The MAP Selections panel provides options to build, edit, save and apply multiple selection criteria based on:

Attribute Selections: selections based on attributes and properties of MAP Layers

Art Selections: selections based on selected art (done with the MAP Selections filters or with the Adobe Illustrator selection functions)

Spatial Selections: selections based on a feature's position relative to another (e.g. select points contained in a given area).


MAP Selections are saved in the Adobe Illustrator document. The Copy MAP Objects From feature provides a method to exchange MAP Selections between documents opened in Adobe Illustrator.

Expressions created for Attribute Selection type MAP Selections can be saved in the Expression Library so that it can be used in MAP Attributes and MAP Themes stylesheets.


To save or use a MAP Selection, at least one piece of art must be selected on the artboard before creating a new selection. This selection does not have to be on a MAP layer, although it must be visible and unlocked.

Create a MAP Selection

To open the MAP Selections panel, click the MAP Selections button on the MAPublisher toolbar or from the menu  Window > MAPublisher > MAP Selections.


To create a new MAP Selection, click the Create New MAP Selection button or from the panel options menu to open the New MAP Selection dialog box.


Enter a meaningful Name for the new MAP Selection to facilitate its use. For example, a MAP Selection could be named Cities or Countries with 80% or higher literacy or US Highways.

Choose the desired MAP Selection Type: Attribute Selection, Art Selection or Spatial Selection.

Attribute Selection

Attribute Selections select objects on one or more MAP Layers based on the features' attributes values or properties. The selection criteria is an expression created from attributes names, values and/or preset functions.


By default, the selection is done on the currently selected layer. Users may choose a different layer or more layers by clicking the Layers button to open the Select Layers dialog box. Check any layers that may need to be included.


In the Expression field, enter a valid expression. Optionally, click the Expression Builder button to open the Expression Builder dialog box or click the Expression Library button to choose a saved or recent expression from the Expression Library. The Expression Validity icon will report if the expression entered is valid or invalid (and will include additional warning notes).

information The expression validity depends on the layer selection since it is based on some attribute column names.


The following are some examples of basic expressions which can be entered for use as selection filters.




NAME = “Ontario”

All items with the value “Ontario” in the NAME column are selected.

NAME = “Ontario” OR NAME = “Alberta”

Result: Items with the value “Ontario” OR “Alberta” in the NAME column are selected.

POPULATION < 1000000

All items with values less than one million in the POPULATION column are selected.

NAME = “Ontario” AND POPULATION < 1000000

Only items containing the value “Ontario” in the NAME column AND values less than one million in the POPULATION column are selected.


information MAP Selections created in MAPublisher 8.3 or earlier are converted to MAP Selection Attribute Selections, based on the <current layer>.

Art Selection

To store a current selection—done through the MAP Selections panel or using the Adobe Illustrator selection functions (e.g. Selection tool, menu Select or Layers panel)—choose Art Selection from the Type drop-down list. No parameters are required for this type of MAP Selection. The current selection must be performed before creating a new MAP selection.


Spatial Selection

A Spatial Selection selects sets of objects based on their position on the artboard.


A Spatial Selection is based on a selection of features, the boundaries of which are used as a limit for the final selection. The Use Spatial Properties From drop-down list sets the selection of these features. Three options are available:

Existing MAP Selection: the delimiting features are taken from a saved MAP Selection. The MAP Selection name is chosen in the Existing MAP Selection drop-down list below.

Art Selection: the current artboard selection is used (the selection must be performed before creating the new Spatial Selection). The current selection is stored as part of the Spatial Selection for later use.

Attribute Selection: the delimiting features are selected based on new attribute selection parameters.


Once the delimiting features are specified, additional Options can be set.


By default, all objects contained within the delimiting features will be selected, regardless on which layer they belong to. The Select From Layer(s) option can be applied to limit which layers will be included in the final selection. To do so, click the Layers button to open the Select Layers dialog box. Note that MAP Layers and Non-MAP Layers are available for selection.


The Spatial Relationship drop-down list offers two options for the selection method:

Intersect and contain: objects that intersect or are contained within the delimiting features will be selected.

Fully contained: only objects that fully contained within the delimiting features will be selected.


The option Do not select art on the same layer as the 'Use Spatial Properties From' art is meant to avoid art that is on the same layer as a delimiting feature from being selected based on that feature. For example, if the Spatial Relationship is set to Intersect and contain, all areas that share a boundary with an area that is a delimiting feature will be selected. With this option, areas that are on the same layer as the delimiting feature will be excluded from the selection.


Edit a MAP Selection

To edit an existing MAP Selection, click the selection name in the MAP Selections panel and choose Edit MAP Selection in the panel options menu. Alternatively, double-click the selection name.


The Edit MAP Selection dialog box allows to rename the MAP Selection and to edit the selection parameters. The dialog box options depend on the MAP Selection type.


When editing an Attribute Selection, the selection layer and the expression may be edited as new.


When editing an Art Selection, three options are offered:

Show Selection: shows the stored Art Selection on the artboard.

Replace: if art is selected, replace the stored Art Selection with the current selection.

Add: if art is selected, add the current selection to the stored Art Selection.


When editing a Spatial Selection, all the parameters may be changed. If the Use Spatial Properties From drop-down is set to an Art Selection, the same edit options as above are available (Show Selection, Replace and Add).

Delete a MAP Selection

Click one or more selection names in the MAP Selections panel, then click the Delete button or choose Delete MAP Selection in the panel options menu.

information Use caution when deleting, some selections may be dependent on others.

Make Selections

Click the Apply button when creating a MAP Selection. Saved MAP Selections can be applied again at any time.

information MAP Selections based on Attribute Selections that are set to <use current layer> may become invalid when a different layer is selected because its attribute schema may not match the expression.


There are four methods for applying a MAP Selection (available as buttons and menu items):

Apply as New Selection: Clears the current selection and selects any art on the current layer that meets the criteria of chosen selection filters

Add to Current Selection: Adds any art on the current layer that satisfies chosen selection filters to the current selection

Remove from Current Selection: Deselects any art on the current layer that is selected and satisfies chosen selection filters

Get Subset of Current Selection: Deselects any art on the current layer that is selected and does not satisfy chosen selection filters

information These selection combinations can themselves be saved as an Art Selection.

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Last updated: 4/10/2019