New Feature: Timeline view

We are thrilled to share that as of today, Timeline view is available in Airtable.

What is Timeline view?

Timeline view is a new view type that will allow you to track and visualize what’s most important to help you understand resources, events, tasks, or initiatives over time. This new view will allow you to color-code, group, filter, and sequence your records on a timeline so that you can see what’s happening, when.

Some features accompanying Timeline view include:

  • Groupings: Similar to Grid view, Timeline view allows for multiple levels of grouping, with each level being collapsible so you can see the most relevant information.
  • Swimlanes: Records that are grouped together are displayed in a horizontally-scrolling timeline we call a “swimlane.” Several records can sit side-by-side in the same swimlane; if they overlap, they stack on top of each other so nothing gets lost.
  • The ol’ drag-and-drop: Easily change deadlines and reassign tasks using the drag-and-drop shortcut. When you shift a record in Timeline view, that record will update throughout your table in real-time.

Share your reactions and questions below - or better yet, create your own Timeline view and share it with the community here!

Lastly, we’re hosting our very frist Airtable Community AMA on October 13th. If you’re not familiar, “AMA” means “Ask me anything” and our product team will be answering all your burning questions about Timeline view. You’ll have the opportunity to see Timeline view in action, chat with other Airtable users, and share any feedback with our product team. We look forward to seeing you.

Registration details can be found here.

Additional resources to explore:

Common questions

How is this different from Gantt view?

So glad you asked! Gantt is a very targeted view based on the Gantt methodology used for plotting tasks and dependencies between tasks in order to visualize the critical path that defines a project. In comparison, Timeline view is incredibly flexible and can be used to represent any set of records over time, grouped by a particular field.

When grouping records, am I limited by the field type that I can group by? (Similar to limitations that Kanban View might have with just single select and collaborator fields)

No, you can group by any field type.

Can calculated (lookups, rollups, formulas) dates be used for start and end dates?

Yes, you can use calculated dates for start and end dates, but you have to make sure that the fields used for the “start date” and “end date” use the same time-related settings.

Specifically, if using a calculated date, make sure that settings in the “Format” section of the Field Configuration under “Include a Time Field” and “Use the same time zone (GMT) for all collaborators” match between the start date and end date fields. If this is not the case, you will see an error to this effect.

What is the default sorting for records with the same dates? (i.e. if start date and end date were the same, how would they stack?)

The default is record creation time (like an unsorted grid view), but you can use the “Sort” feature to set a sort order which will apply if records have the same start date.

What happens if some records have start and end dates but others only have one date? Do both dates have to have values in order for records to appear?

Currently, the Timeline View can be configured to either expect a single date field, or both a start and end date. If the Timeline is configured to expect an end date, records with only a start date won’t show up on the timeline.

Does the shared view functionality (filtering, etc) have the same user experience?

Shares should have all the same functionality and UX, though you won’t be able to edit the labels.

Can the text wrap?

Yes, text wrapping is supported!

How can I see a list of all records?

Find the ‘see records’ button in the top right-hand corner of the screen.

How can I include the Timeline View in a dashboard?

We encourage you to use the Embed App to see the Timeline View in a dashboard format.

Should I continue to keep using Timeline App, or will it be getting deprecated?

Just as with Gantt, over time we will be migrating Timeline capabilities to the Timeline View and deprecating the Timeline App. So we highly encourage you to migrate usage over to the Timeline View today!

9 Likes

Timeline View’s labeling capabilities are excellent, hope to see them added to Calendar and Gantt too!

  • Not only can you use a field other than the Primary Field to label records, you can use multiple fields to label records.
  • You can bold, italicize, or underline the fields used as labels

  • When you expand the record height you can control whether record labels are shown as list or on top of each other
6 Likes

This is a great addition to the integrated views and, like @Kamille_Parks mentions, going the extra mile usability wise :raised_hands::ok_hand:

2 Likes

Thanks for listening. :slight_smile:

2 Likes

This looks perfect for my plant life cycle and garden project - thanks so much!! Can’t wait to check this out today.

1 Like

Can someone provide me with the key differences between timeline and gant. At a glance, they look similar.

Gantt

  • Each record is its own line and all records that are “somewhen” will be visible in the sidebar
  • You can show dependencies between records
  • Collapsing a group summarizes all records in that group as one long “event” using the earliest start time and latest end time

Timeline

  • More record label flexibility
  • There’s no sidebar, records aren’t visible unless they’re in your displayed date range
  • Collapsing a group doesn’t summarize the records into one bar
5 Likes

Awesome addition to views… would be even better if there was a summary count of the number of records one a date at the top of the column

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Thank you for this suggestion! I’ve made sure to pass it along to the team and hope to follow up soon :slight_smile:

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This is incredible! And @Russell_Findlay’s suggestion would be a major help in spoting resource issues.

@Jordan_Scott1, thank you for the detailed update! It is truly a joy to see Airtable investing in the community through your fantastic engagement.

Hopefully I can convince my organization to start using Airtable again with all the recent updates!!

I’ve spent some time this morning sitting down with the new Airtable Timeline view - and was so very happy to see it working with my rolling calendar formulas. Below is a screenshot from my garden project, which reads off of actively growing plants that are detailed within a plant dictionary. The below timeline shows what’s in flower.

And below is how I structured my rolling date table, seems to work well. My only complaint would be that it’s a 6 months past/future system, and that anything beyond that date range doesn’t exist. I’m not too sure how Airtable devs could implement recurring date periods, but I would absolutely subscribe to that methodology if it existed!

Thanks again Airtable!! Awesome to finally see this.

EDIT: Worth mentioning, I’ve asked Airtable support this morning to consider adding reoccurring dates features, considering now that we have both Timeline and Calendar views. There’s a couple of ways they could go about implementing reoccurring dates, one idea would be “Yearless” dates, or, year-year range dates, so that;

15/06 - 25/07 would be a reoccurring date in both past and future to infinity of 15th June to 25th July
15/06/2020-2030 - 15/07/2020-2030 would be a reoccurring date that occurs between the years of 2020 through to 2030.

An example below of where reoccurring dates are desperately needed - it would allow me to represent seasons (and other very useful reoccurring things, such as when to sow, when flowers bloom, etc);

EDIT: Quick update, without reoccurring date functionality, I’m seeing if record keeping each yearly event will work/scale… it might, I will just need to find time to build it and see.

4 Likes

Thanks for the constant progress!
Is there going to be also a daily range view?

I love the timeline so much. Would it be possible to set it to show custom date ranges, or min-max? It’s useful to be able to see an entire project in a glance. I’d also love to be able to pivot it and see it vertically instead of horizontally. I’ve actually just done a novel planning session and got very excited showing everyone the timeline feature and the massive gap in the middle of my novel plan where nothing happens .

DUDE! +1 vote from me for this. this is genius. idk if its possible. but if it is, its genius. in the meantime I use datetime_format(today(), ‘06/15/YYYY’) But that just changes the year to the current year. not particularly intuitive.

2 Likes

Why is info so scattered on this site (a problem with other sites also). Why is the info here different from here, and not exactly the same?: https://support.airtable.com/hc/en-us/articles/4408658892567-Timeline-View-Overview

Info should be centralized into one helpful place. All this scattered info is making the info on all the different things very confusing. Whoever is in charge of all this, please fix all this and centralized all the info. Thanks!

Also hope that outdated info are updated and moved to a centralized place.

So I finally got round to test out the Timeline view and I am loving it so so much :smiling_face_with_three_hearts: I am a huge fan of visualizing my work-related as well as personal plans so this is really up my alley. Ok, so my Airtable records are all organized. Now I might consider organizing my acutal life, hahah :sweat_smile:

Anyway, great job, you guys! :pray:

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This is a community forum. Real people who power use the product provide the content here. Not airtable.

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As @Rebecca_Elam pointed out, you are comparing a support site that is owned, controlled, and curated by Airtable – with a freewheeling conversational site designed for fast and flexible assistance and thought-provoking collaboration. These are two fundamentally different ideas that each serve unique purposes.

Yeah, like the Internet, right? :wink: Um, wrong. The reason the Internet works so well is partly because it is the opposite of centralized. Can you imagine the human capital required to curate every message in this community such that it is non-redundant with easily discoverable topics and fast navigation to answers? Tens of thousands of hours perhaps and who would pay for such an investment?

Yahoo tried this in 1994 (and failed by 2004) to organize and centralize the Interwebs. Google ate their lunch with a search model that embraced the chaos. This is precisely why I harvest all of the important communities (to me) and use ElasticSearch to find the context (and data) that I want.

In my view, information should not be centralized; rather, it should be surrounded by smart systems that transform it into knowledge. Literally, this information should find you when you need it most.