Table as layout vs. data store

Is there a way to insert a table on a Coda Page that is just used for layout purposes, i.e. like you can do in a Word/Google Doc?

Maybe “grid” is a better word to use here to catch my meaning. I’d like to layout, say, a 2x2 grid and inside each cell I may put some text or may use a formula to pull some data / do some calculations / etc. from other Coda Tables/Views.

Is this possible somehow?

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It would be nice to have a dumb table purely for layout purposes, along with a columns component for sure.

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No, this isn’t really possible in the way that you describe. I might argue that there’s a reason this isn’t the case, but it depends on what you’re trying to do.

Could you share an example of what you want and a doc with the relevant information? Even if you want to share a google doc with the kind of layout you want that would help me turn your Coda doc into what you’re looking for.

Thanks for the offer @Connor_McCormick .

Basically, I want to layout a 2x2 grid on a page so that I can position some progress bars (Rectangle()'s that are sized based on a formula) as well as some supporting numbers (calculated by formulas) that are underneath them.

Right now I have to position them using spaces to artificially push something over the the right of something else (wish there were tab stops for that), or just let them go vertically down the page.

Again, this is a grid for layout purposes, but something you would have naturally used a table in a GDoc or Word Doc to serve a similar purpose.

I’d love to hear your argument as to why something like this wouldn’t exist though. I think it would help me understand the Coda design philosophy as it relates to things like this.

It seems like one approach may be for me to use this hack…

Thanks!

Let’s try to build what you’re looking for.

Is there any possibility you could share your doc, or a safe version of your doc?

RE Design Philosophy
I can only speculate, but I think that in general Coda is going for a “pick from a list of predefined table layouts” design approach rather than a “use a full blown specification language to design your page layouts”.

Obviously, your data could be exported to another page with some fancy CSS formatting and then embedded back into your Coda doc. But CSS, etc have much steeper learning curves.

I think you might be overthinking it @Connor_McCormick .

Open a Google Doc.
Insert a 2x2 Table.
Put “A” in cell (1,1).
Put “B” in cell (1,2)
Put “C” in cell (2,1)
Put “D” in cell (2,2)

That’s a table in the layout sense, not in the database sense.

Now I want to do the same thing on a Coda Page. :slight_smile:

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Hi @Thomas_Robbs1 ,
I agree with you.
It’s what I called Grid Layout.

I think that would be useful to build up dashboards pages.

Let me know your thoughts.

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I agree with the direction of your thinking @Federico_Stefanato - thanks for sharing your link. I cross-referenced it back to here as well because I think there’s a simple layer of things that are missing from Coda, like a table/grid for Page layout purposes.

Another example would be Tab Stops, but I can see how those sorts of things might be a little messy to introduce when Pages can be presented on Mobile clients with such ease and tab-stops would start to mess with how that presents, I’d imagine.

However, these Page Layout components can be very helpful and for those coming from GDocs / Office, etc. worlds, Coda feels incomplete when they hit these kinds of limitations. It shows more emphasis on the “database” concept - like Microsoft Access Reports of times past. For the non-technical folks I’ve worked with, this is enough of a mental roadblock that they’d be more apt to just revert back to managing documents in their current form.

Thanks again @Federico_Stefanato for linking me over to your community request. Hopefully we can revive some traction on this idea.

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I get it I get it. I’m trying to solve it for you using the existing tools Coda has. I’ve made many similar things with tables.

If we find they are insufficient then we’ve got a good usecase for Grids to share with the Coda team.