Key Concepts: Parts of a Timeline
A timeline is composed of a series of events: an occurrence that happens at a particular time and place for a given duration.
Events are represented graphically on the timeline with their title, color, date and duration. Events have a number of additional properties that can be configured, including notes, tags (keywords), other properties, and relationships with entities (see right), which can be viewed on the timeline by expanding an event.
Aeon Timeline allows you to associate events with people, locations, projects, story arcs, and more – collectively known within Aeon Timeline as entities. Entities have a name and a type (e.g. Person, Location) as defined in the chosen template, and can have relationships with any number of events.
Entities can also have start/birth and end/death dates or events, from which Aeon Timeline can calculate ages.
Relationships represent a connection between an event and an entity. This may represent a particular person was present at an event, or an event belongs to a particular story arc or project.
Relationships are many-to-many, meaning each event can have relationships with multiple entities, and each entity may have relationships with multiple events.
When specifying a relationship, you also specify the role that the entity fulfils for that event. Many entity types may only allow a single role, but some types may have multiple roles – for instance, a person may be a participant in an event, or just a witness. Roles are defined in the timeline’s template.
Aeon Timeline can visually divide events into a number of groups based on their relationships with particular entities. If you choose to group by Person, for instance, there will be a separate group created to represent each person. Likewise, you may group by story arc or location or project.
An event can be displayed in multiple groups.
Each time you create a new timeline, you will do so by choosing an initial template. Templates define the following information about a timeline:
- The timeline style (absolute date, relative date, numeric) and calendar
- Entity types and their roles
- Additional properties users can create for an event
- Colors to be associated with an event (and their name)
Aeon Timeline ships with a range of standard templates for fiction writers, project managers, legal practitioners, and historians. The initial template can be edited via Timeline Settings, and saved as a custom template for you to use in future.