Summarize table data

Learn how to use Coda's table summary feature to easily summarize data. Learn how to count rows, list rows, summarize columns, and more.

Updated over a week ago

Calculating aggregates and summarizing table data can be tricky as it requires understanding of formulas. The table summaries feature makes this much easier by letting you do this through a structured builder where you can select the table/view that you want to summarize and then choose the properties or calculations you want to perform on them. You can use the builder to show summaries directly in the canvas, or display column-specific summaries directly in the table.

Within this article you’ll find...

Create a new table summary calculation

To create a new summary calculation in the canvas of your doc, follow these steps:

  1. Directly on the page of your doc, type /summarize table then select the Summarize table option from the menu.

  2. Choose the table/view you would like to summarize from the picker. Note that you can search for the table/view you are interested in by typing a few characters.

  3. If you want to summarize based on only certain rows in your table - and not all - then you’ll use the Filter field to filter the table results accordingly. Jump to the Filter section below to learn more.

  4. Then use the Summarize field to choose which type of aggregation you want to perform. For instance, you can count the number of rows, get a list of rows (formatted as bullets or numbered list), or even select a specific column to summarize.

create new table summary.gif

Once you’re satisfied with your setup, close out of the builder to see the results. Right clicking on the generated value will open the structured builder again.

Count your rows

The default calculation the builder shows after selecting a table or view is count of rows. You may be wondering how any filters on the table or view affects this calculation, so here’s some info on that:

  • When you select a base table, the filters on that table are not taken into account in this calculation.

  • When you select a view, any filters will be taken into account in this calculation.

  • Personal filters are never considered.

List your rows

The list of rows summary option provides row references to the selected table or view.

  • The results are sorted based on table order, but that can changed through the Sort option to show the results in ascending or descending order.

  • Use the List type field to choose how these items are displayed (bullets, numbered list, or comma separated).

  • By default the table’s display column is used and the data is shown as row references, but this can be changed through the Display as field.

  • Finally, you can filter these results via the Filter field. Check out the section below for more on this.

Apply filters

So you’re building a table summary, and maybe you want to filter the data that’s being used in your calculation. If you’re using a view that already has these desired filters applied, then you’re all set. But if you want to add additional filters - or if your summary builder is referencing a table instead of a view - then you can add your own custom filters here.

To do so, click into the Filter field, and use the structured builder to create your desired filter. Or if you’d rather write your own filter from scratch, you can hit the f next to your custom filter to open the formula builder.

add filter to canvas table summary.gif

Summarize a specific column

You can display column summaries either in the canvas of your doc, or right within the column itself.

To create a column summary in the canvas, first create a new summary calculation (see Create a new table summary calculation above). Then, under the Summarize field, select the column you want to summarize. Finally, use Summarize type to choose what type of calculation you want to perform (sum, average, etc.). You can choose how to format the end result via the Edit format button in the lower right.

column specific canvas summary.gif

Alternatively, to create a column summary directly in the table, follow these steps:

  1. Right click on the column header

  2. Select Summarize from the list of options

  3. Choose which type of calculation you want to perform (sum, average, etc.)

  4. Then choose whether you want to display this summary in the canvas, or at the bottom of the column (choose the later if you want to display this info in table)

That’s it! You should now see the desired calculation displaying at the bottom of the column. If you have grouping applied, it will even show a calculation per group.

Add column summary to table.gif


What types of columns can I summarize?

All column types can be summarized, but the summary types available will automatically vary by column type. For instance, for numeric columns, you’ll have many mathematic summary options. For People columns, you’ll be limited to summary options like Count, Percent blank, etc.

Can I use a formula to create a summary, instead of the structured builder?

Absolutely. You can see the formula backing the summary calculation - and use it to customize your own formula - by toggling the f icon in the upper right corner of the builder. You can then hit the f again to toggle back to the structured builder. Note that if you edit the formula directly it may not be possible to go back to the structured builder for that calculation as it may be a formula that we don’t support a builder for.

table summary toggle formula.gif

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