Insert Timestamp

Is there a way I can insert a “timestamp” into my document. I’d like to add a journal entry and start it off by adding a timestamp. Right now I am doing this manually, and it would be a lot faster to have this automated.

Hi @Joe_Wolin :slight_smile:

You can use the Now() formula to get the current time, and use a button to add that in the journal (that can be a table)
So in that way you have a table with 3 column
timestamp (can be hidden)
entry (text or whatever)
button (that concatenate the 2 information if wanted or just transpose those in another table)

extra: one could also add another column called “stored” that is a checklist, and, when you press the button, the “stored” value change from false to true, and the row is filtered away (so it is in the same table but you do not see it, using the table filter feature like “filter(stored=false)” ) and it can be shown in another view of the table :slight_smile:

extra 2: you can save one column placing the button below the table instead that having it in every row, the same approach could be used also for the timestamp using the formula outside of the table :slight_smile:

Let me know if you want me to prepare an easy example or if you want to try more complicated setup :slight_smile:

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Hi @Joe_Wolin and welcome to the community.

By journal entry, you mean what, a row in the table? A new section? A new document?

For a new document, you can insert a canvas formula thisDocument.Created()

To insert a current timestamp anywhere I just discovered a hack: type a canvas formula thisRow.Created() or thisTable.Created() — it will create an invisible anonymous table and output its creation timestamp, lol.

For new rows in the table — you got it, you can use thisRow.Created() formula in a column. Or if you want the timestamp to be editable, you can set up a default value to add to new rows:

I’d like to insert it into my document outside of a table. See screenshot.

Screen Shot 2020-01-09 at 2.20.35 PM

Hi Paul,

That hack is totally what I want. A way to insert a timestamp into my journal entry outside a table.

Onenote has a feature I used called “Insert Date” or “Insert Date and Time”

The screenshot shows date and time inserted using =Now() function, but this does not remain static so is not useful for timestamp purposes.

Hi @Joe_Wolin :slight_smile:

In that way you are just writing in the doc, and not storing any data in a table! (you want to write in a table because you want to save that information right? :slight_smile: )

I’ve prepared that example that shows you a method, my method, but if you want you can use @Paul_Danyliuk one’s that save you a column using the already stored info about time :slight_smile:

Basically you put the text into the first table and then you press the button, be careful to set the text of the table before clicking the button, if you don’t the field will be empty!

Have fun with this example :slight_smile:

As I said, don’t use the Now() function in the canvas or as a column formula — it changes.

Use thisRow.Created(). Yes, even in the canvas, outside of the table.

Hi @Mario,

:bulb: Dependig to your needs, just today(), and you will get only the date

@Paul_Danyliuk actually the Now() formula can be totally eliminated in the canvas, it should be present just in the button :sweat_smile:
And it can be preferred over today() if multiple notes are added per day @Jean_Pierre_Traets, then maybe the one that are made in the same day can be grouped in the table below :smiley:
For sure the date can also be extrapolated but in case of export (like copy and paste in another doc) those data will be deleted and journal will turn into notes!

Here’s what I meant by the hack: (67)

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@Paul_Danyliuk didn’t know that canvas was interpreted as “row”, cool!!!
But i think that having those data in a table could be more useful, so for example adding stars, or heart, or other tag that can filtered after :smiley:
Or other users, or link to something or images ecc…
Anyway cool trick! :smiley:

It’s not interpreted as row. That’s why I say it’s a hack. As I said in my first comment, for some reason thisTable and thisRow right on canvas seem to create some sort of a fake table.

It doesn’t count towards the objects count for free docs, has one row and one column (result of the function, .Created(), .CreatedBy() etc) :man_shrugging:

I’m wondering if Codans themselves know anything about this. @Krunal_Sheth @BenLee

Thanks for the example @Mario , but I don’t want to use a table because it takes away from my ability to add formatting such as bullets and images in the journal entry. Great example though.

@Joe_Wolin you could save also those! :slight_smile:
In other column, so in this way you can have all other type of information organized :slight_smile:
So if you want to later view those data you can in many many ways, some example:

  • Filter based on date
  • Filter based on friend who was there
  • Filter based on how good was the launch that day
  • Filter about place where you were
  • or filter just entry with photos made in x place (like greece last year)

Possibilities are limitless! You can then display those information as you prefer more, with all the formatting tools (not so many let’s be honest) that coda have :slight_smile:

You could also use this journal with multiple users in that way, and i think that also bullet list are supported in table :slight_smile:

Anyway those are just wild suggestion, knowing what you have to do could make those meaningless :slight_smile:

Happy to help :slight_smile:

For the record, you can have bullets and images in table cells. Only thing you can’t have is write formulas within the cell text. But otherwise all formatting is supported there.

I know this may sound strange from a Coda aficionado and “community champion”, but perhaps Notion would be a better choice for your journaling needs? Unless there’s something specific you need that only Coda can support (although I cannot think of anything not-table-related that Coda does better atm than Notion)


Another great hack by @Paul_Danyliuk :grinning:

Totally agree with that (including the “Coda aficionado” part).
Although I would strongly recommend RoamResearch for that purpose instead of Notion

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When the discussion turns to Notion and Roam Research, I am always eager to get involved :)!!

I have spent months going between Notion and Coda, and I for one think Notion does little better than Coda. I gave up on Notion as an app for my team as the limitations were so great around things like notifications, limits in table view (you can’t see rich text unless you open a row), and importantly for my use case, traceability across “blocks” when relating to others.

This last point is particular relevant to both the comparison with Coda, and new-kid-on-the-block Roam. Notion has even greater limits around relating blocks across the app in free canvas that Coda. With Coda, you can create a button and show relations between two rows at least, although this requires work. In Notion, you just move your blocks around by using “change to,” and before you know it you can lose track of bunches of content. For free form journaling and referencing, I think this is a big drawback. In fact I went back to Evernote after trying hard with Notion. Another problem with Notion for me was you can’t simply write a few paragraphs of text - every single line practically is a “block.”

Roam has shown some great implementation however of the ability to create in a “network” fashion, and I think this is extremely relevant to Coda, given Coda’s focus on “making.” I would really like a few more features around reciprocal linking in Coda to kind of “close the loop” on what we already have in Coda with strong lookups, and @mentioning allowing quick reference to a row, but sadly only one-directional at the moment. Roam shows the potential and power of creating when you can see your content in various contexts as its created. In my use case for Coda as an all-purpose team management app, I have already seen great benefit to being able to relate stuff like CRM with Projects, Product with Feature Components, and a host of other items that typically can’t easily interact because teams have this stuff in different apps that can’t relate to each other at all. It’s a huge help in prioritization, planning, and even retrospectives too, since you can build notes around work and then create a sort of company log of decisions, repeat discussions around items that fester in a backlog, and so forth.

I’m glad to see talk here about Coda pushing forward on some of this reciprocal linking here:

I have been learning more about Roam and really think it shows the potential of getting reciprocal linking live in Coda. I will shamelessly yet again plug my request for that!

Always hopeful my comments are useful, and not just chatter! Speak with you all again shortly!