December 30, 2022
Highlighting a number of high value improvements in the Builder, Live App, and overall Performance for December, 2022.
--> Knack Builder Usability Improvements:
Consistent UI in the builder
There is now a cohesive experience when changing between contexts initiated by the left menu bar to improve the consistency when switching between objects, fields, records, and tasks.
Modern Live App setting
New apps now have the Modern setting enabled by default - no need to remember to switch from the Legacy view any longer.
All view names can be edited now, without requiring reaching out to Support for assistance.
Some views in the Builder preview are unavailable. To help customers locate these views and reduce confusion if they've added a view and forgotten it existed, we have included a badge element in the top bar similar to how we display the number of tasks that exist on an object, e.g. "Views (2)".
Warning and Error Messages
We’ve been updating user-facing messages to ensure they are clear with the message they are conveying and ensuring their placement is appropriate for where they are displayed.
Old ----> New
We moved the Layout setting out of the “Add Details” section, and into the “Design Settings” section, and with a more descriptive name: Details Layout. The following views all have a separate section for editing/customizing the “details” item portion of the view:
Menu View Design Settings
We’re excited to announce another platform update ! You can now update the style of your menu views with more modern design options. This feature will look and feel familiar to anyone who has begun using View Link Styles.
All filters and rules that are based on date and/or time fields have consistent and expected behavior and results.
Multiple Choice Change Warnings
When a multiple choice field has a change in text, for example, changing “Customer Succes” to “Customer Success”, any fields, rules, or filters will still be looking for the original “Customer Succes”. The user now is aware of this, when previously, there was no prompt to check other areas.
Field Setting Changes
Previously, changing certain field types to a new field type would cause the complete deletion of all data. Although there was a warning, customers would not always read it and hit save, then have to work with Support to restore as much as possible.
We’ve made the save button inactive until the customer explicitly gives consent that they understand the effects of this type of change.
Wording update for Payments
Almost every new user we observed was wary of and unclear if “Payments” in the builder referred to their Knack billing or something else. We updated the wording from “Enable Payments” to “Enable Customer Payments” so it’s clear that enabling this allows them to accept payments, like Stripe or PayPal, from customers.
Reordering tasks and embed codes
Previously, tasks and embed codes were ordered based on when they were created, and not on anything else, and it was not possible to reorder them. When there are many embed codes and tasks, especially those that are dependent on each other, reordering (by dragging and dropping) allows users to make sure they can just understand their structures at a glance.
After searching for more than one keyword, the search would completely reset back to an empty state, causing twice the amount of input required from users. Now, the search field and records reflect the results as expected.
Table headers not sticking
Table headers in Live App views now have a true sticky header behavior when the table scrolls.
--> Custom UX Improvements:
New Embed Code Options
We’ve added options to include font options and different options for displaying headers, header backgrounds, and header menus.
Some Knack customers host their own websites instead of using a knack-hosted domain. Generating embed code from the application builder allows them to paste an auto-generated HTML snippet onto their website’s source code, so they can use the full power of the Knack database. We’re offering more flexibility around styling and formatting options for their header and page menus, to easily customize the look and feel of sites by using options in Knack, instead of needing to use custom CSS.
--> Performance & Reliability Improvements:
Over the past 6 weeks we've implemented a more holistic application monitoring system, and based on some of the performance improvements made in the platform, we've seen a 27.5% overall reduction in response times.
Join the conversation and provide feedback on these features and our roadmap in our community forum.
New settings have been added to your menu and table views based on your requests!
Another live app design update is here! Now you can customize the style of each table and menu view in your app without custom coding. It works similarly to the recently released global menu view design settings.
The new settings can be accessed from the view settings. This update is another step towards making your life easier, and we hope that you enjoy using it as much as we enjoyed building it.
Find out more about this feature in our knowledge base, and share your feedback in our community forum.
We’re excited to announce another live app design update! You can now update the style of your menu views with more modern design options. This feature will look and feel familiar to anyone who has begun using View Link Styles.
Learn more about the new settings in our knowledge base, and share your feedback in our community forum.
We're happy to announce the release of a new design setting for your live app views. You can now update the style of page links, action links and delete links by customizing the formatting, color, border, size, text and icons.
Read more about the feature in our knowledge base, and share your feedback here!
If you live and/or operate in an applicable U.S. jurisdiction you will see sales tax included on your invoices and payments moving forward.
What if I don’t live in an applicable jurisdiction?
You don’t live in an applicable jurisdiction if:
If any of these scenarios apply, you will not see sales tax included on your invoices and payments moving forward.
What if I’m tax-exempt?
You can check your exemption status with Knack in the Billing section of the Knack dashboard. If you have not yet been setup as exempt with Knack but are a tax-exempt organization, as identified by the IRS, you can apply for tax exemption with Knack here.
You can read more about how Knack manages sales tax and tax exemption here. If you have any questions about sales tax or your Knack invoices/payments please feel free to reach out to email@example.com.
We’re happy to announce that you can now create column summaries for the table results in your search views. This functionality previously only existed in table views, and now we’ve expanded the column summaries feature to search views as well.
You can find our updated documentation here to read more about using column summaries.
Let us know what you think here.
You can now manage your page’s login settings directly from the page while editing. You no longer have to access and open the login view to see who can access your page.
This means you can quickly check who can view the page you are working on and jump to the page permissions for quick edits. Not only is this great for ease of use and speed, but it allows you to be more confident in which users have access to that page.
Read more and give us your feedback here!
App Login Settings: Provides in-app education and link to learn more about login settings in our knowledge base.
We are excited to announce that field keys are now available directly in the Builder for easy access! You can now display and search field keys in the Schema section of your Builder.
To display the field keys, click the ID icon to toggle on field keys. Once they are toggled on you can search the field keys in the Builder and view the field keys alongside the field names for each field.
You can find our updated documentation here and here to read more about using fields and field keys.
Let us know what you think here!
On 10/21/2021, we will release the update for the builder to support the new storage method. The live application, however, will continue to load custom code using the original storage method.
On 10/28/2021, we will release the update for the live application. It will now use the new storage method to load the custom code.
Are there any breaking changes?
Only if you are accessing your custom code outside of the builder or live app through undocumented means. Because the code is no longer in the schema, it will no longer be found in Knack.app.attributes.settings
If you still require access to your code outside of the builder or live app, you’ll be able to access it through the CDN once this goes live:
Do I need to make any changes to the custom code before this release?
No, you will not need to make changes to the custom code. It will continue to work as it was prior to this release.
Am I going to lose access to the code editor in the Builder?
No, the code editor will continue to be available. This update will only change how your custom code is stored.
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out here or to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Now that the dust has settled after the release of our new builder, we’ve started shifting resources to improving our Live App. Our improvements will cover everything from modernizing the Live App design and accessibility, to adding more design customizations and new features.
First Up, Table Design Improvements
Our Live App improvements have already begun with the recent release of our improved table design options. You can now control:
So what's our plan for further updates? (Hint: this is important!)
The table design improvements are just the beginning. In order to make innovative updates to the Live App, this means some improvements will introduce breaking changes. With that in mind, any upgrades to our Live App design and markup have to be done very carefully and transparently. This is why we are sharing our plan early so we can hear your feedback and work together to keep everyone’s best interests in mind.
Read more about our Live App improvement plans and give your feedback here!
We are excited to announce two big updates! Over the past few months, we have been working hard to refresh our Community Forum and our Builder Network with you in mind.
We are excited to introduce our new Knack Community Forum. Our goal is always to empower you with the right tools to build great apps, and a part of that is creating a community where you can collaborate with other Knack Customers, Knack Partner Experts, and the Knack Team.
With the new Knack Community Forum you can:
Our new Expert Network is a fresh take on our old Builder Network and full of trusted Knack Experts ready to help you turn your idea into reality.
Whether you need help with the entire process, some advice to get started, or support along the way, Knack Experts can help you go further, faster. So you have more time to focus on your core business while they focus on building your app.
What's new in the Knack Expert Network?
In addition to our design refresh, we added a new category for support and training. This is perfect if you want a dedicated resource that can offer tailored support based on a deeper understanding of your apps and goals.
What can Knack Experts help with?
Knack Experts can help with as little or as much as you’d like. They will work with you one-on-one to:
We hope you are as excited about the new forum and Expert Network as we are! We are continuously looking for ways to improve and empower the Knack community, so we would love to hear what you think!
Now you can resize the toolbox on the left side of the Builder to custom widths. This allows you to easily navigate building your app, giving you more room while you are using features like page rules, view settings, and more.
Copy & Move Views: The process for copying and moving views has been improved. You can now copy or move views on any page that is eligible to support the view and source combination while changing the view source to be compatible with the target page.
As of late summer, 2021 Knack will begin to calculate and collect sales tax on applicable accounts. Currently, Knack will only collect sales tax for accounts located in US states that require sales tax collection on the sale of SaaS products, like Knack.
If you are a tax-exempt organization as identified by the IRS, you can apply for tax exemption with Knack. You can check your tax-exempt status from the Billing section of your Dashboard.
You can read more about how Knack manages sales tax and tax exemption here. If you have any questions please don’t hesitate to reach out!
You can now search field names directly in the Builder while building! If you have a larger app and find yourself scrolling through a long list of fields, you will find this especially helpful. Easily search for a specific field when working in the Objects section of your Builder.
As of May 1st, 2021, all Knack apps (with the exception of Private Server customers) are now using the new Builder.
Thousands of Knack customers have already been using the new Builder to build successful apps for months. During that time we have been incorporating their feedback and now we are excited to share that with all of our customers!
If you haven’t already had a chance to learn about the new Builder, you can read more about all the new features and improvements here.
If you have any questions don’t hesitate to let us know!
One of our top priorities has been improving performance and in 2021 alone we’ve reduced the average page load time in the new Builder by 42%! In addition to our performance focus, we have continued to incorporate your feedback as we make improvements.
With that said, wanted to remind you that on May 1st, 2021 all apps will be upgraded to the new Knack Builder and the old Builder will no longer be available. This applies to all customers with the expectation of customers on private servers which will be migrated separately at a future date.
If you haven’t enabled the new Builder yet, you can do so on any app in your Dashboard. You can learn more about getting started with the new Builder here.
We’ve fixed a ton of bugs, we’ve improved performance, and we’ve incorporated a bunch of your feedback. It’s time to launch this rocket!
On May 1st, 2021 all apps will be upgraded to the new Knack Builder. This means on that date your apps will load using the new Knack Builder and the old Builder will no longer be available.
If you haven’t enabled the new Builder yet, you can do so on any app in your Dashboard. Read more here.
If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us at email@example.com
Details views now support preset layout options. From the details settings, layouts can be selected to split details into different two column layouts.
Pairing these layouts with field grouping will allow you to display even more record information horizontally.
Learn more about details view layout and grouping here.
Back by popular demand, you can now add a new view linked from a menu view! This option is available as a checkbox when adding a new view in the toolbox.
With this option checked, when your new view is added to your app, a menu view is added first which links to your new view on a child page.
We are excited to officially announce the new Knack Builder! After a successful beta period the new Builder is now live!
Packed with new features, improvements and a more intuitive interface, the new Builder is already being leveraged by hundreds of Knack users to more easily build and administer their apps.
To switch to the new Knack Builder, sign in to your Knack Dashboard and enable the “Use New Builder” toggle on any app.
For a deeper dive, you can also find the complete knowledge base for the new Builder at learn.knack.com or watch our New Builder Q&A webinar recordings.
If you have any questions or feedback don’t hesitate to reach out in the messenger in the Builder or to firstname.lastname@example.org.
Image fields now support automatic image resizing when the image is uploaded. This means you can automatically resize images to a web friendly size or a custom size when they are uploaded. This is great for ensuring all images are a uniform size and reducing the over all storage in the app.
You are now able to use rules to append or remove values from multiple choice fields or connection fields without overwriting the existing values. These rule actions are available on conditional rules, scheduled tasks, record rules and action links.
For example, when an approval form is submitted, you could use a record rule to append the “approved” tag without overwriting the existing tags.
We are excited to announce table record rules! You can now trigger record rules on tables while inline editing. These rules can update the record being edited, insert a new connected record, update a connected record or send a custom email.
These record rules are similar to form record rules and can be used to do things like track which user last updated a record, send an email when a record is updated or update/insert connected records when a status has changed.
You can now expand and collapse all views in the page preview at once. This allows you to easily see the full page preview with expanded views then quickly collapse all views to get back to easily navigating your app while you work in the Builder.
Improved View Name Editing: You can now edit view names directly in the page preview. We know how helpful internal view names can be when building and maintaining your app, so our goal was to make these easily accessible. You can show and hide view names by using the tag icon in the top menu. When view names are shown, you can edit by clicking on the individual view name in the preview.
When inline editing is enabled on table views, you can now add filters to connection lookups. This will allow you to filter which options are available for your users to choose while editing inline, similar to the options available in a form input. For example filtering by connected records with an active status so users can only choose from active records.
By popular demand, you can now trigger record rules when the value of a field has changed. You can also get more precise by defining when a field has changed to or from a specific value. This is a great way to trigger notifications or alerts if you want to know whenever a critical field value has changed.
We added new tools for adding and removing fields to your views. You can now remove all fields directly from the preview, or add all the fields from either the preview or the left toolbox. You can also now add a new field directly from the left toolbox without having to navigate back to your object.
Improved Connections in Equations: We simplified adding connected fields to equations and made it more clear which connection you're using.
You can now use a description to add more context to a field when the name isn't enough. We've seen requests to use descriptions as internal notes when apps get complicated, or to further explain a field name (like if you use abbreviations).
You'll now see a description input when editing a field. When added, these descriptions will show up as information icons in your field list and record columns. Hovering over the icon reveals the description.
We're also considering adding the ability to use these for tooltips in the live app.
You often want to edit your field formats when you see how they work with your records. In the old builder this meant constantly clicking back and forth between your fields and records. In the new builder we're making this much easier.
First up is editing fields from the columns in your builder records. Along with a field icon you'll now see a dropdown menu that provides field options without having to navigate to your schema.
Similar to the above, you can now add new fields while viewing your records without having to go to the schema first.
Improved "Add View" wizard: We went back to the drawing board on the best way to add a new view, and we're really proud of the results. Our main goal was to make adding views really clear, particularly in those complex cases where you're working with objects two connections away. For example, if you want to add a view that displays records from one object connected to another object that then connects to the logged-in user, it can be a lot to process 😅. With the new builder we've completely overhauled the wizard so you are only dealing with one step at a time, and each choice is very clear.
Improved connection clarity: Here's an example of adding a view when you may have multiple connections between the same objects to pick from. In the current builder it's a bit of a mess. Now it only displays when a choice is required and its obvious exactly which connection you're choosing. Otherwise connections stay out of the way.
Improved child page creation: We've also improved child page creation when adding a new table or list. You can automatically add links to child pages with multiple views. This is more flexible than the current builder—there's no limit on the types of views or how many you can add to the child page.
One of our most requested features has been the ability to create more flexible layouts for pages.
We'll be adding additional functionality to columns and page layouts based on initial feedback we receive.
Improved Imports: We completely overhauled our import wizard in the new builder. We've made it easier to map your spreadsheet columns to your Knack fields, as well as create new fields with specific formats. We've also added features to make it easier to work with connections.