Dabble DB

The Dabble Blog

Archives: July 2007

« June 2007 · August 2007 »

Filter finesse.

Filtering your set of data, large or small, is a way to hide the noise when you require the ability to zoom in and out a particular segment.  Since we have a number of clever ways of doing this, here is a quick summary of the beauty in Dabble DB’s data filtering.

(Note the automatic recognition as you type into the search box. Once you enter your filter, click the filter button that appears below the text entry box).


The basic: “Smith”, “Last Name: Smith”
The first will search for the word in any field; the latter will search for the entry in the specified field name.

The wildcard: “Last Name: S*”
The partial-match filter will bring up all entries with a Last Name beginning with “S”.

The exclusion: “Description: any” or “Description: not any”
One will ignore blank entries and the other will find blank entries.

The dynamic: “User: me” and “Date: this month”
Note, “me” will always be the current user signed in and “this month” will always be the current month.

The valuable: “Sales >= 100” and “Sales: <= 100”
Value filters can be used for numeric fields. Using both filters above the result will be all Sales data inclusively between $100 and $1000.

The notable:

  • : — used for specifying field names
  • <, <=, >, >=, after, before — used with numbers and dates
  • today, yesterday, tomorrow — used with dates
  • now — used with dates to mean "today at the current time"
  • from now, ago — used with dates to mean "in the future" or "in the past"
  • !, no, none, not — specifies that matches should be excluded
  • any, anything — matches any value
  • all — match if all entries are included in a list of entries field
  • * — specifies a wild card for text fields

My favourite use at the moment:


I use a saved view in one of my applications to calculate Canadian taxes on just the Canadian accounts each month.  Dabble DB gives me the answer immediately – the calculations and filters are already set.  I would like to know how you have finessed your application with the use of filters - post them in a comment.

Check out our help page for more detailed information. 


Need to send an email?

We've recently had a few people ask how to extract email addresses from their databases.  In case you have the same question, here are some steps.

1. Make sure Dabble DB knows your data includes the email addresses.  Configure the field to by choosing the email address option under the Text Value options.

2. Create a view that includes the email addresses you need.  Do you just need your "Platinum Donors" or "Overdue Customers"?  Make use of Dabble DB's filters to specify your list.  If you want all the entries in a particular view, leave all the check boxes unchecked

3. At the bottom of your screen in the green bar is the "Actions..." menu.  Select "Send mail to [name of your email field] of [checked/all]".


4. The box below will appear with the entire comma-separated list ready for a copy-and-paste into your email application.


If you weren't already using this feature, I hope you enjoy it.

¿Donde está la zapateria?

Vamos a estrenar Dabble DB en Español, y necesitamos voluntarios valientes. Si quiere probar la nueva versión, por favor póngase en contacto con nosotros por info@dabbledb.com.

If you'd like to help translate Dabble DB to Bora Boran - or some other language - please let us know.

A bad case of the Mondays

On Monday, the server that hosted our main web site, including this blog and our user forum, had a major catastrophe and died. We spent the rest of the day getting a new server up and running to take its place. Perhaps it was a sort of comeuppance as we were recently congratulating ourselves on having launched Dabble DB a year ago and having had no system-wide outages — scheduled or otherwise — in that entire time.

Unfortunately, the server that went down was also responsible for directing requests to the various servers that host customer databases, so everyone lost access to their databases for a time too. No public web site, no blog, no forum, no database access... all in all, not our finest hour.

Naturally there are lessons to be learned after such disasters. We've identified some of the weaknesses in our old system and are taking steps to make sure that when the next server fails, it will be a less calamitous affair. Our systems will be more independent so that we can better communicate with you in the event of emergency. This blog, for instance, is now hosted off-site by the fine folks at TypePad, so it should always be available for us to give status updates. (You may want to change your bookmarks to http://blog.dabbledb.com/).

I'm proud to say that in all the mayhem, we lost absolutely no data. A little hair and some sanity on the other hand... aah, who needs 'em?

« June 2007 · August 2007 »