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Design map using custom rule

The following steps guides you to design a map using custom color rule and custom distribution to display the annual gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate of each country for year 2019 to produce a display similar to a heat map.

Create data set

  1. In the data panel, click New Data. New data
  2. Choose the JSON connection type. JSON connection
  3. Choose File as Type. Choose source type
  4. Click on the upload button, browse and upload the JSON file in File Path field. Provide connection details
  5. Click on the Connect button.
  6. In the query builder, the available fields in JSON file will be loaded under default table name, Result. Enter query
  7. Drag and drop the Result table and execute. Execute table
  8. Modify the data set Name and click Finish. Data list

Note: Download the sample JSON file from here. This data is downloaded from Data world bank.

Add map to the report design

The Map report item is listed under Data Regions category in the item panel.

Map listed in item panel

To add a Map report item to the report, drag the map from the item panel into design area.

Drag map into design surface

Now, the map item will be rendered in the design area and the map properties will be listed in properties panel.

Basic map rendering

By default map report item renders with world map shapes.

Bind analytical and shape data

In the Properties panel, under the Basic Settings category, choose the data set in the DataSet property.

Basic map rendering

Then click on the edit icon for the Binding Data property under Basic Settings. Edit icon

Refer Binding Data section and match analytical and shape data. Choose name in the Field Name drop-down and choose the =Fields!Country.Value expression in Binding Expression.

Edit icon

Click on the Update.

Customize map appearance

Let’s customize the map title, legend, color settings, and other properties.


Under the Appearance category, set the border width and color properties as required.

Edit icon


Under the Title category, set the title text, position, and font properties for the map title. First, enable the Enable Title check box. Then, add the title and position. Title text


Under the Legend category, enable the Enable Legend check box. Set the background color as White, position BottomCenter, legend mode as Interactive, and set the =Fields!IndicatorName.Value as expression for Title. Legend

Shape settings

Under the Shape Settings, set the border color as #81808c and width as 0.667px and tooltip as = Fields!Country.Value + " : "+ Round(Fields!GDP.Value, 3) expression. Shape settings

Shape color rule

Under Shape color rule category, enable the Enable Color Rule check box.

  • Choose the Sum(GDP) in Data Value.
  • Choose Custom as the Type. Refer Custom colors section and set the color codes following colors in the custom colors panel: #cfedfb, #aadee8, #9cd2ed, #70bdff, and #4d739e.Shape settings
  • Choose Custom for Distribution type. Indicate your own number of data ranges to decide the distribution of values.
  • Refer Custom distribution section and define custom range as follows:Shape settings

The shape color rule configuration should be as below,


Now, the colors are applied to the map shapes but with sample data.

Initial design

To see the actual data on map surface, preview the report. Before that, resize the width and height of the map, so as to view the information clearly in preview.

Final design

Preview report

You can preview the report at design time using the built-in Bold Reports Viewer to ensure the report design is as expected. Switch to the preview mode to see the country name and GDP growth rate when you hover on each shape of the map surface. In the following snapshot, we can observe that the color distribution is applied based on the GDP growth rate of countries.

Report preview

Download the above report design from link.