URL--Text to Display Feature

It’s great to hear there’s progress forthcoming.

But I would like to add that product management is a really key influencer in growing the customer base by ensuring priorities are carefully measured. For example …

A feature such as bold/italic text, while needed and certainly expected, is just one feature. In contrast - stark contrast actually - is a string method like Split() which has vast and deep-reaching impact on the ability to create new features and solve many data management challenges. Split() would resolve more than two dozen “feature” shortcomings of the product.

Product management should have ranked the importance of Split() (which was requested a full half-decade ago) well above a web clipper and perhaps more critical than bold/italic text.

This is the difference between features that help and features that help people help themselves, the latter of which tend to be boundless.


Thanks for the heads up!

Not to belabor a point, but that beta is not just making bold/italic text and solves the request at hand (“pretty urls”). I say this for the benefit of someone reading this thread which has now veered into unrelated feature requests.

Indeed, my intention is not to distract from the featured requested. This is an important one as well - one that I also need desperately.

+1 Please release this feature, it will make the table easy to read.

was this ever implemented? I have url links in my table. The table is displayed on webapp. I wish the visitors on my webappp see only a text instead of the url. Is this possible yet?

was this ever implemented? I have url links in my table. The table is displayed on webapp. I wish the visitors on my webappp see only a text instead of the url. Is this possible yet?

If by “this” you mean the ability to split a string into an array, no.

If by “my web app” you mean a custom web app that display links stored in Airtable, Split() has nothing to do with how you render links on a custom web app.

Instead of rendering raw link values in your web app, simply use HTML to display a label.

< a href='[airtableLinkValue]'>[label]</a>

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The URL Text to Display feature hasn’t been officially added yet, it is still in beta. You can sign up for the beta using the link below, which will give you access to the feature (with some other ancillary features as well). I have no idea of the timeline for when they make the feature official.

A note: this is not for the URL field type. You’ll have a new field type available called Rich Text Fields, which will allow you to type in some text (i.e. “Click Here”), and when you highlight the text there’s an option to add a URL to it.


Thanks !
Looks like a solution, i’ve just filled the form :slight_smile:

Thank you! As a brand new Airtable user who’s taking it for a test drive for a bigger project next year, this was the first clearly missing feature I ran into. Glad it’s on the way. I just signed up for the beta.

Thanks Bill. Unfortunately it wont work because I am displaying the airtable on my webpage.

There are two ways to display the data in a table on a web page - (i) embedding it, and (ii) rendering the content with the API. Which approach are you using?

We are embedding it, using the share form link, please see attached images. I appreciate your response.
Sorry for the delay, I wanted to create a sample for you.

Understood - and in that case, you have no choice except to display the features that exist in Airtable.

I understand. Please re-read Kamille’s response.

Thank you. i appreciate your time.

I had a look at the RTF field type. This is a weak option at best. If you had a table with several thousand URL records, you would need to convert them manually (unless I’m missing something here). Also you are not be able to dynamically alter the link based on other criteria. This new field type doesn’t negate the requirement for a real HYPERLINK function.

Agreed, but the beta addresses some of the use cases mentioned in this thread, which is why I brought it up. I’d still like a url function for formula fields.

You’re not missing anything; using the rich-text field is simply one of many workarounds that one might use to transform what is otherwise a user-unfriendly display into something more friendly.

We must remember though, that Airtable is more like a database and less like a spreadsheet. We can hope and expect the tool to perform to our definition of spreadsheet, but there are specific design choices that the Airtable team made to address other data management requirements.

At the root of this topic is a design choice that is not entirely obvious and surrounds the lack of in-place transformations.

Most data systems that claim spreadsheet-like functionality support in-place transformations - i.e., a cell or column may contain both the data and a different rendering that is a function of the data. This is not possible in Airtable and why we tend to see a number of additional - seemingly redundant - rendering fields - i.e., data in one column and a transformed representation of that data in an adjacent column.

This is what I detest most about Airtable. It lacks the ability to perform in-place transformations and computations.

We don’t need a hyperlink function - rather, I believe we need the pervasive ability to perform in-place transformations for all fields. This will eliminate many issues that are well-documented in this community and things such as transforming a URL into a clickable name value will become inherently possible.

The rich text field type is a good workaround for displaying text for static links. I’m not clear whether this works for formulae, though. Eg. if you’re programmatically building a link in a formula field, I think you’re stuck with an ugly long link (no ability to set the display text) - as far as I can see!