A better UI for filtering?

My schema is pretty simple. Three tables:

  • 160 categories
  • 600 projects
  • 70 leaders

Each category and each project is assigned a leader (Leader column in the Category and Project tables).
Each project can be associated with one or more categories (Link to Categories, allow multiple selections).

I’d like to make an easy way for a user to pick a Category from a dropdown list and see all projects associated with that category. I can do it by creating explicit views and filters, but I would have to create and save a view for each possible category. How do I make this more interactive without having to teach users how to make filter views themselves?

Extra points: Instead of one big categories drop down list of 160 items, the categories are grouped. Can I have two cascading dropdown lists? (1) pick a Group, (2) pick a category from a filtered list of categories in that Group?

How many users do you have?

If you have a small number of users, you may be better off investing in teaching them how to filter and group on their own. The knowledge will help them in all future use of Airtable.

If you have a small, fixed number of users who are very resistant to learning how to filter, you could give each user a personal checkbox field and a view filtered for that checkbox. Then have a script that walks them through picking a group and category, and the script sets the checkboxes.