August 2020 Newsletter#

Quick Tips#

  • Date Offsets. It is easy to get into muddles calculating dates. DATEADD is an easy and reliable way to add years, months, weeks, and days to a date. For example, to calculate three months on from a specific date, do DATEADD($date, months=3). For a week and a day before that, do DATEADD($date, months=3, weeks=-1, day=-1). Simple!

  • Column Names. Sometimes, there is a tension between choosing a column name as a verbose label to explain what it is about, and choosing something short and snappy that is comfortable in formulas. You can have both! Just open the column options and uncheck “Use Name as ID?”. Then you can set the name used as a label and the name used in formulas separately. And as always with Grist, if you change your mind later you can change or relink the names and all your formulas will update automatically.

naming columns

What’s New#

Sort your documents by modification date. You can now choose to order your documents so that the most recently changed ones show up first, using the new By Name / By Date Modified option at the top right of document lists.


List documents as icons. You may now also control whether documents show as a grid of icons or as a list of names, using the new grid and stack icons at the top right of document lists.


Reactive custom widgets. We have made it simple for web developers to create Custom Widgets that offer new reactive views of your data that update automatically. A developer need only call grist.onRecord(s) to subscribe to a record or a set of records linked to the widget; after that, presentation is a matter of preparing HTML/CSS/JS assets (no Grist-specific knowledge needed). The user of the widget controls data selection using regular Widget Linking. We invite web developers to have a go at building new widgets or visualizations, and we’d be excited to hear about the results (shoot us a mail at

New Examples#

Here is an example of what you can do with Grist:

  • Preparing Invoices: Preview printable invoices side by side with your client and order data. Enter billable items quickly, making use of formulas, and see the invoice update immediately just like any other part of a spreadsheet. This is also an example of the kind of new visualization that can be built with Custom Widgets.

invoice example

Learning Grist#

  • Get started quickly with basic Grist concepts by watching this playlist of a few very short introductory videos: Grist Video Series.

  • Each of our featured Examples & Templates has a related tutorial that shows step-by-step how to build it from scratch. Read through one to gain a deeper understanding of how various features play together.

  • Visit our Help Center to find all of the above, along with the full product documentation.

  • Questions or suggestions? Click the Give Feedback link near the bottom left in the Grist application, or simply email