New Features in Looker 6.16 : Conditional Alerts (Beta), Content Curation (Beta) and LookML IDE Folders

Mark Rittman

Looker release 6.16 is rolling-out to customers right now and comes with three new features that you might find interesting:

  • Conditional Alerts (beta),

  • Content Creation (beta), and

  • Folders with the LookML IDE

Note that to enable beta features such as conditional alerts and content creation boards in Looker you’ll need to log in as an admin to specifically enable them before they’re available for use, and as experimental features they are not fully developed and may significantly change or be completely removed in future releases.

Conditional Alerts (Beta)

You can create a form of “alert” in Looker right now by scheduling a look to be sent to you only when a report returns rows, doesn’t return rows or returns a different set of rows than last time, but this is a pretty obscure feature that most end-users won’t have heard of. The new Conditional Alerts (beta) feature in Looker 6.16 makes creating alerts much simpler and is enabled from the Labs section of the Admin page in Looker.

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Once you’ve enabled this beta feature, you’ll then see “alert” icons in the top right-hand corner of every dashboard item, like this:

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Click on the bell icon to define the alert. In the example below I’ve configured the alert to send me an email if net margin has dropped below 20% at the end of the previous day, with the email going out at 9am next day to give me a heads-up that action needs to be taken – but also saving me the time of scanning the dashboard each day just to the KPI is within target.

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Alerts created by users are now listed alongside scheduled looks on the Looker Admin page together with a history of previous alert executions.

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Content Curation (Beta)

Boards are a new type of content object within Looker 6.16 and give you the ability to “pin” dashboards and looks relating to a particular topic or department together in a single place. Like conditional alerts, the new Content Creation / Boards (Beta) feature has to be enabled by an admin before it becomes available to end-users, but once you’ve done so then a new Boards (beta) menu item appears in the Browse page menu.

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Click on the Pin a Dashboard or Look button to bring up a dialog listing all of the dashboards and looks in spaces you’re able to access, like this:

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You can then add more dashboards or looks, and create sections within each board to further organize your content, as I’ve done here with our internal analytics board.

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IDE Folders

The final new feature I wanted to highlight isn’t a beta, but it does need to be enabled for each individual LookML project before use. To switch on the new folders feature for your LookML project first select Project Settings from the drop-down menu in the LookML developer IDE:

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Then, check the Enable Folders checkbox just above the Save Project Settings button.

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Now, press the “+” button to see a new Create Folder option.

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Then once you’ve given your folder a name, you can move existing view, model and other LookML object files into the folder you’ve just created. Note how the various LookML files have different icons now for views, models etc.

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Release notes for Looker 6.16 are on the Looker website, and contact us now if you’d like to find out how we can help you get moving with your Looker implementation.