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Great news! We’ve just enabled this feature for everyone. Check out Mikayla’s post below for more info.
After creating a view that contained a default sort, I expected that sort order to be maintained automatically. I understand that in some cases it’s nice to be able to flexibly change the order, but I’d like to be able to set a view to always sort in a particular order by default.
I have a table that contains expiration dates. I have a view that sorts by expiration date. If I add a new record to the table, the new record is added to the bottom of the table, but that means it’s also added to the bottom of the expiration date view, so every time I open that view I have to manually re-apply the sort order.
That’s a good idea! “Live sorting”, similar to the way we already have “live filtering” today, is on our medium-term roadmap. Thank you for the feedback.
Count me in as another vote for this functionality. :relaxed:
I recall how happy I was when FileMaker Pro added this option (“Keep Records Sorted”) a few versions back. I was about to report this as a bug but Airtable’s excellent forum software brought this feature-request thread to my attention.
Anyway, +1 to the OP’s request.
As a minimum it would be useful if the sort occurred when you re-open the base then the view. This does not happen in iOS not sure about web.
Thanks for the request on how you’d like re-sorting to behave (we love very specific feedback!). As it stands there are a number of nontrivial design considerations when it comes to implementing live sorting (one example: how would it interplay with our collaboration features?) Nevertheless, this is still on our roadmap. :slightly_smiling_face:
I’m not following why live sorting is such a complex concept - what airtable’s current implementation of sorting seems to be missing is that for most users, sorting is going to matter in the display of records, not in the storage of them.
Consider how filters work - if I add a record while on a view and the record should be filtered from the view, as soon as I add the record it disappears. Similarly, if I add a record elsewhere, as soon as I go to my view, the items in the filter are correct. Sorting should be exactly the same - there are lots of use cases where (again, because views are about displaying records) maintaining a standard sort order matters; on the other hand, I can’t think of a single use case where the current behavior (maintaining an arbitrary sort order) makes sense. Maybe one - where there isn’t a logical sort order based on the contents of the rows and instead a user wants to move rows up and down manually. In that case, it would be very easy to simply maintain the “last order of rows” only when a specific sort order isn’t specified (or even to “toggle sort order off” in a view if the user manually moves rows around).
It’s especially silly that filters and sorting don’t work the same way because they’re right next to each other in the UI.
Thanks for the feedback! As Emmett and Kat have mentioned, it’s on our roadmap, and we certainly appreciate the value of this feature.
There’s some technical differences in how difficult it is to perform live sorts vs live filters (for instance, because sorting is a more heavyweight operation than filtering, which can be calculated for each row independently, whereas sorts are by definition relative to all other rows in the table). This is exacerbated in situations where, for instance, multiple people may be modifying large numbers of rows at once (by copying and pasting values into a cell range that affects a sort, or just rapidly modifying many rows in quick succession in a very large table, etc).
Beyond the technicalities, there are also usability/interface questions involved. We’ve encountered many use cases where someone does want to apply a one-time sort and then manually order or insert rows in an arbitrary position. Some other examples of issues to consider:
Again, it’s a valid feature request, but as with every feature, we want to thoroughly consider its design before implementation to ensure that our product remains intuitive and friendly for all.
I work at a car dealership and I’m creating views of cars in stock, that are added to via forms, and predominantly accessed by people with read-only access. They often print out our stock lists (which are sorted by make and then model of a car), but as it stands there’s no way I can make it so that the cars stay sorted automatically.
Please see the attached mockup screenshot as a potential way to implement persistent sorting - would love for you to consider this.
Plus one for this. I’ve been meaning to put this request in for persistent sorting. I would go one step further to say that the checkbox isn’t actually necessary. The application should persist sorting if sorting filters are present. If sorting isn’t necessary, then the user can always remove a sorting filter from the view.