We’ve rebuilt the front end of the Filter tool for the 2018.1 release. It should feel familiar if you have used the previous Filter tool and the Formula tool released last year. In the basic filter you still have an option to select a column, an operator, and an operand.
In this example, I am using the basic filter to find all users in New Zealand.
When we released Formula last year, you gave us feedback that the new expression editor with autocomplete text suggestions helped you work faster and more efficiently. And then you asked when we’d add the expression editor to the custom filter. We listened. Check it out!
Here I’m looking for users with last names between Lewis and Smith.
Expression Editor Tip: Did you know that you can save expressions and use them for later as well as see recently used expressions within our expression editor? This is helpful if you write the same expression in multiple workflows are write the same expression across multiple tools.
Date filtering functionality and deprecation of the Date Filter tool
After we rebuilt the Filter tool and added the new expression editor, we made it even better! We made some changes to the basic filter to make it easier to filter by dates. Now with just a few clicks you can easily filter by dates within the basic filter. When you select a column with a date data type, you’ll see different operators. We’ve add the following operators:
Date Range: If you select this option you’ll be able to choose a start date and an end date to filter by.
Start Date and Periods After: This operator is very flexible. You can either select a start date that is a fixed date (e.g. 2018-03-12) or by a dynamic date (e.g. “tomorrow”). Then you can select a period type (e.g. month) and the number of periods.
End Date and Periods Before: This is like the Start Date and Periods After; however, rather than choosing a fixed date you start with the end date and then determine the periods.
If I wanted to know which of my users would benefit from a senior citizen program, I could easily filter and find everyone who is 65 or older (false output).
It should also be noted that if you create a workflow with the new options for date filtering in the basic filter and then try to open the workflow in an older version of Alteryx, it won’t maintain the date filtering selection. Keep this in mind if you are collaborating on workflows across multiple people with different versions of the Designer.
As a part of this Filter Tool upgrade we deprecated the Date Filter tool. The enhancements we made to the Filter tool included the Date Filter tool capabilities and more. Since the Filter tool is more faster with more features than the Date Filter tool, we’ve deprecated the Date Filter tool. If you have the Date Filter tool in an existing workflow, it will still work. You just won’t find it via the tool palette or global search.
Something else you’ll notice is we’re handling DateTime data type differently. In the previous Filter tool, DateTime data was handled as Date data. Essentially the time portion was lopped off, but that time data can be valuable. We give you the option to continue filtering in that manner if you wish. To do this, just check the “Filter only Date data” checkbox. However, you can also uncheck that box to take filter by the full DateTime. You’ll see the same operators and operand options as with Date data, but now you’ll have a time picker in addition to the date picker when selecting specific dates.
In this example, I am filtering to find a list of users who registered during a specific 36-hour period.
Help documentation for both the Filter tool and Date Filter tool has been updated.
The Filter tool has a new example workflow. Click on the tool in the palette to see the example.
The workflow I used to capture videos is attached to this post.