Airtable

Airtable

Utilities / Application Utilities / Spreadsheets as a Backend
Needs advice
on
AirtableAirtableAppSheetAppSheet
and
JotformJotform

We're looking for a better way to gather complex data from our members and provide visualisations in a PDF report or online dashboard. Currently, we use Stacker to collect data, Airtable to store it, and PowerBI Desktop to build reports.

The data we collect is greenhouse gas emissions data, including several years of utility data, vehicle consumption data, waste production, paper consumption, and so on. Hundreds of possible data points for each member with a large degree of variation and dependency within those data points. One member might have a fleet of a hundred vehicles, and we need to know the make/model/year/fuel type of each one, plus the actual fuel consumption, while another member doesn't have any fleet emissions, but produces a large amount of refrigerants, and so on.

Stacker does not give us the dynamic flexibility we need for this ingestion project. Airtable Interfaces could potentially get us there, but we're not sure if it is as sophisticated as we need it to be especially with all the conditionals. We haven't explored Jotform or Appscript or other options yet.

Thanks!

READ MORE
3 upvotes6K views
Replies (2)
Recommends
on
Five

Hi Sam, sounds like you've stitched together a couple of "best of breed" solutions to accomplish what you need: a data collection interface builder, a database, and a dashboard.

If you want a "whole in one" solution that gives you a flexible database, you could try Five (I'm one of the co-founders). Five builds data-driven web apps.

The advantages of using Five are: 1. You're only paying for one tool instead of three. 2. Five gives you a customizable MySQL database. You can create tables and relationships visually. 3. Five gives you an easy form builder to collect data. You can also create data grids to collect data. 4. You can also create different user roles with different permissions, or public forms for people without their own login. 5. Five lets you create charts and dashboards, but our dashboarding is not as sophisticated as PowerBI (that's the trade-off).

So in a nutshell, if you're looking to replace your current setup with one web application then Five could be a solution.

What are the challenges? The biggest challenge seems to be that you're collecting different data from different users. If you want this data to be collected in a proper database, you'll have to come up with some standardized way of doing this. Conditional ("show-ifs") can easily be created inside of Five and could be one way of setting this up.

If you would like to have a chat with us about how to do this, feel free to sign up on our website and I'll reach out to you separately to set up a Zoom call. Our URL is https://five.co

READ MORE
Excel to Web App [Quick, Easy & Free 3-Step Tutorial] | Five (five.co)
2 upvotes2 comments2.2K views
Sam Fraser
Sam Fraser
September 24th 2023 at 12:15AM

Hi there, thanks for responding. Five looks like an interesting solution, though currently our team doesn't have Javascript skills. Can you tell me more about data grids? We're looking for ways users can submit tabular data, such as the cost and consumption of electricity across 12 months. We're also looking for ways to create new instances of the same form, such as a new form for each vehicle in the client's fleet, when we don't know the exact number. More information would be helpful.

Reply
Dom-5
Dom-5
September 25th 2023 at 2:29AM

Hi Sam, thanks for the response!

To build the application that you have in mind, you don't need to know any JavaScript. Most of it appears to be form and calculation-based, so you could build this with a basic understanding of SQL and point-and-click. The most important part is getting your database model right. Building out the forms, grids or charts is pretty simple after that. In fact, I'd like to think that if you managed to connect Stacker, Airtable, and PowerBI, Five will be a breeze 馃榿

A data grid gives you an editable, Excel-like interface to insert, update or check data. To see a data grid in action, check out this blog post: https://five.co/blog/free-microsoft-access-alternative/

There's a video right at the top. Go to 08:42min to see the data grid. Inside the data grid, you can filter, hide columns, pin columns, edit data, etc.

Regarding instances, Five lets you create multiple instances of the same application by simply replicating them in point-and-click.

Reply
Recommends
on
Airtable

Hey, there's an extension for Airtable, it's called Documint. It creates PDF and is easy to create templates.

READ MORE
1 upvote1.7K views
Needs advice
on
BubbleBubble
and
WebflowWebflow

I would like to build a community-based customer review platform for a niche industry where users can sign up for a forum, as well as post detailed reviews of their experience with a company/product, including a rating system for pre-selected features. Something like niche.com or areavibes.com with curated information/data, ratings, reviews, and comparison functionalities.

Is this possible to build using no-code tools? I have read about the possibility of using Webflow with Memberstack, Airtable, and Elfsight through Zapier / Integromat, which may allow for good design and functionality. Is it possible with Bubble or Bildr?

I have no problems with a bit of a learning curve as long as what I want is possible. Since I have 0 coding experience, I am not sure how to go about it.

Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

READ MORE
7 upvotes501.3K views
Replies (1)
Web Developer at Soltech LLC

Hey there! I admire you because I was in your shoes about 3 years ago. Congrats at having a dream and wanting to do it. That is awesome. Keep going.

Personally, I wouldn't recommend trying to do this on a no-code platform. I would use webflow for the design, and building of the html, and css, but then I would build your rating/review/forum platform on Laravel.

Laravel simplifies the application process and there are a ton of resources out there that can help you with development and learning the basics.

No matter what, you will have to learn some code for this project if you want to pull it off. In my opinion, setting up your project on a great web framework will set it up for success, especially if your app is used by a lot of people.

If you set it up on bubble or webflow, and then you get a lot of users, you are going to have to move to a web framework. Taking the hard road now will save you a lot later in the long run.

I just happened to write a blog about this very thing this morning, which is linked below.

Feel free to reach out if you have any questions or if you would like help with this! and good luck!

READ MORE
Don't believe the No-Code lies. | Soltech LLC (solmediaco.com)
6 upvotes1 comment4.6K views
Imastudent26
Imastudent26
July 23rd 2020 at 8:42AM

Thanks for the tip! I'll check out Laravel for sure.

Reply