Alphacast Wednesday Update - April 13th, 2022
The last weeks have been great. We have seen lots of users flowing into what we think is becoming the core feature of Alphacast: the pipelines engine. We have been interviewing users and seeing how you are interacting with these new features: We discovered that users are not only creating pipelines to automatize processes but also as a workspace, to analyze the data and be able to "tell stories" with it.
That's why we have come to a new product roadmap for Q2:2022: Notebooks!
Introducing Alphacast Notebooks!
Creating content in Alphacast often involves a back and forth between tabs. Search data, then go from Dataset to Pipeline, Back to Datasets, then to create a chart and then an insight to embed it, and back to square one. Complex pipelines and reports require no less than five open Tabs.
We are working to combine the full experience of creating content into a single screen. Load the data, transform and visualize it, include comments, and tell the story. Use the new "Notebook" as a workspace to find, analyze and share data.
As a first step, a new feature is in test mode: you can now create and edit a chart directly in the pipelines editor. You can see a visual output of your work and edit it right on the spot without the need to leave the screen. That chart will update itself every time the pipeline runs.
The chart editor and the pipelines editor are now a single thing.
Down the road, we will be recombining the building blocks of the platform into Notebooks, including things such as
- New sources and integrations: We will work to make the Notebooks the single place to input data into Alphacast, integrating part of the process that is now "Create Dataset" such as Google Drive or import CSV. Also other sources such as Custom URLs or even manual input, i.e. to copy & paste from Excel.
- Connect Excel or use the API to get the data of any pipeline or step. We want to simplify the way data flows in and out of Alphacast. Users will be able to get the data directly from the pipelines, without having to create ad-hoc datasets.
- Markdown or text editor to use the Notebooks as a way to tell a story, integrating the experience and look and feel to what is now the "insights" space.
- More "Dashboards" options. Place the content - charts, comments, tables - the way you prefer and create more flexible dashboards, reports, presentations, etc.
- Tables!: Tables have been a recurrent request. A basic experience for creating tables is still in experimental fase, and we plan to improve the experience and versatility of the tables.
- Combine transform steps into sections / templates. Once you create a specific sequence of transforms in your Notebook you will be able to combine and share it, so users can better understand the process behind your work or reuse pieces of it.
We are super excited about how the whole Alphacast experience will change once the Notebooks are in place.
Have a nice week!