Before you jump in with your data, consider these important table concepts. You'll also learn how to add tables in the editor.

Concepts

Tables are Comprised of Columns and Rows

Tables are comprised of columns, which identify the different components of each record. A record is a row of data in your spreadsheet. For instance, a table of addresses would have a column each for street number, street name, city, state, and zip code. Rows contain the data for each individual piece. For the address example, each address would have its own row.

Each Table Must have a Key

Keys uniquely distinguish each row from other rows using a particular column.

The key may be a single column (such as Employee ID) or of two or more columns (such as FirstName and LastName). Each row in the table must have a key value that uniquely identifies it. In other words, no two rows in a table may have identical key values. This is critical, because keys allow AppSheet to reliably find the right table row.

When a user on a mobile device changes data through an AppSheet app, they're making changes to a local copy of the data temporarily stored on the device. When the user syncs these changes to the server, AppSheet sends the updated data to the server, finds the updated row using its unique key value, and applies those changes to that row. AppSheet can only find the right row because each row has a unique key value.

There are several ways keys can be determined: they can be natural, or calculated depending on the structure of the data and the access permissions to the table.

You Can Add Multiple Tables to your App

Tables can be different worksheets from the same file, or you can also choose tables from different data sources altogether: other workbooks or even databases. To learn more about different data sources, see the Data Sources section.

The editor only recognizes one table per worksheet. If you have multiple tables in the same worksheet--a somewhat common pattern in Microsoft Excel and Google Sheets--you'll need to move tables to new tabs until you have only one table per worksheet.

Choose Data from any Source

The worksheets you use for your tables can exist together in the same workbook, or they can be from different sources. You can learn more about using multiple worksheets here.

Practice

How to Add and Manage Tables

In the app editor, select Data > Tables and click New Table, and choose your data source.

Note: If you are a co-author of an app and there are no team data sources available, the New Table button is grayed out.

Learn Specifics of Adding Multiple Tables

Once you've added your tables, you can make choices about the table name within the editor, as well as data access and security.

You can see above that there are options for what a user can do with a specific table's data. Here, you determine whether users may add data, update it, delete it, or just read it. Use the buttons in the title bar to view and manage the table:

  • View Columns to view and manage the column content.

  • View Source to view the original source in another tab.

  • View Data to view a summary of the source data in another tab.

  • Delete to delete the table.

One consideration to take into account when configuring your table's settings is whether it should be a private table - maybe you want certain tables to be accessed only by certain individuals in your organization.

Now that you've seen what you can do with tables, you can take a closer look into tables and start to think about how to structure your columns.

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