Viewing tables in different ways

I was thinking of migrating from Notion to Coda because Notion doesn’t let me share top level workspaces to clients and members unless they are part of my team.

Coda seemed like a good alternative, but when I replicate my task management template in Coda, the views seem odd.

When I use tables for task management in other tools like Airtable and Notion, I create tons of views. I have views for:

*by due date
*by who it is assigned to
*by project
*by category and so on

In Notion or Airtable, I am just looking at the same data, just sorted differently with the view. But in Coda, it seems to create “mirror” of the data, then drop a copy of the table with the new view into the document. So now I end up with a weird document with multiple copies of the same table instead of just a fast way of changing how I view the data.

It this right? Am I missing something here? Is there a way to create views without mirroring and replicating the table 5 times for 5 different views?

Dear @Garland_Coulson_Captain_Time,

Coda has two options:

As you already found out, by creating views (mirror of main table) at same section or in different sections depending on the use case

The :gem: is in the controls in combination with the table filter, so that by selecting ( a combination) of controls you will be able to filter the set of data according your needs.

This will give you a powerful tool to make the view dynamic to your scenario, that could show you a different perspective of the underlaying data.

I am on the move, not able to share a good sample, but in templates and this community are several good samples available

Don’t give up, you will be amazed :handshake:

This video should help

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I watched the video. The player on the video has no way to rewind or fast forward. I had to continually reload it to get back to the part I was trying to follow.

I tried to follow the procedure by creating the control, add the current value to the document, then it says to set a filter. But the filter doesn’t seem to connect to the control in any way. The instructions seem to be missing a step.

It looks like I have to create multiple formulas just to get a single view.

This is far too complex. Notion has views functionality built right into it and I can create 10 or so different views in just a few minutes.

I don’t get why you say the video has no controls. It’s just like a regular embedded youtube video.
Still here is the direct link on YT if it works better for you.

The control connects to the filter using the name you give to the control itself and then using it in the filter formula.

I did find the controls for the video. The problem was my extended ultrawide screen. For some reason, it was showing the video with the bottom cut off. When I resized the screen, that helped.

I did finally manage to make the controls connect to the filters - there are no choosing options to do this, I had to write formulas which is not intuitive.

Controls are weird approaches to this. Why should I have to enter all the selectable items when the Coda field already knows this? If I have 15 selections from the drop-down, this is going to add a lot of time.

And instead of having a view name on the control such as “View by Project” it just says Blank until you choose from the menu. I currently have 10 different views on my template. So it looks like I will need 10 different controls for these 10 views? Will they all just say blank unless I choose something - this gets messy looking very fast.

Hi @Garland_Coulson_Captain_Time, great to see you in the community! Looking at the previous answers to your question, you’re right in thinking that controls may not be the optimal building block to do what you are trying to do. Using controls to filter a table works well when you want your teammate or client to have the ability to control the data being displayed. However, in other workflows the maker of the doc just wants to set up the views him or herself and not give their teammate the ability to filter the view.

In the doc below, “Option 1” is the current solution described where you use the control to filter the view of the Tasks table (notice how I tucked that “master” table away in the “Data” section which is a common practice in Coda docs). The control in Option 1 is great but it’s a bit limiting. To make this more powerful you might add in another 1-2 controls to give the end user the ability to filter by Due Date and/or Assignee.

“Option 2” is more common in docs that I see day to day. Each of those 3 views have a custom filter so that if the end user really wanted to filter the view to something else, they could edit the formula in the filter. With most teams that report on task statuses, the maker of the doc will just set up these views so that his or her teammates can quickly see the tasks that are assigned to them, tasks that are of a certain status, etc.

Creating multiple views of a table vs. being able to select the “view” directly in a table (in Notion or Airtable) comes down to a personal preference. I like having my “master” table separate from my views so that I can control what the end user sees in the view, and with our upcoming locking feature you’ll be able to prevent the end user from editing data in the view as well.

@Al_Chen_Coda Thank you for your insights.
I would add that option 2 with multiple views on the same page is more useful when filtered tables are small.
If filtered tables are still huge, option 1 might be more convenient.

Actually another thing that would be great is an on/off switch for each filter in a table’s filter panel. Currently there is a trash can but I caught myself several times thinking it would be great to just turn the filters on/off cause that would prevent me from rewriting those each time I need them.

What do you think ?

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That’s a good point @Rolando_Guerrieri. I just edited the doc with an “Option 3” that shows you how you could toggle the filters on and off using a control. The values for the filter are stored in the “Filters” table. This may not be the most optimal way of setting up your filters, but it gives you a more visual way of deciding what to filter in your views.

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Thanks Al,

Krunal from your office reached out to me and we had a chat online. He was also suggesting I use various sections as views instead of viewing it all in a single section.

I will work with this for a bit and see if that works better for my layout.

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