Wanting to attempt an app... is glide right for my purpose?

Hello all.

Zero experience and looking to dip my toe in the water with Glide. I have a bunch of data and calculations in Google sheets that make a tool for users of a mobile game. One sheet in particular generates a rankings table depending on selection criteria the user inputs. The input is via drop downs in separate cells. The output is a table of adjustable length (controlled by input parameters). That table is generated by a query function. Ideally, I would like to make an app that lets users specify some selection criteria, and display tables accordingly in a mobile friendly format. Currently, everything needs to be run on a full browser version of Sheets in a personal copy so the user has edit rights.

There are plenty of basic guides out there, but since I’m just in the ideation phase I want to make sure I’m heading down the right path. Please forgive if I’ve missed some basics in my quick searches and reading, but here are some potential issues I’m seeing with what I have.

  1. blank rows and columns need to be eliminated…

There are blank rows currently because the size of the pool read grows weekly, so I had room for extras. If that’s an issue, I can easily delete extra rows. The length of the output table is not the same as the data table within the target sheet. So, the entire row isn’t filled/some columns are one length while others are shorter. This could be solved by changing the format/making a new sheet that features a fixed length list ordered and not having variable table length. Alternatively, I could just fill the empties with a value, I guess. Seems like a bad idea, though.

  1. all data has to be in one sheet…

I can make a sheet that is all the forward facing info and have it built via referencing other sheets though, right? If so, that’s not a big deal.

  1. my current format requires all users to download their own copy so they can gain edit rights…

This is due to making the output of the rankings customizable. I didn’t want to make iterative tables. This game really has no one set way to play it, so customizable rankings are almost a must, imo. This is performed by query of data within that sheet, but that data is read from another sheet (is that a problem?). If someone inputs their selection, it edits the sheet. If needing to edit the sheet itself is a no-no, I could have the tables made up in advance for presumed popular input values, have them referenced by an input within the app, and have the app display the table (if that’s all possible). If the edit rights are an issue, I guess I could maintain a separate one nobody has a link to that is open to editing tied to the app. Not sure how that would work if multiple users were on simultaneously.

Like I said…totally just thinking out loud and seeing if I’m barking up the right tree. Any suggestions, links to resources, or comments would be greatly appreciated. If I’m off base here, sorry but totally green with anything related to code or app/software dev.

If I broke any forum rules, put this in the wrong place, or anything else, let me know and I’ll remove/repost or edit.


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Welcome @jimberlin to the community.

I think Glide meets the basic requirements you’ve outlined.

It’s great you’ve read some of the community posts. I’ve often found solutions or work-arounds to what I am looking for by taking time to do some searching and reading. Often times my ‘unique’ problem is not so unique and found helpful tips. Having said that, the community is very helpful and ready to provide assistance to all.

Perhaps creating an app using your current Google Sheet will give you a feel for what is possible and especially how quickly you can make changes and customize.

As I read your three points,
(1) you can have empty rows and columns

(2) the app is based on one Google Sheet, of course you can have multiple tabs and you can relate data across tabs using relationships. You can also use the Google Sheets function IMPORTRANGE to bring in data into the Sheet that has your data from other sheet(s)

(3) the app allows each user to view and/or edit the same Sheet, however you determine what data they see using different visibility and security settings

Hope this helps.

Awesome. Thanks for the quick reply.

I haven’t searched anywhere near enough, but I didn’t want to spend much more time diving down a rabbit hole if I wasn’t going to be able to pull the rabbit out, lol.

For point 3, the app and file are linked. So, if a user were to be able to change a value in a drop down to generate output, would only they see that output? I would assume since it would be changing the sheet it would either live update on another users display or display whatever values are there at the time of their call for data retrieval. If either of those is right it still sounds like I need to make the “static” tables I had tried to avoid to prevent conflicting requests and/or wrong output. Those tables would update whenever I input new rows elsewhere, of course, but only I would have the direct link and be editor for that portion. Does that sound correct?

I’ve only glanced at the templates thus far. If anyone has any suggestions regarding anything I’ve mentioned, I’d be thrilled to hear it.

Is your ultimate goal to get all users to use only the app? Everything should be easily achievable, but you may have to deconstruct your current sheet and redesign the flow. Trying to have an app interact with a sheet that’s also designed for the end user to view and modify is usually a lot more work than it needs to be. You should try to treat the google sheet purely as a database store. Then the app building process will be a lot easier. I would recommend making a copy of your sheet so you can play around with different things. Instead of a bunch of formulas or queries, you can achieve a lot of that within glide, plus it would be much faster.

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I will either make a separate tab within the file that the user reads from or make a completely different sheet (depending on design). I’m assuming a brand new file is best so I can handle permissions easier. I’ll just have to update a single row twice instead of once a week.

My formulas are relatively simple. There’s some weighting and summation of values, concatenation of values and text, averaging, % max vs. values w/in a column, and a table of characteristics that I have a drop down to select whether the table output restricts by the value or not.

These responses make me feel pretty confident this can be done with a bit of reformatting and reading forum posts/guides. Thank you for the responses so far.

Edit: No, if someone wants to play around manually in the spreadsheet, I want them to be able to do a copy and tinker. That’s why I’m leaning toward a separate file for the app.

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