Filling Text Elements with dynamic content from any collection

We have a base in Airtable where we have created text templates for almost all our needs and applications. These range from text snippets to our Privacy Agreement.

It would be most useful if I could plug those text elements dynamically into a text element where ever I need it.

I am on a blank page for example. When I place a text element on that page, I can only plug in dynamic content from the “logged in user”, “relative dates” and “utility values”.

I could create a link between the user collection and the text table, but then I would have to constantly add new text records to that linked field for all users.

When I place a collection element on any page, I can choose which collection to connect it to. All imported bases and tables are available to choose from.

I imagine my ask to work in a similar way. I can connect to any collection of my choice and then choose a record based on filter criteria.

This would save us massive time as we are constantly moving around updating text elements manually. And eventually we will start missing text that we have placed somehwere.


I REALLY resonate with this! I’ve put countless “utility fields” (as I call them) as well as linked fields in my users table so that I can display various objective/transcendent data to my users. But it’s not convenient to have it in the users table since you have to keep those links up to date, and it’s just not as clean as allowing you to use any collection the way you described.

+1 from me! :smiley:

Interesting suggestion - choosing which record in the collection would be the tricky part… if you have any idea of how that would look I’d be open to hearing it.

As a suggestion, the single-record layout of a collection sort allows you to choose this.

Say you setup a “Utility Data Table” you can add a collection for that and then add filters to show the specific utility data row (maybe it’s based on the user type or some…?)

Then you have access to that record.

I guess I’m struggling a little bit to understand why these static pieces of text (like a privacy agreement…) need to be dynamic?

First as to the why:

We constantly update text elements. Not necessarily the privacy agreement, but loads of other texts get fine tuned on an ongoing basis. As we have a growing number of pages that provide information only (as opposed to records) we use text elements to provide that information. And very of those text blocks are a composition of different standard elements from our library.

And even on some record pages, we use text elements as opposed to the record detail elements simply because it looks nice to see information through text elements (vs. “database fields”). An on those pages we often place additional information, unrelated to the record, that would be pulled from that text library.

Will continue with the “how” input later today…

This is how this could work at the most flexible level.

  • I place a text element.
  • When I click in the markdown box in the builder, the usual box for dynamic elements appears.
  • In the section of “Utility Values”, there is an additional building block : Let’s call it Universal Text.
  • I click on the universal text block and it gets placed in the markdown window, just like all the other elements.
  • This element however has the typical “gear” symbol in it.
  • When I click on the gear symbol, a dialog box opens.
  • The dialogue box lets me choose a collection from my data sources, a record from that collection and finally any field that I want the building block to display as text.
  • In addition I can give the element a name for easy recognition in my markdown window.

And this Universal Text Block could be available wherever I can use the Utility Values. This way I would have the power of that element available anywhere.

Sounds easy enough :slight_smile:

And now… go!

Just food for thought.

@darragh Any thoughts about the feasibility?