Possible to Automate the Creation of Linked Records?


I am working on documenting a language.

I have a base with two tables.

The primary field for the first table is “Words”.
Examples of records in this field: Car, Day

The primary field for the second table is “Phrases”.
Examples of records in this field: new car, fast car, cloudy day, day of rest

I want to create a linked field on the first table so that I can see all the phrases that contain the word.

So, in the row for “car”, I want a record that will show me “new car” and “fast car”.

I know how to link tables. It’s quite easy.

I want to know if it’s possible to automate this.

Right now, it’s quite cumbersome. I have to go into the linked field and manually add all the phrases that I want.

I want to automate this so whenever a phrase is added on the second table that has a certain word in it (that matches to a word on the first table), it will automatically pop up in the linked field on the first table.

Is this possible? If so, how can I accomplish this?
Thank you very much in advance for any help!



There may be a way to do this using the help of an integration service like Zapier or Integromat. Aside from that, the best I can come up with involves a slight change to your process. Rather than manually build links from the [Words] table to the [Phrases] table, work the other way around, and let Airtable help with the link building.

In your [Phrases] table, add a formula field (I called mine {Split}) that replaces the spaces in your phrases with comma-space combos, like so:

SUBSTITUTE(Phrases, " ", ", ")

Next to this, add a link field that points to your [Words] table, and which allows for linking to multiple records. We’ll get to that in a moment.

Now start filling up your main {Phrases} field as you like, watching the split phrases appear in the adjacent field:


Once you’ve got a bunch of phrases built, copy the contents of the relevant entries in the {Split} field, and paste them into the adjacent field linking to your [Words] table. The end result should look like this:


Now jump to your [Words] table, and each word will be linked to the relevant phrases. Airtable will even make new records for words that didn’t previously exist. When I started this, I only had a “car” record. Airtable added the other three:


It’s still a manual process, but now it’s just copying and pasting from one field to another, and letting Airtable take care of the links.


Combining several 'multiple select' columns


Thank you so much!

I’m extremely grateful. I was able to apply your solution quite easily! The one manual step involved isn’t all that onerous.

Thanks again.