Upcoming updates - Mar 2019 - part 1

Upcoming updates - Mar 2019 - part 1

Hello App Creators, 

Continuing with our recent post on Feb-2019's updates, we're here with a few more updates for you.

In the coming days of March, 2019, the Zoho Creator team will be rolling out the following feature updates:
  • Zia-powered smart data import

  • Auto-refresh of related elements in pages

  • Ability to drill down data points in pivot charts
  • 
Application of field-level permissions when viewing related data
  • 
Domain restriction

In addition to our changelog, we'll leave a comment below as each of these updates are rolled out.

- - - - - -

Zia-powered smart data import

Applicable to : Zoho Creator 5

This improvement will bring you: 
  • Data cleansing capabilities powered by Zia — Zoho's AI assistant for business
  • Support for importing subform, name, and address data
  • An import interface that enables a spreadsheet app-like experience
Note: These improvements will be available during app creation and not when you create a form by importing a file.

Zia-powered data cleansing capabilities

Before you upload your file and create an app, it's a best practice to tweak the data in it so that it fits the model of tables in a relational database. To assist here, the new Zia-powered import interface will enable you to:
  • Filter the data in a sheet. Only the filtered data will be imported into the application.
  • Find & Replace data
  • Perform data-cleansing operations in the sheets, which are grouped under the Refine Data option:
    • Fix inconsistent spellings
    • Fix missing values
    • Split the data in a column into two by defining their delimiter
    • Merge columns
    • Explore the frequency distribution of values in a column


Importing subform data

Before you upload your file, you'll have to ensure that the main or parent form data and subform data are in separate sheets.

In the import interface, checking a sheet's Make it as subform checkbox is how you'll define that it contains subform data. Upon doing so, you'll have to:
  1. Select the sheet that contains its parent data. This'll become the parent or main form after the import operation. Let's call this the "parent sheet".
  2. Select the column in the "parent sheet" that identifies each row uniquely.
  3. Select the column that's the parent row identifier in the current sheet (which you're marking as subform)


Importing name and address data

You'll be able to map the Name or Address field to a column via its Field type option.

Name/address data can be present in a single column or span multiple columns. When it spans multiple columns, you'll be able to map the name subfields (Prefix, First Name, Last Name, Suffix) and address subfields (Address Line 1, Address Line 2, etc.) to the respective columns in the sheet.



Spreadsheet app-like import interface

Currently upon importing, the sheets in your file are displayed as collapsible sections that show you a preview of the data in them. They'll now be displayed as tabs — like sheets in a spreadsheet. In addition to the existing abilities of renaming and selecting/deselecting sheets, you'll be able to:
  • View the data in all the rows in the sheets
  • Sort the data in your sheets. (This sorting won't be applied in the app you create. It's only to let you view the data in the required order.)
  • Delete rows
  • Undo and redo actions


- - - - - -

Auto-refresh of related elements in pages

Applicable to : Zoho Creator 5

A common usage of pages is to build Dashboards that display key performance indices (KPIs). A common requirement in business and productivity apps is for the dashboards to show the latest data. This was so far being achieved via workflows by reloading the page after a record was created, updated, and deleted.

We've stepped up in this regard — page elements corresponding to an embedded form will automatically be refreshed when your users create, update, and delete records in that form. Things to note:
  • The elements that will be refreshed are panels, charts, reports (except pivot reports)
  • The create, update, and delete operations must happen from the same window. Opening the form (from the page) in a pop-up or new window will not auto-refresh the related elements in that page.


- - - - - -

Ability to drill down data points in pivot charts

Applicable to : Zoho Creator 5 and  accounts using  New UI

The ability to drill down data points in pivot charts enables users to visualize the underlying data points as a new chart. We'll be adding this ability to the View underlying data property of pivot charts:
  • This property will be renamed as View underlying data and drill down
  • Upon checking this, your users will additionally see the Drill Down option, clicking which will enable them to visualize the underlying data points as a new chart

- - - - - -

Application of field-level permissions when viewing related data

Applicable to : Zoho Creator 5 and accounts using  New UI

Currently field-level permissions aren't strictly enforced when users view related data — data fetched via lookup and subform. After this is fixed:
  • In the quick view of a report, users will be able to view only those related fields that they have permission for
  • In the detail view of a report, users will be able to view a related data block only when they have permission to view data in the corresponding form. Also, they'll be able to view only those fields of the related form that they have permission for.

- - - - - -

Domain restriction

Applicable to : All

Enterprise-grade applications, especially those that handle and store sensitive data, face a variety of threats. It therefore becomes essential to ensure that an email address from an external domain does not even get added as a User or Developer in such applications.

Welcome Domain Restriction. This feature will ensure the above said. Things to note:
  • Domain restriction will be available at the app level
  • You'll be able to enable this only when your Zoho account is based on your own domain

- - - - - -

We hope you found this post informative. Let us know what you think about these updates by commenting below.

Best, 
Lakshman | Zoho Creator


    Zoho Marketing Automation
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