Tagged Values are additional properties that can be assigned to UML elements and connectors. The UML defines properties such as name and description for elements and connectors, and Enterprise Architect adds a number of additional properties such as status, phase and author, but Tagged Values provide a means of defining your own properties (tags) and their values.
For example, a requirements modeler might want to record the owner of a set of requirements. The UML doesn’t specify this property, but it can be easily added as a tag. A tag named Requirement Owner could be created and then each Requirement element could be assigned a value for the owner. This information would also be available in documentation.
Enterprise Architect has enriched the basic concept of Tagged Values with its powerful structured Tagged Value facility. To assist you when entering data, the values can be restricted using user interface controls such as drop down lists, spin controls, date selectors and many more.
Tagged Values are widely used in profiles and technologies to add information that helps guide the presentation of elements or metadata for code or schema generation.
The Tagged Values tab
The 'Properties' dialog and Properties window both have 'Tag' tabs that you can use to view and modify Tagged Values for a modeling item selected either from the current diagram or in the Browser window. On the tab you can:
- Assign a Tagged Value to an Item
- Modify Tagged Values
- Assign Notes to a Tagged Value
- Perform advanced tag management
Note that Tagged Values from stereotypes are not displayed on the 'Tags' tab, but in the:
- Properties window, in a section of the main page underneath the 'General' page and
- 'Properties' dialog, on a separate <extension name> tab
Model Elements and Features with Tagged Values
These model components can use the 'Tagged Values' tab as a convenient way to quickly view and modify Tagged Values:
- Elements - display their own tags, along with any inherited values
- Object Instances - display their own tags and those obtained from their classifier
- Ports and Parts - display similar information to objects but show the Port/Part 'Type' instead of a classifier; tags are included for all parents and other structures of the Ports type
- Attributes - display their own tags and those received from attribute type classifiers, with the inclusion of any inherited tags
- Operations - display their own tags
- Connectors - display their own tags
When over-riding an inherited property, the system copies the tag from the parent down to the child element and sets the new value, leaving the original tag unchanged.
Tagged Values Toolbar Buttons
Using the buttons from the toolbar at the top of the 'Tags' tab in the Properties window or dialog, you can add, edit, sort, delete and rearrange the Tagged Values of model features.
From left to right, the button functions are:
- Show in compartments - displays the Tagged Values in element compartments on diagrams
- Sort and Show Alphabetically - sorts the current Tagged Values alphabetically for the element
- New Tagged Value - adds a new tag, to which you assign a value
- Edit Tagged Value Notes - opens a note in which you type an explanation of the purpose of the Tagged Value
- Delete Tagged Value - removes the currently selected Tagged Value
- Default Tagged Value Types - provides quick access to tag definitions created using the 'Configure > Reference Data > UML Types > Tagged Value Types' ribbon option
- Tagged Value Options - provides options to show or hide the fully qualified paths for the Tagged Values in the window, and to show duplicate Tagged Values
- Help - displays information on the use of Tagged Values