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Alteryx Designer Ideas

Share your Designer product ideas - we're listening!

Can we add some of the CReW tools and JDunkerly formulae to the core product?

 

 

Hi there,

 

Adam ( @AdamR ), Mark ( @MarqueeCrew) and many others have done a great job in putting together super helpful add-in macros in the CREW pack - and James ( @jdunkerley79 ) has really done an incredible job of filling in some gaps in a very useful way in the formula tools.

 

Would be possible to include a subset of these in the core product as part of the next release?

I'm thinking of (but others will chime in here to vote for their favourite):

- Unique only tool (CReW)

- Field Sort (CReW)

- Wildcard XLSX input (CReW) - this would eliminate a whole category of user queries on the discussion boards

- Runner (CReW - although this may have issues with licensing since many people don't have command line permission - Alteryx does really need the ability to do chained dependancy flows in a more smooth way.

- Date Utils (JDunkerly) - all of James's Date utils - again, these would immediately solve many of the support questions asked on the discussion forum

 

I think that these would really add richness & functionality to the core product, and at the same time get ahead of many of the more common queries raised by users.   I guess the only question is whether the authors would have any objection?

 

Thank you

Sean

9 Comments
Alteryx Alumni (Retired)
Status changed to: Accepted

Thanks so much for the feedback. I know the process of sharing and downloading tools created by other users needs some improvement. We're working on some ways to make it easier for people to develop their own tools and easily share those tools with other users. You'll see this coming in stages beginning with an HTML JavaScript SDK later this year. 

Nebula
Nebula

Thank you for coming back on this @RachelW,

 

It really is great that we're looking at making it easier to share tools (especially if we can do this in the corporate locked-down environment), and I'm very excited to hear more about this.  

 

For this idea specifically - I'm hoping that several of the CREW macros and JDunkerly formulae cease to be external or user developed tools, and can be brought into the main product as additional core features.  

Is this something that the team is looking at - bringing super content provided by users into the main code-thread of the shipping product?

 

 

Alteryx Alumni (Retired)

Exactly how we will help people share their tools and used shared tools is still under consideration. 

Bolide

Hi @RachelW! I think @SeanAdams is saying that having a better way to share and use user-created tools is NOT what this idea is asking for. There are several user-created tools/formulas/features that fill in gaps in the Alteryx software. These "add-on" items would be even more valuable to all Alteryx customers if they were made part of the core product. Here's a list of qualities that tools/features in the core product have that external, user-created ones do not:

 

  1. Tools/features in the core product have full support
    • When something goes wrong in the core product, Alteryx has an army of employees to fix it and publish a new release. If something goes wrong in an add-on tool/features, one or two people are able to commit only a fraction of their time to address the issue. I'm sure many customers wish Alteryx was committing more resources to solving some of the complications that have come up with the Runner macros.
  2. Tools/features in the core product are more efficient
    • Macros inherently bring some inefficiencies with them. For example, I bet Alteryx could improve the Unique tool to give it the option to output like the CReW Only Unique tool does, but make it such that it processes data faster than the Only Unique macro can.
  3. Tools/features in the core product have documentation and training
    • I can't learn the CReW macros or JDunkerly formulas from the Training section on the Community or the Help files in the same way as other tools.
  4. Tools/features in the core product are more stable
    • A new or edited core product feature is more likely to be compatible with the rest of Alteryx and fully vetted before release compared to a user-created add-on.
  5. If a tool/feature is not in the core product, it cannot be used as a selling-point for Alteryx
    • Just yesterday in the "4 Ways Spatial Analytics Can Optimize Your Business Decisions" webinar, someone asked if Alteryx could run workflows in succession automatically. While the answer is yes, Alteryx does not have a good built-in solution (hence why the Runner CReW macros were created). I don't think new customers will be excited to learn that while they can run workflows in succession with Alteryx, but the best way to do it involves downloading an unsupported side-package with no official training or documentation to help you learn how to use it.
    • Also, I know the CReW macros usually have their own presentation at Inspire. If CReW is being promoted at Inspire by Alteryx staff, customers may expect full support.
    • Lastly, I wonder if the industry even considers the value-add of user-created tools when evaluating Alteryx against other software. Companies and rating bodies like Gartner probably focus on the core product only.

In summary, Alteryx can improve how user-created work is shared and/or they can add this work to the core product. While the later may be harder, it is definitely the better option for user-created work that addresses wide-spread needs that the core Alteryx product cannot address.

 

Thanks for listening!

 

Nebula
Nebula

Spot on!

 

User created content is great to empower, and innovate but at some point it is well proved and is clearly needed in the core product with all the support and structure that entails.

Alteryx Partner

I'll add two more point to @DultonM's excellent list:

 

6. Ease of install. because the tools & functions would be part of the core package. A quick example: I installed James Dunkerley's Omnibus toolset the other day and ran into a series of permissions errors that were not documented and make it harder for me to take advantage of James's efforts. If these (amazingly useful) features could be rolled into the core product then they'd get to take advantage of Alteryx's core installation framework and not run into these issues. I'm an itinerant open source tool developer myself and users running into installation issues due to unanticipated configurations is the largest source of support questions.

 

7. Allowed install. This is an extension of #5. I've worked with multiple clients whose IT environment is such that they will not allow installs of any open-source software whatsoever and that makes tools like the CReW macros useless.

 

Jonathan

 

 

Alteryx Certified Partner
Alteryx Certified Partner

+1. Would be a great addition to alteryx especially the challenges around deployment of different packages in an enterprise IT enviroment

Alteryx Certified Partner

 The CReW macros (specifically the runner, conditional runner, and log parse tools) are paramount when implementing an ETL solution for clients. I couldn't do my job without them. I hope to see them soon in the main product.

I agree!


@SeanAdams wrote:

 

 

Hi there,

 

Adam ( @AdamR ), Mark ( @MarqueeCrew) and many others have done a great job in putting together super helpful add-in macros in the CREW pack - and James ( @jdunkerley79 ) has really done an incredible job of filling in some gaps in a very useful way in the formula tools.

 

Would be possible to include a subset of these in the core product as part of the next release?

I'm thinking of (but others will chime in here to vote for their favourite):

- Unique only tool (CReW)

- Field Sort (CReW)

- Wildcard XLSX input (CReW) - this would eliminate a whole category of user queries on the discussion boards

- Runner (CReW - although this may have issues with licensing since many people don't have command line permission - Alteryx does really need the ability to do chained dependancy flows in a more smooth way.

- Date Utils (JDunkerly) - all of James's Date utils - again, these would immediately solve many of the support questions asked on the discussion forum

 

I think that these would really add richness & functionality to the core product, and at the same time get ahead of many of the more common queries raised by users.   I guess the only question is whether the authors would have any objection?

 

Thank you

Sean