Dabble DB

The Dabble Blog

Dabble DB 2007

We're big fans here of incremental improvement. That's why we make it so easy to evolve your views, forms, and even the structure of your data smoothly over time. It also guides our approach to the product: rather than saving things up for a big release, we roll out one feature at a time, as soon as it's ready (and usually not before then), week after week. All of those little features add up, however, and when I started compiling a list of the changes we've made in this last year, I was truly amazed by how far the product has come. So here you are: release notes for Dabble DB, version 2007. Everything listed below has been rolled out in the last 12 months by our awesome team. We hope our users have enjoyed discovering these features as much as we enjoyed building them.

Deeper datatypes

We've always been puzzled that most databases only support dates, numbers, and text as basic data types. At Dabble DB, we're always trying to enrich the kind of data you can work with:

  • Location fields understand what continent, country, and sometimes state and province an address is in
  • Attachment fields let you store documents and images (complete with thumbnails), and organize them by size or kind
  • Duration fields show you timings in days, hours, minutes and seconds
  • Currency fields keep your dollars separate from your pounds and pesos, or combine them as of today's exchange rates
  • Whichever country you're in, dates and numbers can be entered and formatted the way you're used to seeing them
  • Email fields let you mass mail your entire contact list, or a carefully filtered selection of them

Richer querying

Your data is only as good as the answers you can get from it, and Dabble DB's querying and calculation features got some tweaks in 2007 our power users loved:

  • Our easy point-and-click formulas can now include constants (e.g., current sales tax) which can be adjusted on the fly
  • Grouped reports can now be sorted by subtotals and other calculations, to get your reports just right
  • Flipping a filter from "is" to "is not" is now a simple click away
  • Text searches are now more powerful, and allow "*" wildcards anywhere in the keyword
  • Search for multiple values at once by separating them with semicolons

Broader visualizations

Storing data, searching data - the next step is viewing data, and we've got lots of new ways to do it. Dabble now includes:

  • Line charts for showing time-scale data, with smart daily, monthly, quarterly or yearly axes
  • Multicolored bar charts for making sense of complex grouped reports
  • Pie charts when you just want to see how big your slices are
  • Maps derived from your address data at the level of continent, country or state
  • Beautiful paginated PDFs in any size or orientation for printing or sending to your boss

Smarter imports

Having your data in Dabble is great, but first you have to get it there. 2007 saw a total revamp of our import tools, including:

  • Automatic detection of data types like date, number, and currency
  • Automatic orientation (row-based or column-based) of pasted-in data
  • Scheduled, recurring imports from a URL to keep Dabble in sync with external data sources

Wider sharing

Some of the biggest changes in 2007 came in how you can share your data and applications. To boot:

  • The new Commons plan lets you use Dabble DB for free if you agree to freely share your data with the world
  • Dabble Pages gives you total control over who can see each view in your database, in a streamlined and customizable interface
  • A drag-and-drop form builder lets you take your sharing to the next step by collecting data from colleagues or the public with custom forms
  • Everything can be branded with your own uploaded logo, and Dabble will pick a color scheme to match

Here's to more great features in 2008!

1 comments

  1. Jim Coffee says:

    Thanks for the update. I don't see a way to subscribe to this blog's feed?? Would be nice to get your comments right into my reader. I would receive them in a more timely manner...and wouldn't miss one.

    Thanks
    -Jim-

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