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Difference between Input Connector and Lightning Bolt Anchor with interface tools

8 - Asteroid

Could someone explain in layman's terms what the difference between the input connector (the magnifying glass) and the lightning bolt anchor is with the interface tools?

Trying to understand this a little bit more, thanks!

Alteryx Alumni (Retired)

Hi @gwiz  


The lightning bolt and 'Q' connector relay information and tell an application or workflow tool how to change based on what a user tells you what to do.


The 'Q' anchor accepts zero to many input user values. It is the Question Anchor. It is Black or White depending on if it is an input or output. It accepts output connections from interface tools with the same icon. It is the value from the incoming tool that will be applied to the Action and sent to update the downstream tool.


The Lightning Bolt is most common. Think Zap / Action / Change. The connection between the lightning anchors contains the user's value from the interface tool and the method of how it will update the connected workflow tool with that value.


Then there is the black diamond anchor which only accepts incoming connections from the conditional tool.


So think Q as the input that's going to change the value itself and lightning as the method of how it will update the workflow.


That is my understanding at least...Hope that this helps.