How is TAPAS related to the TEI?

TAPAS is an initiative arising from the TEI community, and TAPAS membership is a benefit of TEI membership. TAPAS aims to support the use of the TEI Guidelines and the creation of high-quality TEI data. TAPAS is working closely with the TEI Consortium to develop a shared vision for TAPAS that will benefit TEI members and encourage broader support for the TEI.

What is TAPAS? Who is TAPAS?

TAPAS is a project hosted by Northeastern University and a collaborative effort involving many institutions and people who support TAPAS in different ways., TAPAS was created through generous funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services ( , the National Endowment for the Humanities (, and the TEI Consortium (

How can I explore the TAPAS collection as a whole?

TAPAS is a large and growing community of projects and TEI collections. To get a broad overview of everything TAPAS contains, you can use the "Discover TAPAS" tab in the menu to see a complete list of projects and collections.

Accounts & Memberships


What is the difference between a project and a collection?

A TAPAS "project" is essentially an organization or a group of people working together. A project might be something like a digital humanities center, or an institution, or a digital humanities project, or a group of scholars who are collaborating on a digital publication. A TAPAS "collection" is a set of texts that belong together and that are intended to function as a single TAPAS publication. A project may have one or more collections. For instance, the ABC College Library might set up a TAPAS project, and that project might include several TAPAS collections representing different sets of materials (the letters of John Jones; the travel diaries of Mary Smith, the financial papers of Ellen Brown). Each collection can be published in TAPAS as a distinct publication, with its own reading and search interface and its own URL.

Can I be associated with more than one project?

Yes, an individual user can be associated with more than one project. As a user, you can create one or more projects yourself, and you can also be invited to join projects owned by other users.

Can a project have more than one administrator?

Yes, a project can have more than one administrator. Whoever first creates the project can invite other users to join the project, and can assign them roles as appropriate.

Can I have more than one TAPAS account?

Yes, you can create more than one TAPAS account.

Can I have more than one TAPAS project?

Yes, as a TAPAS user you can create more than one TAPAS project.

Can my project have more than one collection?

Yes, a single TAPAS project can have one or more collections. (It must have at least one; the first one is created for you by default.)

Do I have to use collections?

Yes, the collection is the basic way that TAPAS handles the publication and sharing of TEI data. Every project includes at least one collection, and every TEI text uploaded to TAPAS must be part of at least one collection.

How do I close my account?

To close your account, click on "My account" and follow the instructions for deleting an account. Please note that if you are the sole administrator for a TAPAS project, that project will be deleted when you delete the account.

Uploading and Managing Content

How do I edit/change/update the metadata for a TEI file?

You can edit the metadata for individual TEI files by clicking on the "Manage Content" link within the relevant collection.

How do I add TEI content?

You can add TEI files to an existing collection by visiting the collection page and clicking "Add Content." You can also create a new collection (and add TEI files to it) by choosing "Add collection" from within your project page.

What if I use a custom TEI schema?

In a sense, all TEI schemas are custom schemas. TAPAS will typically accept most TEI data that validates against the TEI-All schema: that is, data that does not add any new elements or make radical changes to the overall TEI document structure. Some less commonly used elements may not display in an appropriate way, since we are focusing first on handling the most common TEI elements. Over time, TAPAS will handle a wider range of TEI data. If you are using a custom schema in which you have created new elements, or made very significant changes to the TEI document structure, your changed elements may not display in the way you expect. The TAPAS schema is designed to detect encoding that will tend to behave abnormally within the TAPAS interface, and you will receive warnings about these features. Future versions of TAPAS may permit you to use both custom schemas and custom stylesheets to permit the use of highly customized data.

What if I have my own stylesheets?

At present, TAPAS does not provide for user-developed stylesheets. However, this is an important feature for us to develop in the future. Please stay tuned!

Can TAPAS handle images? (page images)

Yes, TAPAS supports both page images and embedded images. TAPAS is not intended as a way to store high-quality archival images; images in TAPAS are intended as supporting materials for TEI documents. As a result we do not currently accept TIFF images.

    On page break:
  • <pb n="1" facs="page1.png"/>

On Figure:

  • <figure>
    <head>. . . </head>
    <figDesc> . . . </figDesc>
    <graphic url=""

Why are my page images not displaying correctly in the reader?

There are many possible explanations for why an image file is not displaying in the reader. Please see the following check list:

  1. Have your image files been properly uploaded to the TEI record referencing them? Upload all your image support files for this TEI record under "Auxiliary Files" upload in record creation form. You can view the "Files" tab in your TEI record's reader view to see whether your files have successfully been upload.
  2. Check that your markup is adhering to the TEI guidelines on handling images.
  3. Check your file naming. We've seen some issues in how users create their file names. Be sure that your file names do not contain any whitespace. See here ( for an example.

Can TAPAS handle audio, video, GIS,....

At present TAPAS does not plan to support file formats other than TEI and image files. Other materials may be hosted elsewhere and linked from your TEI data.

What are TAPAS’s rules concerning copyright for TAPAS content?

The overall goal of TAPAS is to make TEI data more widely accessible. Copyright for TEI data and other project content remains with the project owners. However, when you publish your data with TAPAS, you are given the choice of several open-access licenses that give permission for reuse. You also have the option of keeping your project and collections private. This option is particularly appropriate in cases where your project is under development and you want to keep it private until it is ready for public view. TAPAS is not primarily intended for the creation of access-restricted publications.

What rights/permissions do I need to get for my TAPAS content?

When you publish your data with TAPAS, you affirm that you have permission to make that data public as part of your project, and you supply appropriate information to provide credit to any third parties.

How can I find out if my files are valid?

TAPAS does not have any way of determining whether your files are valid against your own schemas. However, when you upload TEI data to TAPAS, it will be validated against the TAPAS schemas. These schemas are chiefly diagnostic and are aimed at giving you information about how well your data will function within the TAPAS environment. The system will give you messages aimed at helping you adapt your data as needed. These messages will probably be standard validation output at first but over time we will provide more helpful messages.

Does it matter whether my files are valid?

The most significant role of validity within TAPAS is to detect whether your files contain features that will behave oddly within the publication interface, and to detect whether your files contain features that may enable them to take advantage of certain more advanced features (such as timelines) when those are available. Even data that is not valid against the TAPAS schemas may function quite well within the TAPAS interface. Over time, validity may come to serve other functions.

My file was rejected--what did I do wrong?

The main reason your file might be rejected on upload is ill-formedness: TAPAS checks to make sure your TEI data is well-formed XML, and it will reject any data that is not. This is because such data can't be processed or handled in any way within the TAPAS environment, so it doesn't do any good for us to take it in.

Projects & Collections

How do I upload/change the logo for my project?

You can upload a new or updated logo by going to your project page, and choosing "Edit Elements".

Who can see my TEI documents?

This depends on how you have set up your collections. If you choose to make the content of a collection publicly visible, your TEI content will be visible to anyone who visits the TAPAS site, which will be open to the general public. If you choose to keep the content of a collection private, your TEI content will be visible only to members of your project.

How do I control the privacy/visibility of my TEI documents?

You can control the visibility of your TEI content when you set up your TAPAS collections. From your project page or from the collection page, choose "Edit Collection" and then select the appropriate choice from the "Collection content visibility" options at the bottom of the screen.

Can I delete a TEI file from TAPAS?

Yes, you can. From the collection page, click on the TEI file itself (which will take you to the reading interface) and then choose "Delete."

How much TEI data can I upload to TAPAS?

TAPAS members may upload unlimited quantities of TEI data to TAPAS. Our hosting agreement with Northeastern University includes a small annual charge for image storage, and we will be establishing appropriate limits on image uploads to allocate this storage equitably; storage of larger quantities of image data will be provided on a cost-recovery basis. We are currently working on determining these charges.

How much other data can I upload to TAPAS?

TAPAS will probably set an overall limit on the total amount of data that users can upload to TAPAS, and that limit will be determined as part of the initial launch in 2014. Additional storage will be available for a fee, to be determined.

How long will my data be stored?

TAPAS's hosting agreement with Northeastern University provides for an initial 20-year period of curation for TEI data, which is renewable by mutual agreement.

How will my data be curated?

One key goal of the TAPAS service is to provide data curation services. The specifics of these services still need to be determined, but at a basic level they will probably include automated migration of TEI data to future versions of the TEI, and basic format migration of any image files. We will also offer the option of more detailed hand curation for data that cannot be automatically migrated, probably for an additional fee.

What happens when P6 (P7, P8...) comes out?

At present we envision that migration of TAPAS data to future versions of TEI will be undertaken using automated and semi-automated tools, by TAPAS staff. We will probably also try to provide tools to assist users in doing more detailed migration of their own data, if they are still in a position to do so.

How can I learn about other TAPAS users’ encoding?

For all TEI files contributed to TAPAS, the source XML is available to the reader, so one way to learn about other users' encoding is just to look at it directly. Over time, TAPAS will also be offering some tools you can use to get summary information on other projects' encoding, such as what elements they use and how they use them.

I don’t like the way the TAPAS publication interface looks--can I change it?

At the moment, TAPAS offers a few default options for the formatting of the publication interface. We will be developing additional options over the coming year. At some point in the future, we may also enable contributors to upload their own stylesheets to further control the appearance of the publication interface.

FAQ Forum

No answer to your question(s)? Head over to the Using TAPAS and TEI Forum to ask our support team.