Grouping Columns and new table entry problem

Hey all!
Colour me a little confused.

I have a very simple table called Workflows and a second called workflow stages.
The first column of workflow stages looks up workflows. It is grouped to make things much easier to view.

However, when it comes to adding to this - it gets tricky.
I add a new workflow to the workflow table.
Then when I go to add a new row to the workflow stages table, I get a message I’m not fully understanding…

Of course, if I ungroup there’s no problem adding - but I don’t want to ask people who use the doc to have to do that.

Have I missed something important about groups?

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I actually agree that the grouping needs some work.
That’s been a while that there are some small features like what you’re talking about that needs implementation.

  • Better handling new values
  • Colour, conditional formatting and simple formatting needs
  • Better Lookup handling

Yes indeed.
I guess I’m most interested in figuring out what the UI is trying to tell me when it says
“Add rows in lookup table Workflows to add new groups”
I add new rows, but you still can’t add new groups without removing the groups.

Well, it says that you cannot create a new workflow through a table where you’re just pulling it in. To create a new workflow, you have to add a row in the Workflows table, then add stage rows to it in the Workflow Stages table.

The advice I like to give and adhere to is to always keep master tables ungrouped, unsorted, with all columns visible (I call them “vanilla table views”), and only use groups in views and for presentation purposes only. It’s very inconvenient to manually modify table data/rows/structure when they are displayed as something different than vanilla tables.

For end users, you should create a section with some nicer UI (I imagine buttons and some styled tables) if you intend to have them creating new workflows and setting up stages.

Also you should rename the Name column in Stages table to Workflow, to better illustrate that these stages correspond to this/that workflow.

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@Brendan_Woithe yeah getting structured data into Coda from users who aren’t familiar with Coda’s nuances is difficult right now. I recommend using a form builder like Cognito Forms, which allows LOTS of customization, rules, data lookups, and then Zap the info into your new table.

This concept has allowed me to make web-facing, embeddable, public forms in Cognito that any user can access with their device, while sandboxing the Coda inner workings. Good luck!

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There’s also an option with right click on the group which lets you display all options.

But I had already added a row in the workflows table. It was after doing this & was trying to add stage rows in the workflow stages table that error came up. Thus my confusion.
I’m guessing i just can’t do it without unfolding the group. Which is cool - but the message to me is confusing at best :slight_smile:


Well, you don’t press the (+) button there. You double-press the group to change the value

As for some groups not showing — @tomavatars is right, Right click on the grouped column -> select Arrange and manage groups -> enable Show all groups:

And every time I have a problem, the solution is easy! There’s just so much to learn. Thanks again Paul & all!

I actually REALLY like the implementation. Just took some understanding!

I personally don’t really like to be forced to show all groups for that purpose in this case. I hope it’ll be more clear and more complete in the future.

Yes - I can see it depends on what you are trying to do :slight_smile:

as is so often the case with a platform like coda!

Hey guys @tomavatars and @Paul_Danyliuk, when you get a moment hoping you can help me with a related question I’m looking for an answer on, but all I could find was this thread:

I am trying to use a SubTable to help me with Meeting notes - if it sounds familiar I’ve been working on this for an age and potentially you’ve both already helped me in the past!

Anyway, the way I’d like to do this is have the meeting agenda in a Subtable, in a way that I can have each row run the agenda. What I’d like to do is have the leftmost column grouped as the “subject” of a discussion. Each row is an actual discussion. So at times if the subject results in, say, three relevant discussions, I can use the left column to track the subject that each individual discussion row was about:

I am having trouble adding at all to a subtable while the row is grouped, unlike here in this thread in the case of the Master Table Grouping. I want to avoid doing any Master Table grouping as that’s sound advice by Paul.

So I set up for now a 2nd view of the table that at least shows me the groupings as I add rows in the top subtable where I type the live notes. But this is an awkward workaround.

I have asked Coda support to answer if a Group can be added to when it’s in a subtable, no answer yet.

And I’m also eager to get some guidelines about this, I posted the request here with no response:

As this trips me up a lot!

I have to say it would really disappoint me if the great grouping ability of Coda doesn’t actually work in one of Coda’s other great features, Subtables.

Appreciate any thoughts at all you guys have, cheers!

Hi @ABp
I’m sorry, but I don’t really understand what you want to achieve. Can you simply describe it? Thanks.

@tomavatars, thanks for the response. Sorry for all the detail, I think it was too much for the simple question I was hoping to answer:

Simply, can you expand a table through a Grouping (in this case on the left) when it’s in a subtable? I haven’t been able to do this, although I can do it when a Master Table is grouped.

Hopefully that is clearer, thanks again!