drag the Properties button (top left) of each Gramplet to move it around the Dashboard View area. You can click the Properties button to detach the Gramplet from Dashboard View and place it in its own window. The window will stay open regardless of page (relationship, ancestry, etc). Closing the detached view will put it back onto the Dashboard view. If you quit Gramps with a open gramplet, when you start gramps again, it will open automatically.

When one or more Gramplets are undocked from the Dashboard View, you can change to a different view (such as the People or Charts Views). In this way, you can use these gramplets to supplement a particular view with additional details and functionality provided by the gramplet.

You can add new gramplets by right clicking on an open space on Dashboard view.

You can also change the number of columns by changing a setting in configure the active view to open the Configure Gramplets window, to change the Dashboard Layouts > Number of Columns.

If a link in a Gramplet is to a specific person, then clicking the link will change the Active Person. Double-clicking such any link to a specific Gramps item (such as person or family) will bring up the Editor for that item. To edit a linked person without changing the Active Person, right-click on the person link. Depending on the type of entry, double-clicking any row in a Quick View table will either select more specific data (drill down) or bring up the editor.

Double-clicking the title of a gramplet docked in the Dashboard Category allows you to change the display title.

Want Additional Gramplets

To get more Gramplets use the Plugin Manager to get additional Addons for you. Check the list of the available reports here.

Summary of gramplets

Fig. 10.3 Default gramplets available from the Gramps Sidebar and Bottombar on the Relationships Category and Charts Category
Fig. 10.4 Default gramplets available on Dashboard Category

These are 26 default gramplets:

  1. Age Stats Gramplet - view age span graphs
  2. Age on Date Gramplet - see the people alive and their ages on a particular date
  3. Attributes Gramplets - see active person's attributes
  4. Birthdays Gramplet
  5. Calendar Gramplet - see people's events on a particular date, or in a month in the past
  6. Census Gramplet
  7. Clipboard Gramplet
  8. Deep Connections Gramplet - relationships
  9. Descendant Count Gramplet
  10. Descendants Gramplet - see the active person's descendants
  11. Fan Chart Gramplet - see the active person's pedigree, in a circular fan chart
  12. Given Name Cloud Gramplet - most popular given names as a "text cloud"
  13. Import Gramplet
  14. Latest Changes Gramplet
  15. Pedigree Gramplet - see a complete pedigree in compressed tex
  16. Quick View - run a Quick View on the current person
  17. Records Gramplet - see world's records of your data
  18. Related relatives Gramplet - see partners being relatives
  19. Relatives Gramplet - see the relatives of the active person
  20. Session Log Gramplet - keep track of what you have done, and what records you have visited
  21. Statistics Gramplet - see stats on the database
  22. Surname Cloud Gramplet - most popular surnames as a "text cloud"
  23. TODO Gramplet - a notepad to keep tabs on your research
  24. Top Surnames Gramplet - top 10 most popular surnames
  25. Welcome Gramplet - a Gramps welcome message
  26. What's Next Gramplet - what needs to be done next

Here you can see the other gramplets currently available:

  • Clock Gramplet - a nice example of grafical gramplet
  • Data Entry Gramplet - edit active person's name, birth date and place, death date and place, and add people
  • Note Gramplet - see and edit active person's primary Person Note
  • Headline News Gramplet - current, breaking news from Gramps
  • FAQ Gramplet - frequently asked questions
  • Python Gramplet - a Python shell

Gramplets available in the Dashboard Category

When you first start the Dashboard Category you will see two default Gramplets; the Welcome to Gramps (Message) Gramplet and the Top Surnames Gramplet.

This section describes each gramplet available from the Dashboard Category and its basic functionality.

Age on Date Gramplet

Fig. 10.5 Age On Date Gramplet
Fig. 10.6 Age On Date Quick Report

This Gramplet gives you the possibility of entering a date in an entry field. If you click Run the Gramplet will compute the ages for everyone in your Family Tree living on that Date. The date must be entered in a format that Gramps accepts.

You can sort the Quick Report by the Name and Age columns. Right clicking the row opens a context menu for opening Person Editor and activating the person.

Age Stats Gramplet

Fig. 10.7 Age Stats Gramplet

The Age Stats gramplet shows graphs of the breakdown of 5 years age spans, of three stats: all people, difference between father and child and difference between mother and child. Clicking on a row will bring up the associated people in Quick Report.

Double clicking a row in a stats opens a Quick Report of all people contained in the row. You can sort the Quick Report by the Name, Birth Date and Name Type columns. Right clicking the row opens a context menu for opening Person Editor and activating the person.

You can change the gramplet's options by selecting from toolbar the configure active view button.

Fig. 10.8 Age Stats Gramplet showing options

Calendar Gramplet

Fig. 10.9 Calendar

The Calendar gramplet shows a monthly calendar. Double-click a day to run the On This Day Quick View.

With the < and > buttons top left corner (month) you can change to the previous and next month.

With the < and > buttons top right corner (year) you can change to the previous and next year.

The Quick View window shows you the Events of the selected day: Events on this exact date and Other events on this Month/day in history as well as Other events in that year.

The information is presented in a table showing:

  • Date
  • Type
  • Place
  • Reference

You can also drag a date to the date field of the Age on Date Gramplet to enter that date.

Given Name Cloud Gramplet

Fig. 10.10 Given Name Cloud Gramplet

Like the Surname Cloud Gramplet, the Given Name Cloud gramplet shows the top most popular given names in your family tree. The size of the name indicates how popular it is. Mouse over the name to see the exact count, and the percent of people in the family tree that have that name.

The gramplet splits up given names into words (broken up by spaces). For example "Sarah Elizabeth" would appear under both "Sarah" and "Elizabeth".

Double-click on the given name to bring up a Quick View of all of the matching people.

Quick View Gramplet

Fig. 10.11 Quick View Gramplet

The Quick View gramplet allows you to run a Quick View, it updates as you move from person to person. (Currently, only People Quick Views can be run).

You can run any of the Quick Views for a person.

You can change the options by clicking the Option button (top, left hand button of the Gramplet) which will detach the gramplet and bring it up an a window. Select Options on the top row, and a list of options will appear. Press Save to apply the changes to the Quick View. You may then close the window to reattach the gramplet.

Currently, the Quick View Gramplet doesn't remember which Quick View between Gramps sessions, so you'll have to reselect it when you restart Gramps. (This will be fixed in an upcoming version of Gramps ???).

Records Gramplet

Fig 10.12 Records Gramplet

The Records Gramplet shows a number of interesting facts about the records (mostly age related) from your database. The list shows the top three for each element.

  • Youngest living person
  • Oldest living person
  • Person died at youngest age
  • Person died at oldest age
  • Person married at youngest age
  • Person married at oldest age
  • Person divorced at youngest age
  • Person divorced at oldest age
  • Youngest father
  • Youngest mother
  • Oldest father
  • Oldest mother
  • Couple with most children
  • Living couple married most recently
  • Living couple married most long ago
  • Shortest past marriage
  • Longest past marriage

The list is not only interesting on its own, it is also a good sanity check of the data. For some items you have to fill in some additional information.

This following example shows that there was a marriage event (thus calculation of the offset) but none of the persons had a death event. Even if the date is not known, just enter a death event for one of the partners and the list will be corrected.

Living couple married most long ago
# van Dosselaere, Egidius and Rechters, Petronella (382 years, 1 month)
# de Richter, Petrus and Asscericx, Catharina (379 years, 9 months)

Session Log Gramplet

Fig. 10.13 Session Log Gramplet

The session log keeps track of activity in this session. It lists selected and edited objects.

Click a name once to make this person the active person. Double-click on a name or family brings up the edit page for that object. In addition, if you want to edit a person, but don't want to change the active person, you can right-click on the person's name.

This gramplet is handy because you can very quickly change the active person, or edit the object, from the session list.

Statistics Gramplet

Fig. 10.14 Statistics Gramplet

The Statistics gramplet runs a Statistics report. Double-click the phrases to bring up the matching items.

Following information is provided to you in this Gramplet:

  • Individuals
    • Number of individuals
    • Males
    • Females
    • Individuals with unknown gender
    • Individuals with incomplete names
    • Individuals with missing birth dates
    • Disconnected individuals
  • Family information
    • Number of families
    • Unique surnames
  • Media objects
    • Individuals with media objects
    • Total numbers of media object references
    • Number of unique media objects
    • Total size of media objects
    • Missing Media Objects

As with all Gramplets if you click on the left hand side Tool button you detach the window and if you add persons to your family tree, you will see the amount of individuals change dynamically.

Surname Cloud Gramplet

Fig. 10.15 Surname Cloud

The surname cloud gramplet shows the top 100 (by default) used surnames. The name font size is proportional to the amount of people with the same name.

Double-click a surname to run the Same Surnames Quick View. This will open the Quick View window where you can find all people with a matching or alternate name. Person, birth date and name type are given.

If you mouse over the name you see the percentage of occurrence and total counts.

Change the number of names displayed by editing this section in ~/.gramps/gramps40/gramplets.ini

To Do Gramplet

Fig. 10.16 To Do Gramplet

A To Do Gramplet is free form text area. You can use this area to put some notes, remarks, things you should to get your research going. There are several other To Do programs (e.g. Tomboy e.a.) but these Gramplets are useful as the information stays within the Gramps database.

To Do Gramplets allow you to create notes and attach them to Gramps objects. For example, you can add a Person To Do Gramplet to the sidebar of the Person View. Notes added using this Gramplet will be attached to the currently active person. There is a To Do Gramplet for each Gramps primary object type.

There is also To Do gramplet available for the Dashboard that lists all To Do notes in the database, together with the object to which they are attached.

Top Surnames Gramplet

Fig. 10.17 Top 10 Surnames

The top surnames gramplet shows the top 10 (by default) used surnames.

The top ten is presented as follows:

  • Surname
  • percentage
  • occurrences

The list gives you also the Total unique surnames in the database as well as the total number of people in your database.

Double-click a surname to run the Same Surnames Quick View. This opens the Quick View window, which gives the people with the surname you double-clicked.

A table is presented which shows all people with a matching name or alternate name. Person's name, birth date and name type is given.

Change the number of names displayed by editing this section in ~/.gramps/gramplets.ini

Welcome Gramplet

Fig. 10.18 Welcome Gramplet

The welcome gramplet gives an introductory message to new users, and some basic instructions.

The welcome message describes what Gramps is, that the program is Open Source Software and how you start a Family Tree.

This information can also be found on the start page of Gramps

What's Next Gramplet

Fig 10.19 What's Next Gramplet

The What's Next Gramplet displays a list of the "most urgent" information gaps in your family tree. It is based on the following assumptions:

  • You want to know first and last name, birth date and place, and death date and place of each person
  • You want to know father, mother, marriage date and place, and - if divorced - divorce date and place of each family with married parents
  • You want to know at least the mother of each family with unmarried parents
  • The closer the relationship to the main person, the more "urgent" the information gap is.
  • The closer the common ancestor is from the main person, the more "urgent" the information is (e.g. nephews are considered more "urgent" than uncles, even though both have a distance of 3, because for nephews the common ancestor is father/mother, while for uncles, the common ancestor is grandfather/grandmother)
  • Marriage data and personal data of the spouse is slightly less "urgent" than personal data of the directly related person
  • Half brothers are less "urgent" than brothers

Gramplets available in the Sidebar and bottombar of other Categories

Since Gramps 4.0 we have common and specific gramplets according active view (navigation/category).

  • Back references gramplets are like the references tab on object Editor.
  • Filter gramplet is like the previous filter sidebar
  • Common models for Notes, Gallery, Sources, Citations, Events
  • Children gramplet on Person views (also ancestry category and relations), family view

People Category

Attributes Gramplet

Fig. 10.20 Attributes Gramplet
Fig. 10.21 Attributes Quick View

The Attributes gramplet shows all of the attributes for the current, active person. Double click on the name of the attribute, and you will run a Quick View that shows all of the people that have that attribute, and the values for it. You can sort the Quick View by the attribute value by clicking on the column name.

In the Quick View, highlight the entry to change the active person (which will then change the Attributes Gramplet), and double-click the Quick View entry to bring up the Edit Person dialog window.

Descendant Gramplet

Fig. 10.22 Descendant Gramplet

The Descendant gramplet shows the direct descendants of the active person.

The order of the spouses and children is that given in the Gramps editor. To change the order of spouses, click on Order on the Relationship view. To change the order of children, drag and drop them in the correct order in the Family edit window.

This gramplet is based on the Descendant Report, available from the Textual Reports.

The Descendant gramplet will update when you change the active person, or change family trees. It does not update automatically for edits or additions because this report is time-consuming to run.

Minimizing a gramplet will prevent it from updating.

Person details

Fan Chart Gramplet

Fig. 10.23 Fan Chart Gramplet

The Fan Chart gramplet shows the direct ancestors of the active person in a circular format. It is similar to the Pedigree View, but shown around the center/active person, and further generations spiralling out.

Click on a parent in the chart and they will expand or contract above their child. Right-click on a person and you can:

  • select that person to be the active person
  • edit the person
  • select from among the person's relatives to be the active person

Clicking in an open area (non-person) and dragging the mouse will allow you to rotate the chart about the center. In Gramps 4.0, you may also left-click and drag in the center to reposition the fan chart.

A white edge on the outer radius of the chart indicates more parents for that person. A black circle in the center indicates that the center person has children.

The Fan Chart gramplet will update when you change the active person, or change family trees.

Minimizing a gramplet will prevent it from updating.

Pedigree Gramplet

Fig. 10.24 Pedigree Gramplet

The Pedigree gramplet shows a compressed view of the active person's direct ancestors. It defaults to going back 100 generations. The names can be clicked to change the active person, double-clicked (or right-click) to edit the person. This Gramplet also shows at the bottom of the gramplet the number of people per generation. Double-click the Generation number to see the matching individuals.

In Gramps 4.0, you can now see birth and death dates next to a person's name.

Relatives Gramplet

Fig 10.25 Relatives Gramplet

This Gramplet shows all direct relatives of the active person. It's intended use is as a navigation help, an alternative way to move through your Gramps database. If you detach the gramplet, and place it next to Gramps, it will allow you to use it to easily change the content of the current "person view".

If you are working in the ancestry views, the active person is the left-most person. By clicking a name in the relatives gramplet, you can easily change the active person, and all person view in the other window will update. As the relatives gramplet shows all spouses, all children and all parents, this offers an alternative way of navigating your data.

The names in this gramplet also allow you to call up the person editor directly, by right-clicking on any of the names.

Places Category

Media Category

Image Metadata Gramplet

Fig. 10.26 Image Metadata Gramplet

The Image Metadata Gramplet offers an easy interface to add, edit, and remove Image Exif Metadata from your images (*.jpg, *.png. *.tiff, *.exv, *.nef, *.psd, *.pgf).

Special Note

Before being able to use this gramplet/ addon, you will need to download and install pyexiv2 or install pyexiv2 from your local Linux repository. Windows user, there is an installer for you. Ubuntu, use the Universe repository to find pyexiv2.

Once you have installed pyexiv2, see above for directions to download and install this addon...

Pyexiv2 can be used from the command line interface (cli) as well, and from within a python script:

  1. import the pyexiv2 library
    from pyexiv2 import ImageMetadata, ExifTag
  2. specify your image
    image = ImageMetadata("/home/user/image.jpg")
  3. read the image

Exif, IPTC, XMP metadata reference tags can be found here.


image["Exif.Image.Artist"] # Artist
Smith and Johnson's Photography Studio
image["Exif.Image.DateTime"] # DateTime
1826 Apr 12 14:00:00
image["Exif.Image.DateTime"] = # Add DateTime
image.write() # write the Metadata

Usage scenario

My perferred way to use this addon is:

  1. install pyexiv2
  2. Install this addon
  3. Restart Gramps
  4. Click Views from the Menu bar, and select Media Views
  5. Open the Side Bar
  6. Slide the available empty right view to about half the screen.
  7. Right click text to the Side Bar tab, and select Add a Gramplet
  8. Select Image Metadata Gramplet
  9. Select an image from the left hand MediaView

The interface

Data Fields
The name of the person or company taking the image
Select Date
Will bring up a calendar, and double-click on a date. The time will be filled in as the current time
The Date/ Time needs to be typed in as a very specific format:
Year Mon Day Hour:Minutes:Seconds
1826 Apr 12 14:06:00
Can be anything that you please... Ex: (C) 2010 Smith and Wesson
Please enter keywords that describe the picture. Do NOT add a space after the comma. Ex. : Census,Milwaukee,Oregon
Latitude/ Longitude
Latitude/ Longitude data can be entered in one of two ways:
  1. Degrees Minutes Seconds Ex.: 10 59 14
    In this format, you will need to select latitude reference, and longitude reference
    If the Latitude begins with a negative number, select 'S' as Lat. Ref. or 'N' if a positive number. If the Longitude begins with a negative number, select 'W' as the Long. Ref. or 'E' if a positive number.
  2. Decimal, Ex. : -34.15954
    In this format, the Latitude and Longitude reference will be selected for you after you click Convert GPS Coordinates or press the Save button. For foreign countries that might use a ", " instead of a ".", please use the "."
Type in something about the image, the people in it or the location of the image. Non-latin characters are NOT allowed. ASCII characters only...
  1. Save
    Will write the metadata to the image, and convert latitude/ longitude if it is in decimal format.
  2. Clear
    Will clear all data fields
  3. Convert GPS Coordinates
    will convert Latitude/ Longitude if it is in decimal format

My favorite source for GPS Coordinates is: GPS Visualizer

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