This is a QoL-request, and I love me some QoL-updates!
While I'm developing I often need the output of a workflow as input for the next phase of my development. For example: an API run returns job location, status, and authentication ids. I want to use these in a new workflow to start experimenting what'll work best. Because of the experimenting part, I always do this in a new workflow and not cache and continue in my main flow.
Writing a temporary output file always feels like unnescesary steps, and tbh I don't want to write a file for a step that'll be gone before it reaches production. Esp if there is sensitive information in it.
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.
We have 'CountDistinct' and 'Concatenate' options within Summarize tool.
But 'Concatenate' displays all the instances of value for a Grouped field, this might include lot of duplicates.
It would be great to have an option like 'ConcatDistinct'.
For example -
Group by 'Branch' and 'ConcatDistinct' Customer should result as Figure 1 instead of Figure 2 -
While this is achievable in different ways currently with a set of tools, but it gets tedious when number of fields is large from which distinct values are to be captured.
As each version of Alteryx is rolled out, it would be much easier for our users and admin team to validate the new version, if Alteryx allowed parallel installs of many different versions of the software.
So - our team is currently on 11.3 - if we could roll out 11.5 in parallel then we could very easily allow users to revert to 11.3 if there are issues, or else remove 11.3 after 2-3 weeks if no issues.
The same goes for versions which are in BETA.
This would be a huge help!
When creating a workflow I generally open a "TEMPLATE" first and then immediately save it to the "NEW WORKFLOW NAME". My template includes all my preferences that aren't set naturally within the user settings and won't get RESET by them either. It has a comment box and containers as well as logos and copyrights. It would be nice to have ready access to this feature. Maybe others have standards that they want applied to all users and their workflows too.
Currently it's possible to use the Output tool to output to either a sheet, a place in a sheet or a named range in Excel, but it is not possible to output to a preformatted excel table - it would be really good if the output tool had an option to output to [Table1] in an Excel workbook for example. This enhancement would be incredibly helpful for reporting purposes.
I know there have been a few threads about a Dark / Night Theme in the past but I think it is worth looking at this again as a much larger cohort of Alteryx Designer users are now in a work from home environment we aren't all in super well lit offices anymore.
Even with my Windows / Display settings adjusted Designer is just so bright.
This one feels like a quick / easy win.
We frequently have issues where users report slowness from an Alteryx installation on a particular machine; or where a specific tool or package fails to install correctly.
For our admin teams - this becomes a debugging exercise to go through different permutations to understand the cause - and if this is escallated to Alteryx Support, this becomes even tougher.
Could we think about including a basic "Self Diagnostic" in to Alteryx which runs through the basic functionalities of Alteryx with some basic timings; checks that Python is working correctly; checks the memory allocation and temporary disk space - and then either persists this to disk and/or sends to a central environment for analysis?
Given a large deployed environment like ours (over 10 000 seats deployed) - self-checkout-telemetry like this would provide the central team with massive increase in their ability to manage the deployed base; and at the same time signficantly reduce the time to resolve support issues.
Having just participated in weekly challenge 293 there is a requirement to output a table with certain conditional row colours. However the configuration is based on rgb colour codes, whereas the desired output displays the colours using hex codes. 95% of the development time on this challenge was to get matching colour formatting, so being able to insert hex codes would improve this experience.
Taking inspiration how you work with Jupyter notebooks and use the notebook to show your workings, wouldn't it be great if you could document your workflows directly on the canvas more in a notebook style.
I think this essentially can be summarised down into two features:
1) Markdown functionality in the comment tool
2) Ability to import results from IRG and / or browse tool directly into the canvas.
I have mocked up a version of what this could look like in the screenshot below.
Overall I think it would improve the experience of documenting workflows as you can show your workings in-line while building the workflow. Plus it solves the debate around team vertical vs team horizontal as you build using both!
When using an OUTPUT tool, you can currently only output to one (1) format. My idea is to allow for a checkbox to create a YXDB file format when you output to another format. In many instances a copy of the CSV data in YXDB file format is needed. Creating another output requires another tool with nearly identical information. This is my backup copy to what I sent the customer is an example.
Similar to how the Join tool allows to "Select all Left" or "Select all Right" I'd like to see the Append Fields tool have an option to select all source or select all target. Same for deselect.
Similar to https://community.alteryx.com/t5/Alteryx-Designer-Ideas/Custom-Functions-in-AMP/idc-p/845446#M16381, it would be great to have AMP allow for custom C++ functions. Custom XML functions were added in 21.1 for AMP, so custom C++ functions would be the natural next step!
The Formula Tool does a good job of autocompleting expressions (for example an open square bracket will show you variables in your dataset), as well as syntax highlighting (coloring variables, keywords, strings, etc).
I propose having this feature available in all tools that use the expression editor, particularly common ones such as the Multi-Row Formula Tool and the Multi-Field Formula Tool.
This parity across tools would provide a more consistent experience for the user and increase one's productivity using these tools. It's incredibly helpful for beginners and seasoned Alteryx users alike and should be available wherever possible.
Would love to see an option to disable a specific Output tool (rather than the global "Disable All Tools that Write Output" option). I'm envisioning the inverse of the Email tool, where there is a checkbox to enable Email... rather, the Output tool could have a check box that would disable that output (and ONLY that output), similar/consistent with the "Disable All Tools" function. A "Disable This Output" check box. The benefits would be a quick way to make sure not to overwrite something in one output (but still getting all the good content in all the other outputs) rather than having to go through the multiple clicks of adding to a container and then disabling the container. Could have benefits for connecting with Action tools/interface toggles as well. It would likely need to contain the same/similar formatting in Designer to indicate it has been disabled, though maybe a slightly different color so you could tell it was disabled differently?
(On a similar vein, would love to take this opportunity to bring up my favorite idea-that-has-not-been-implemented-yet-that-would-love-your-vote-and-attention, implementing a Warning that outputs are disabled when posting to Gallery...)
Currently if I drag a tool onto the canvas and it has multiple input anchors, Alteryx will try to connect to the first input anchor from the output of the nearest tool I am hovering near.
However the improvement I would like to see is where there are specific tools which are required to go into each input that it 'intelligently' connects to the correct input, for example on the gif below I have a PDF input and PDF template tool (pre-computer vision), and when I bring the image to text tool in, it will try and connect the output of the template tool into the D input anchor, when the correct input is the T anchor. What this leads to is me having to delete a connection and then re-wiring which slows down the development time.
A very useful and common function
Return the first non-null value in a list:
It would be ever so helpful and save a couple extra steps if a count distinct option could be added to the crosstab tool. Seems like a slam dunk since plain ole 'count' is already a choice.
The Dynamic Input will not accept inputs with different record layouts. The "brute force" solution is to use a standard Input tool for each file separately and then combine them with a Union Tool. The Union Tool accepts files with different record layouts and issues warnings. Please enhance the Dynamic Input tool (or, perhaps, add a new tool) that combines the Dynamic Input functionality with a more laid-back, inclusive Union tool approach. Thank you.
It would be very helpful to have a search box for field names in the summary tool, I think it would help decrease errors by selecting fields by mistake with similar names and will help gain a couple of seconds while looking around for a specific field, particularly with datasets with a lots of them.
Standard In-DB connection configuration for PostgreSQL / Greenplum makes "Datastream-In" In-DB tool to load data line by line instead of using Bulk mode.
As a result, loading data in a In-DB stream is very slow.
100 000 lines are sent to Greenplum using a "Datastream-in" In-DB tool.
This is a demo workflow, the In-DB stream could be more complex and not replaceable by an Output Data In-Memory.
Load time : 11 minutes.
It's slow and spam the database with insert for each lines.
However, there is a workaround.
We can configure a In-Memory connection using the bulk mode :
And paste the connection string to the "write" tab of our In-DB Connection :
Load time : 24 seconds.
It's fast as it uses the Bulk mode.
This workaround has been validated by Greenplum team but not by Alteryx support team.
Could you please support this workaround ?
Tested on version 2021.3.3.63061
Here's a reason to get excited about amp! Create a runtime setting that gets Alteryx working even faster.
when you configure a file input you see 100 records. Imagine the delight that after you run your workflows all input tools are automatically cached. You run so much faster.
now think of the absolute delight that even before you run the workflows that a configured input tool causes a background read off the input data. Whether it is a new workflow or an opened existing flow that reading can start ahead of the time button.
what do you think 🤔?
I use the skip 1st N rows in almost all my workflows and find that I have unwanted rows at the bottom of my data a lot and will end up having to sort the data before being able to skip the 1st N rows. It would be a lot easier to just skip the last N rows instead.
Currently I find myself always wanting to replace the DateTime field with a string or visa verse.
It would be nice to have a radio button to pick whether to append the parsed field to replace the current field with the parsed field.
I understand that all you need is a select tool after, this would be a nice QoL change especially where the field may be dynamically updated.
In order to make it easier to find workflow logs and be able to analyze them we would suggest some changes:
This would facilitate when trying to find the job logs.
To facilitate reading the log we would suggest the following changes:
For the example of current and suggested log:
Please consult the document in attachment.
In the suggested format the log would be [TIMESTAMP] [ERRORLEVEL] [ELAPSEDTIME] [MESSAGE]