It is just that simple… or is it?

Wow, with the Fall release released and the holidays upon us, we are getting heads down into our Spring release. Based on your feedback, we’ve decided on an overall theme of simplicity. We’ve been moving at such a breakneck speed over the past few years, we want to make sure we are stepping back, keeping your big picture in mind and making sure we are as simple as we can be. So, I have some questions for you on this related to where we could improve, but also giving us some ideas of where we’ve done it well… so we can emulate that!

  • What can we simplify? What do you think is already "the bomb" in simplicity?
  • Where do you find yourself stumbling? And when gliding through?
  • What makes you say "Why didn’t they just do…"? Or "Wow, I loved that they did…!!!"
  • When do your users complain about doing something? When do they gasp with delight on how easy something was to do?
  • Where do you have to repeat something several times to get the job done? When is it done before you’ve had time to blink?

That should get us started. Feel free to throw in any other thoughts around this theme or others.

Hope you are all enjoying a nice holiday season!

  • http://www.odesk.com/ John Kellgren

    What I would like to see is a real, responsive help desk. To me, this is the one real problem with Quickbase. As a group, we don’t often ask questions because we have a deep DB experienced front staff. But, when we do have a question, in most cases we consider it timely because of our rapid development schedule.

    Having first-line access to a real member of your technical staff would provide an instant credibility boost for your product. Even if you could only guarantee something like a 24 hour response time, it would at least keep us (and our superiors) from having to look at the support message block about every four hours just hoping that an answer from your staff gets posted.

    As far as everyone’s wish list is concerned, I’m sure that they are all somewhat different. Mine, is pretty simplistic. The Support concern aforementioned, a much more developed Desktop Solution, and a well written formula creation guide that would save much time by explaining the ‘invisible’ syntax that we have to deal with currently.

    Oh yeah, I almost forgot. Whatever changed recently that prevents HTML-based Paqes from rendering without clicking a second time or refreshing, please put it back to the way that it was.

    And with that, my initial QuickBase wish list, I would like to wish all QuickBase users and staff a very safe and joyous holiday season.

    John Kellgren
    oDesk

    [Reply]

  • http://www.odesk.com John Kellgren

    What I would like to see is a real, responsive help desk. To me, this is the one real problem with Quickbase. As a group, we don’t often ask questions because we have a deep DB experienced front staff. But, when we do have a question, in most cases we consider it timely because of our rapid development schedule.

    Having first-line access to a real member of your technical staff would provide an instant credibility boost for your product. Even if you could only guarantee something like a 24 hour response time, it would at least keep us (and our superiors) from having to look at the support message block about every four hours just hoping that an answer from your staff gets posted.

    As far as everyone’s wish list is concerned, I’m sure that they are all somewhat different. Mine, is pretty simplistic. The Support concern aforementioned, a much more developed Desktop Solution, and a well written formula creation guide that would save much time by explaining the ‘invisible’ syntax that we have to deal with currently.

    Oh yeah, I almost forgot. Whatever changed recently that prevents HTML-based Paqes from rendering without clicking a second time or refreshing, please put it back to the way that it was.

    And with that, my initial QuickBase wish list, I would like to wish all QuickBase users and staff a very safe and joyous holiday season.

    John Kellgren
    oDesk

    [Reply]

  • Mark Shnier

    Over the years, there have been many posts on the Forum from users trying to create formulas on subtotal lines on either “Group By’s” on Table Views or Summary Views.

    There seem to be two situations. One is typically where we want to calculate a % of the total of a number of detail records – so the ability for a detail record to have a formula based on the subtotal line below.

    Another is where we want to calculate a formula based on subtotals apprearing in a Summary View. (That one would seem easier to program, as it could be a “Custom Formula Column”).

    I think that it always surprises them that there is no easy way to do that.

    I would also like to see the floating headings functionality that works so nicely on regular table views be extended to the other types of views, such as Cross Tab and Summary (both Summary views form a table view and a native Summary View).

    Mark

    [Reply]

  • Mark Shnier

    Over the years, there have been many posts on the Forum from users trying to create formulas on subtotal lines on either “Group By’s” on Table Views or Summary Views.

    There seem to be two situations. One is typically where we want to calculate a % of the total of a number of detail records – so the ability for a detail record to have a formula based on the subtotal line below.

    Another is where we want to calculate a formula based on subtotals apprearing in a Summary View. (That one would seem easier to program, as it could be a “Custom Formula Column”).

    I think that it always surprises them that there is no easy way to do that.

    I would also like to see the floating headings functionality that works so nicely on regular table views be extended to the other types of views, such as Cross Tab and Summary (both Summary views form a table view and a native Summary View).

    Mark

    [Reply]

  • http://www.odesk.com/ John Kellgren

    Mark, you just made me think of one more thing. Why not provide the ability to have multiple custom formula columns to include in a view. That can’t be that difficult from a programmatical standpoint. Multiple variables repeating the same internal routine. CustomColumn1, CustomColumn2, CustomColumn 3, etc.

    John

    [Reply]

  • http://www.odesk.com John Kellgren

    Mark, you just made me think of one more thing. Why not provide the ability to have multiple custom formula columns to include in a view. That can’t be that difficult from a programmatical standpoint. Multiple variables repeating the same internal routine. CustomColumn1, CustomColumn2, CustomColumn 3, etc.

    John

    [Reply]

  • Kristina Davis

    It would be awesome if e-mail subscriptions could be setup to distribute to a list of e-mail addresses contained in particular field and table.

    [Reply]

  • Kristina Davis

    It would be awesome if e-mail subscriptions could be setup to distribute to a list of e-mail addresses contained in particular field and table.

    [Reply]

  • http://www.typepad.com/t/trackback/3857373 Larry Cohn

    A couple of things come to mind. One would be a simpler way for an administrator to get people outside of the organization signed-up and access to a database. Emails from corpsales@quickbase always seem to get caught in spam filters or time-out and are very confusing to our new users.

    Second would be the ability to simplify the user interface, maybe by role. Could we remove the “Go To” or “Help” or “I want to” or “refine this view” for certain users?

    And third, let us choose our own forms (stored as pages) on the forms usage page. This would let us mingle our forms with the standard Quickbase forms without having to create a whole user interface.

    Anything that makes Quickbase simpler will always be appreciated.

    Happy Holidays.

    Larry

    [Reply]

  • http://www.typepad.com/t/trackback/3857373 Larry Cohn

    A couple of things come to mind. One would be a simpler way for an administrator to get people outside of the organization signed-up and access to a database. Emails from corpsales@quickbase always seem to get caught in spam filters or time-out and are very confusing to our new users.

    Second would be the ability to simplify the user interface, maybe by role. Could we remove the “Go To” or “Help” or “I want to” or “refine this view” for certain users?

    And third, let us choose our own forms (stored as pages) on the forms usage page. This would let us mingle our forms with the standard Quickbase forms without having to create a whole user interface.

    Anything that makes Quickbase simpler will always be appreciated.

    Happy Holidays.

    Larry

    [Reply]

  • Kristina

    It would also be a great help if Overview pages could be e-mailed and printed.

    [Reply]

  • Kristina

    It would also be a great help if Overview pages could be e-mailed and printed.

    [Reply]

  • http://www.odesk.com/ John Kellgren

    One more big one for us is the return e-mail address on notification mail. Even though I read the note about why the address is a quickbase one, we may have to move our response mail to our own servers. The whole idea around a Corporate QuickBase is to enhance the idea of private labeling. That can’t happen when you’re sending e-mail with a QuickBase domain stamp.

    John Kellgren

    [Reply]

  • http://www.odesk.com John Kellgren

    One more big one for us is the return e-mail address on notification mail. Even though I read the note about why the address is a quickbase one, we may have to move our response mail to our own servers. The whole idea around a Corporate QuickBase is to enhance the idea of private labeling. That can’t happen when you’re sending e-mail with a QuickBase domain stamp.

    John Kellgren

    [Reply]

  • Carl Tuttle

    As the one who develops the applications for our company, I would like to see the navigation between tables, views, forms, and access levels simplified. I realize there are several levels of interface when one starts getting into field-level access control, but the existing interface seems discordant with some view tasks within the table or role customization tabs, some access tasks in the view, table, or role customization tasks, etc.

    My suggestion would be to arrange customization tasks that are related to tables (i.e. Views, Forms, and Access) within the current table customization tabs. They could all be in the Other Actions panel of the Customize Tables tabs and would eliminate the need to re-select which table to focus on. I tend to work on all aspects of a table, and find myself forgetting where to go for a particular task that is not in the Customize Tables and Fields area.

    Carl Tuttle

    [Reply]

  • Carl Tuttle

    As the one who develops the applications for our company, I would like to see the navigation between tables, views, forms, and access levels simplified. I realize there are several levels of interface when one starts getting into field-level access control, but the existing interface seems discordant with some view tasks within the table or role customization tabs, some access tasks in the view, table, or role customization tasks, etc.

    My suggestion would be to arrange customization tasks that are related to tables (i.e. Views, Forms, and Access) within the current table customization tabs. They could all be in the Other Actions panel of the Customize Tables tabs and would eliminate the need to re-select which table to focus on. I tend to work on all aspects of a table, and find myself forgetting where to go for a particular task that is not in the Customize Tables and Fields area.

    Carl Tuttle

    [Reply]

  • http://www.quickbase.com/ Jana Eggers

    I just wanted to say thanks for all of this great feedback. Any more that strikes you, please keep giving it!

    THANKS!
    Jana

    [Reply]

  • http://www.quickbase.com Jana Eggers

    I just wanted to say thanks for all of this great feedback. Any more that strikes you, please keep giving it!

    THANKS!
    Jana

    [Reply]

  • Mike Gerrity

    One simple thought-
    When inviting a new user, I would like to have a customizizable default message(s) I can include with the invitation. Right now your default says something like “this is an application I created with Quickbase”, but ideally I could create different default invitations based on Roles – my invitation might include a basic welcome, and an explanation of the main features of the application that are relevant to their role as well as basic sign-up instructions, etc.

    [Reply]

  • Mike Gerrity

    One simple thought-
    When inviting a new user, I would like to have a customizizable default message(s) I can include with the invitation. Right now your default says something like “this is an application I created with Quickbase”, but ideally I could create different default invitations based on Roles – my invitation might include a basic welcome, and an explanation of the main features of the application that are relevant to their role as well as basic sign-up instructions, etc.

    [Reply]

  • David Hogarty

    How about a non-textual formula editor, with the ability to save aggregates as new functions for future use, and the ability to refer back to previous expressions without retyping them?

    [Reply]

  • David Hogarty

    How about a non-textual formula editor, with the ability to save aggregates as new functions for future use, and the ability to refer back to previous expressions without retyping them?

    [Reply]

  • Mike Gerrity

    How about Conditionally Required Fields. What I am after is a way to make a field required ONLY IF another field meets certain parameters. For example, if a Status field of sales record is marked as “Closed”, users would be required to fill in fields for Closed Amount, Reason job Closed, Close Date, etc. I have many other places in my applicatin where I could use this functionality.

    Ideally when a user went to save the record they would get a message explaining that a “Closed Date” is required when the Status field is marked as Closed”, but if thats too difficult, then the standard message that simply states that some required fields are empty would do the trick.

    To make this work, I would think you would add an “advanced” section under the Require Field check box on the Field Property page. You could then have a set or rules which must be met in order for the field to be required. The rules would be very similar to the matching rules you employ throughout Quickbase, so I am hoping this is not too much of a technical stretch. Thanks for seriously considering this – I have to believe this would be helpful in almost any application.

    [Reply]

  • Mike Gerrity

    How about Conditionally Required Fields. What I am after is a way to make a field required ONLY IF another field meets certain parameters. For example, if a Status field of sales record is marked as “Closed”, users would be required to fill in fields for Closed Amount, Reason job Closed, Close Date, etc. I have many other places in my applicatin where I could use this functionality.

    Ideally when a user went to save the record they would get a message explaining that a “Closed Date” is required when the Status field is marked as Closed”, but if thats too difficult, then the standard message that simply states that some required fields are empty would do the trick.

    To make this work, I would think you would add an “advanced” section under the Require Field check box on the Field Property page. You could then have a set or rules which must be met in order for the field to be required. The rules would be very similar to the matching rules you employ throughout Quickbase, so I am hoping this is not too much of a technical stretch. Thanks for seriously considering this – I have to believe this would be helpful in almost any application.

    [Reply]

  • http://www.fah.com/ Andrew Fuller

    We have used both Salesforce.com and Quickbase.com for extended periods of time. For most things, we prefer Quickbase. One feature that Salesforce.com has had for years, is the ability to allow for very convient e-mail tracking either with a contact record or project. We would love it if quickbase added a feature making it very easy to tract e-mail correspondence/history to a record. In the mean time, we will continue to do the Ol’ cut and paste. Thansks – Andy

    [Reply]

  • http://www.fah.com Andrew Fuller

    We have used both Salesforce.com and Quickbase.com for extended periods of time. For most things, we prefer Quickbase. One feature that Salesforce.com has had for years, is the ability to allow for very convient e-mail tracking either with a contact record or project. We would love it if quickbase added a feature making it very easy to tract e-mail correspondence/history to a record. In the mean time, we will continue to do the Ol’ cut and paste. Thansks – Andy

    [Reply]

  • Polly Edwards

    I’d like Quickbase to support Palm synchronization. I have Smart List to Go on my Palm, and I’m still able to synch it with QB with a little applet I got with Smart List’s predecessor, ThinkDB, but I can’t suggest it to any of our sales staff since the product is no longer available/supported.

    [Reply]

  • Polly Edwards

    I’d like Quickbase to support Palm synchronization. I have Smart List to Go on my Palm, and I’m still able to synch it with QB with a little applet I got with Smart List’s predecessor, ThinkDB, but I can’t suggest it to any of our sales staff since the product is no longer available/supported.

    [Reply]

  • James LaCorte

    What can we simplify? What do you think is already “the bomb” in simplicity?

    -Groups is very confusing.

    -I wish there was better user management

    -I wish there was a way to contol size of applications.. I have many admins and need a way to contol how many users they can add to their database (users, file size, attachement size). Since I foot the bill I want to set a size and charge them, if they need a large size they have to request. This way it is not a surprise when I get billed. This is a corp account.

    -Better ways to report data (pivot table, better charts and custom colors, colorize a cell not the whole row

    -Easier way to have drop down selections dependant on other drop downs

    -Ability to select multiple items in a drop down

    -Better way to look at users and sort by applications they are in

    - Allow you to create a custom column in a view and do row colorization off of the custom column. Right now I have to create a field and it would be nice not to have to do this

    -Ability to create a timeline with major milestone (title of them) and red, yellow, green for status of them.

    [Reply]

  • James LaCorte

    What can we simplify? What do you think is already “the bomb” in simplicity?

    -Groups is very confusing.

    -I wish there was better user management

    -I wish there was a way to contol size of applications.. I have many admins and need a way to contol how many users they can add to their database (users, file size, attachement size). Since I foot the bill I want to set a size and charge them, if they need a large size they have to request. This way it is not a surprise when I get billed. This is a corp account.

    -Better ways to report data (pivot table, better charts and custom colors, colorize a cell not the whole row

    -Easier way to have drop down selections dependant on other drop downs

    -Ability to select multiple items in a drop down

    -Better way to look at users and sort by applications they are in

    - Allow you to create a custom column in a view and do row colorization off of the custom column. Right now I have to create a field and it would be nice not to have to do this

    -Ability to create a timeline with major milestone (title of them) and red, yellow, green for status of them.

    [Reply]

  • http://www.datacollaborative.com/ Eric Segal

    A lot of my clients want to minimize the possibilities of their staff getting “lost” in Quickbase. They log in, and then they are not sure what to do next. What would really help is if there was a user preference that said: “Automatically start this application everytime I log on”.

    Then someone could log on, and be sent straight into their preferred application. If they wanted to get back to my Quickbase, they could still go in under “Go To”. But it would get them over that first hump.

    [Reply]

  • http://www.datacollaborative.com Eric Segal

    A lot of my clients want to minimize the possibilities of their staff getting “lost” in Quickbase. They log in, and then they are not sure what to do next. What would really help is if there was a user preference that said: “Automatically start this application everytime I log on”.

    Then someone could log on, and be sent straight into their preferred application. If they wanted to get back to my Quickbase, they could still go in under “Go To”. But it would get them over that first hump.

    [Reply]

  • Gino DeMonaco

    I am looking for a way to export data from QuickBase directly into QuickBooks Pro. Any suggestions?

    [Reply]

  • Gino DeMonaco

    I am looking for a way to export data from QuickBase directly into QuickBooks Pro. Any suggestions?

    [Reply]