AppsScriptPulse

TU5 Special: First Look at Building AppSheet Automations Using the New Google Forms Integration

In this TU Special, we dive into the exciting new features coming to Google AppSheet and take a first look at the new Google Forms integration. For this special our co-host, Martin Hawksey is joined by Steve Franks (Head of Workspace Engineering, CTS Appsbroker). The discussion/demo was originally presented as an internal tech talk conducted at CTS Appsbroker – warning the episode contains some ‘passionate’ language.

Initial key takeaways which we discuss are:

  • Seamless Data Collection: Google Forms now acts as a first-class data source for AppSheet, eliminating the need for workarounds and additional add-ons. Data collected through forms automatically flows into AppSheet, creating a smooth and efficient workflow.
  • External Participation: The integration allows external parties to interact with your apps by simply filling out a Google Form. This opens up new possibilities for data collection and process involvement.
  • Powerful Automations: AppSheet’s automation capabilities can be triggered by form submissions, enabling you to create sophisticated workflows. The example discussed involves sending an email with an embedded AppSheet view upon form completion, allowing for approvals or further actions within the email itself.
  • Simplified Development: The integration makes building apps even easier, especially for those already familiar with Google Forms. The need for complex configurations or AppScripts is minimized, empowering users to focus on the business logic and desired outcomes.
  • Versatility: AppSheet has increased functionality, opening up a wider range of possibilities for app development and automation for Google Workspace customers. It can be used to create full-fledged apps with user interfaces or simply act as a behind-the-scenes automation engine.

Overall, the integration of Google Forms and AppSheet should significantly help empower users to build powerful solutions without coding expertise. Read more about “Build AppSheet automations using Google Forms” on the Google Workspace Updates blog.

Source: TU5 Special: First Look at Building AppSheet Automations Using the New Google Forms Integration

Changes to drive.google.com/uc URLs which break embedding images/files from Google Drive in your websites and AppSheet apps

Google Drive broke the ability to embed images with the /uc path. Here’s how to embed images from Google Drive in your website.

Previously Google Workspace developers could use a /uc path for embedding images and other files hosted in Google Drive. For example, images could be embedded in websites and emails using markup like:

<img src="https://drive.google.com/uc?export=view&id=1234567890abcdef" />

To my knowledge this was never an officially documented endpoint, but widely known about and shared within the community. Back in October 2023 Google announced Upcoming changes to third-party cookie requirements in Google Drive, which has started rolling out from the beginning of 2024.

The impact of this change is it breaks /uc embeds and these have started returning 403 errors. There is no reference to the /uc endpoint in the original announcement, which is why I think many people are only just finding out about the impact now. Google’s official guidance is to move to <iframe> with Google Drive publish and preview links. This post from Justin Poehnelt discusses the options and limitations for images.

There has also just been another announcement in the AppSheet community that Drive download URLs for embeddable content to be updated by May 1st, 2024. This is an extended window for AppSheet users and where possible Google will be emailing affected app owners where /uc urls have been detected. This announcement includes a link to a help page with tips for finding /uc occurrences in your AppSheet apps.

Source: Embed images from Google Drive in your website | Justin Poehnelt

Unlock the power of your data with no-code! Join the CTS AppSheet Hackathon at the Google London 08 February 2024 

Be part of our AppSheet Hackathon Series in 2024! Join us at the Google office in London for this in-person event in February. Find out more.

My employer CTS/Appsbroker is hosting a free AppSheet Hackathon in Google Office in London on 08 February 2024. This in-person event is the first of four we are planning this year designed to bring both new and existing AppSheet users together to learn and share.

For new users there will be a guided ‘no-code along’ to help you get started, followed by a hackathon with on-hand support. You can find out more including registration by following the link (if you are able to attend my tip would be bring a work colleague as this will help you bottom out your business use cases). I’ll be attending the event so if you are able to attend please come and say ‘hi’.

Source: AppSheet Hackathon – CTS

The democratisation of app development with Duet AI for AppSheet

From one simple prompt with Duet AI for AppSheet you are able to create a well structured application.

I recently had the pleasure of the opportunity to speak at DevFest Scotland. My topic was how you can use code with Google’s ‘no-code’ solution AppSheet. You can see some of the ways this is achievable in my shared slides. Whilst there are coding opportunities with AppSheet and having some coding/data schema knowledge is useful, I would argue that this is increasingly becoming less important.

In this post on the CTS Medium I share how Duet AI for AppSheet has hugely reduced the entry point for app creation. As part of this I share how a simple request to the Duet AI for AppSheet assistant of ‘an easy way for volunteers to borrow a laptop’ becomes the starting point for a well structured application. Having introduced AppSheet to a number of customers I can’t emphasise enough how big a step this is in the democratisation of app creation. Exciting times!

[Thanks to Christian Schalk and the AppSheet team for early access to Duet AI for AppSheet and providing input on the source post].

Source: The democratisation of app development with Duet AI for AppSheet

Discovering Google AppSheet in 48 hours | Part 4 (Actions, Assistants and Automations)

An intense 48-hour tour of AppSheet, Google’s flagship nocode tool, from the perspective of a newcomer to the platform (part 4/4).

The forth and final part in Pablo Felip’s AppSheet in 48 hours series 😟. I’m sure there will be more from Pablo on AppSheet, but the rumour is he’ll be next publishing some Apps Script posts.

For the final part Pablo discusses the different types of actions available in AppSheet, including system actions and user-defined actions, and how to use them to create custom functionality in apps. There is a lot you can do with actions from writing data, navigation and more.

Something else touched upon in Pablo’s post is the intelligent assistant available throughout AppSheet. Using the assistant to help you create actions can also save you a lot of time, particular with toggling actions for yes/no checkboxes. If you can find the good way to describe what you want the assistant can handle creating the action, related icons and behaviour to toggle the appearance of one of the actions.

Follow the source link to find out more…

Source: Discovering Google AppSheet in 48 hours | Part 4

Discovering Google AppSheet in 48 hours | Part 3 – (Slice, dice, filtered and viewed)

An intense 48-hour tour of AppSheet, Google’s flagship nocode tool, from the perspective of a newcomer to the platform (part 3/4).

It’s the third part of Pablo Felip’s AppSheet in 48 hours series. Christian Schalk has already post an announcement in the AppsSheet community which gives a great summary of this latest episode:

Here are some of key view centric topics covered:

  • A thorough introduction to Views, including their position (Primary, Menu, Reference), as well as user defined vs. and auto-generated. There’s also coverage on the new visual editing feature introduced in August!
  • Building custom views based on data slices, including coverage on performance implications between security filters and data slices.
  • As well as coverage on conditional formatting, including making view-aware expressions with the CONTEXT function.
  • And more!

The post is packed with lots of great tips, highlighting some of the key features and approaches for designing your AppSheet app.

Source: Discovering Google AppSheet in 48 hours | Part 3

Discovering Google AppSheet in 48 hours | Part 2 (Formula and Expressions)

 

An intense 48-hour tour of AppSheet, Google’s flagship nocode tool, from the perspective of a newcomer to the platform (part 2/4).

The second part in Pablo Felip’s in ‘Discovering Google AppSheet in 48 hours’ series. This post focuses on the AppSheet formula language which are similar to formula/functions you would use in spreadsheets. As highlighted in Pablo’s post ‘expressions’ can be used in numerous places in AppSheet not only to calculate new values but also control your AppSheet app behaviour and functionality.

An area I often struggle with is handling data lists. Pablo’s post walk you through from basic list operations to more complex list filtering and list operations such as combining and subtracting data. This and more is covered in the posted linked to below:

Source: Discovering Google AppSheet in 48 hours | Part 2

Discovering Google AppSheet in 48 hours | Part 1 (Data)

An intense 48-hour tour of AppSheet, Google’s flagship nocode tool, from the perspective of a newcomer to the platform (part 1/4).

When introducing people to AppSheet I like to remind them that whilst it is a no/low code solution, like many other products it still requires you factor in time to learn and understand the product. Spreadsheets are a great example of this there being aspects that are relatively intuitive but other areas like formulas where it requires time to understand how to best use them.

I find learning vicariously, through the eyes of others, helps me understand what other people value in a product. This first post in a series by Pablo Felip in ‘Discovering Google AppSheet in 48 hours’ is a great example of just that. There are three more parts to come, but in part 1 Pablo sets the scene sharing initial impressions and first learning from a weekend in AppSheet.

Perhaps not unsurprisingly data features heavily in this first post. What you want your app to do will often be based on the data you already have or the data you will need. The post also contains this useful reminder:

Google AppSheet is a “core” service of Google Workspace. It is therefore covered by the same legal umbrella as the other core services of this platform with respect to terms of use, security and privacy of the data processed.

Pablo’s next part should be published next week and hopfeully like me you’ll be following along.

Source: Discovering Google AppSheet in 48 hours | Part 1

How AppSheet can help with the security in the education industry (and how Duet AI for AppSheet can help)

AppSheet is one one more tool 🛠 for citizen developers and IT departments that helps automate concrete processes through a mobile-friendly and desktop UI’s.

In this post I’ll show you some AppSheet use-cases in the education industry, specifically how you can improve your school security using a simple app to keep the visits’s record and another app to automate and speed up the kids pick up.

In this post from Mozart García you can find out about some use cases for improving school security using AppSheet. The post includes an overview of apps for recording visits and pickups. You can find similar apps in the AppSheet template gallery (Visitor Check-ins and Curbside Pickup), but with Duet AI for AppSheet there will soon be the opportunity to build you apps with an GenAI assistant. Below is a quick example based on one of Mozart’s app descriptions:

Duet AI in AppSheet is currently only available to Google Workspace customers. Google are rolling it out to a small group of customers at first, and then we will make it available to everyone who is eligible. You can read more about Create apps in AppSheet using Duet AI assistance

 

Source: How Appsheet can help with the security in the education industry

[Event] Connected Workers: Using AppSheet to bring the frontline and head office together – Online October 19, 2023 at 14:00 UTC

Join us for an exciting showcase event with Google presenting an AppSheet demo developed to connect frontline workers with head office.

On October 19, 2023 at 14:00 UTC you can join me for a free online live webinar with Tony Martin, Google Workspace specialist and Dominic Parkes, Google Workspace Customer Engineer at Google to discuss a demo app created in Google AppSheet to help bring frontline/deskless workers and head office together more efficiently.

This session is an opportunity to discover how AppSheet can be used to make it easy to administer everyday business tasks such as: reporting sickness, managing shifts, payslips and HR records, onboarding and training. We’ll be discussing the benefits of using AppSheet to solve this problem and getting Tony and Dom’s top tips when it comes to Google AppSheet app creation.

Follow the source links to reserve your place…

Source: Connected Workers: Using AppSheet to bring the frontline and head office together – CTS Website