We have discussed on several occasions and in different forums, about the importance of having or providing Alteryx with order of execution control, conditional executions, design patterns and even orchestration.
I presented this idea some time ago, but someone asked me if it was posted, and since it was not, I’m putting it here so you can give some feedback on it.
The basic concept behind this idea is to allow us (users) to have:
This approach involves some functionalities that are already within the product (like exploiting Filtering logic, loading & saving, caching, blocking among others), exposed within a Tool Container with enhanced attributes, like this example:
The approach is to extend Tool Container’s attributes.
This proposition uses actual functionalities we already have in Designer.
So, basically, the Tool Container gets ‘superpowers’, with the addition of some capabilities like: Accepting input data, saving the contents within the container (to create a design pattern, or very commonly used sequence of tools chained together), output data, run the contents of the tools included in the container, etc.), plus a configuration screen like:
This should end a brief introduction to the idea, but taking it a little further, it will allow even to have something like an Orchestration layout, where the users can drag and drop containers or patterns and orchestrate them in a solution, like we can do with the Visual Layout Tool or the Interactive Chart tool:
I'm looking forward to hear what you think.
This has probably been mentioned before, but in case it hasn't....
Right now, if the dynamic input tool skips a file (which it often does!) it just appears as a warning and continues processing. Whilst this is still useful to continue processing, could it be built as an option in the tool to select a 'error if files are skipped'?
Right now it is either easy to miss this is happening, or in production / on server you may want this process to be stopped.
I surprisingly couldn't find this anywhere else as I know it's been discussed in person on many occasions.
Basically the Formula tool needs to be smarter in many ways, but this particular post focuses on the Data Type component.
The formula tool, should not always default to V_String as the data type when entering data or a formula into the formula tool, it should look at the data type and estimate the most likely option.
I know there are times where the logical type might not be consistent in all fields, but the Data Preview and the Function of the formula should be used to determine the most likely option.
E.G. If I type a number or a date directly into the formula tool, then Alteryx should be smart enough to change the data type from the standard V_String to Int, Double or date.
This is an extension to the ideas posted here:
I often need to create a record ID that automatically increments but grouped by a specific field. I currently do it using the Multi-Row Formula tool doing [Field-1:ID]+1 because there is no group by option in the Record ID tool.
Also, sometimes I need to start at 0 but the Multi-Row Formula tool doesn't allow this so I have to use a Formula tool right after to subtract 1.
So adding a group by option to the Record ID tool would allow the user not to use the multi-row formula to do this and to start at any value wanted.
Love the new updates to the Browse tool in 2019.2! However, if you choose the option Open results in new window, which I do often so I can see my whole dataset, the search/filter/sort functionality goes away. Would be great if that new functionality also worked in the new window. Thanks!
Can't wait for the new base maps!
In-app screens, lot of space is wasted because components/tools can just be stacked one below the other.
It would great if we could also insert them horizontally.
Tags : screen, app, macro, layout, tools, UI
Having the open / close ( expand / collapse ) button for the tool container in lhe top right corner implies that everytime a big container is expanded, to close it the user has to move the pointer to its new position, which sometimes mean scrolling / zooming out and then zooming in to locate it.
I suggest to locate that button in the top left corner by the side of the enable/disable switch or even a double click mechanism for open/close, which would enable to user to open, see what is inside the container, and close it without moving the mouse to locate the new location of the button.
Can we set our own Comment tool default preferences? - For me I want to set the text alignment to be "Center" by default, currently it's always "TopCenter" when I open it.
When we create new workflows, we like to have them in our company template, to stnadardise documentation. This makes it easier for a supervisor to review, and for a colleague to pick up the workflow and understand what is going on. For instance, we have all data input on the left, and all error checks and workflow validation on the right, and a section at the top with the workflow name, project name, purpose etc. We have a workflow that we use as a template with containers, boxes and images all in the appropriate places
It would be great if there was an option to select a workflow as a template. When a new workflow is opened, it would load this template rather than having a blank canvas.
I would like to see a "tool" that you can use as an off-screen connection (pair) between data anchors. Currently, you can create "wireless" connections between anchors. This essentially helps, but isn't friendly if you add/modify contents between points A & B. It also doesn't aid in documentation of the workflow.
If by comparison, I put a connection tool on at point A it would be great to see it annotate itself with the incoming Tool ID and when I connect it to the paired point B, it would similarly explain the incoming tool id onto that point too.
I currently use a SELECT tool to explain visually that this data is being used elsewhere. I create a wireless connection to the receiving data (could be multiple) and document the source. The performance of the workflow may be slowed by these select tools.
I'm very open to other ideas or reformats of this proposal. I don't think that it is going to change the world, but it would help me with my OCD.
I often search for a tool on the canvas using control find and the tool number. If the tool is already in the visible pane, Alteryx highlights the tool with a faint dotted box. The problem is that I often have hundreds of tools that are visible and I have to constantly hunt around the canvas to locate the highlighted tool. Please update the control find settings so that when you use control find, Alteryx centers the current view on that exact tool. That way your eye can scan the middle of the canvas and locate the tool every time without this wasted effort searching for the tool outline.
Can you put a check box on the container title bar to make it easier to enable/disable containers in the process window? And can you make the minimize/maximize option for a conatiner a separate option from enable/disable?
Maybe they get bigger when you hover, so its easier to grab? Thanks 🙂
It would be great if it were easier to add a comment tool to the canvas. As I think about what my workflows are lacking, it's good documentation. My biggest hurdle...is myself. I am simply too lazy to stop what I'm doing and add comment tools. What if you could either 1) double click on the canvas and it brings in a comment tool where I can start writing comments or 2) add a Keyboard short cut in order to add a comment tool (control + shift + C perhaps)? Either of these would help me build better documented workflows.
When we have too many steps in a workflow, it is mandatory to use container to represent better business flow. It can collapse many steps to represent one business flow.
But, when we open collapsed tool container, workflow canvas not resizing to give space for tool container, it overlap on existing tools.
It is better to resize workflow canvas when we collapse or resize tool containers.
Add the option to flip comment boxes, so they can be read down-up, instead of left-right... (see below in red, how it looks and how it could be).
I love using containers, but depending on how I am moving around the workflows or trackpad (when traveling) I find it hard to navigate quickly getting a container on the canvas between either add a container from the tool palette or having to highlight the tools and right-click for menu navigation to add the container. This ranks up there with the hotkeys for aligning the tools which make for quick work of making the workflow look organized and presentable.
I am currently using alteryx to generate pdf reports and noticed there is no option to have multiple row headers. In my line of work i cant skip this as the end users insist on having it like they have always had it.
I definitely think this should be available as many of us like replicate canned reports which are otherwise in excel and hence see the need for such an option.
The following might give an example of the multi row header,
Also the ability to merge certain columns to create the above effect should be available.
We are working on building out training content in a story mode and would like to have short snippets playing in a loop for people to see embedded in the workflow. Currently you can add a .gif to a comment background and it will provide a still image on the worklfow itself but functions as a gif in the configuration display. The interesting part is when you are running the workflow the .gif works and then it pauses it when the workflow has completed!
*This is an idea from @sayuri from the Portuguese Community*
So while working through a workflow that takes up a bunch of canvas space, I find myself jumping between two points, one at the beginning and one at the end. Every time I need to jump to the other point, I have to zoom out and scroll over and down and then zoom back in.
What if there was a tool that you could drop on the canvas as a "point of Interest" that if you select it (perhaps) on some other part of the interface, takes you right to that spot in the workflow. I know that currently you can look up tools and it will take you to the location of the tool, but it can be difficult when you are jumping around 4 or 5 different spots to remember which tool number is which.
I would use this all the time!
Just a thought
When looking at a complex canvas - my first instinct is to group this into sub-modules (e.g. "/load Data"; "clean data") to make this simpler to understand.
We mostly do this through the use of Containers.
However - it would be more useful if you could then take an entire container and convert this to a macro. This would be very similar to the way that Visual Studio allows you to take a block of code and convert it to a sub-procedure.
This would be a super-quick way to allow people to make canvasses more maintainable and easier to understand and test!
When documentin alteryx screen I sometimes hit printscreen and need to paste important matters to Comment tool...
But there is no paste from clipboard 😞
I suggest adding a minor icon that enables not only reading from png but pasting a screen or other image copied directly from memory...
For I need the following setting so I printscreen and capture as is;
Then put that into a PNG or JPG file using paint. And then prepare a comment box with that image in the background...
Speed up canvas edits - The Create/Remove Space Tool
Usually day two of working with a canvas I realize that I have been a fool, and I come up with a significantly more elegant or simple solution. Moving all of the containers or tools to fit my slick new container is cumbersome and slow. I've created a GIF of a feature several tools have which allows the user to easily move and arrange items on the canvas.
Open source tool used in demo: bpmnJs
This should be a simple addition:
In the same way that many default tools automatically generate annotations when they are dropped into the workflow, or their configurations are modified, there should be a way to add custom annotations for custom made macros.
Today I have some workflows which have certain steps that occur after files are output. I have these set up inside of Tool Containers so that I can easily enable/disable them as I am working if I do not want to produce output for this particular run. However, sometimes if I need to troubleshoot on a workflow that I haven't worked on for awhile, I can neglect to disable these, which can cause errors. This is usually harmless, but annoying.
Having two more options on Tool Containers could really help to improve this!
Disable When Browse Tools Disabled would be useful for any analysis/debugging steps that I only want to run when I am browsing to find data, but should not run otherwise.
Disable When Output Disabled would be really useful to ensure that these tools are turned off alongside the "Disable all tools that write output" option in Workflow-Configuration-Runtime.
This would save me a lot of unnecessary error messages and moments of panic, and would make these types of workflows easier for other users to debug without extensive notes.