Import History

We've been working on developing and enabling relational data tables for the past few months and have been releasing small changes every few weeks that get us closer to launching data tables that you can link to one another. One of the major features we've rolled out is allowing you to update records in data tables and this is a pretty big change from how users previously interacted with data tables. Previously, users were able to delete data table data using the Manage Import section. Now, users have to bulk select any rows they want to delete and click the delete button. 

One of the major reasons for this change is getting us closer to relational data tables. Say someone has a table of schools and a table of students. If someone wants to delete a row from a list of schools, it could affect the table of students, leaving some with no school identified. For that kind of multi-table data destruction, we have decided that we must make people click through delete warnings about destroying relational linkages. It will not be something people can do by clicking Delete on an import.

You might ask, "well could we at least have the ability to delete rows by deleting imports where the rows aren't linked?"

This isn't an option either. Users can now modify rows by importing data. Previously they could only create rows by importing data. There's not a good answer for what should happen when you delete a file from the import history that was used to modify rows. Deleting those rows doesn't make sense, and we're unable to make it work like an "undo" because people could interact with a row many times in various ways. Say you had a single cell that got updated like this:

Created by import > Changed online > Changed online again > Modified with an import > Changed online again.

What would deleting that second import do? Maybe nothing, maybe it would revert to how it was right before that import. Either way, we don't have the machinery to track these changes row by row and revert to other states.

This all means that modifying rows through an import cannot be undone, and it means that people must deliberately select rows to delete to see warnings about what links might be destroyed.


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