What is it?

A cloud collaboration app to "organize anything." Provides the ability to create separate tables grouped into "bases." Essentially a cloud database with a very user-friendly, highly configurable set of features.

Learn more about Airtable.

How does it support our process?

Airtable is where we keep a set of related tables for managing aspects of our program. These tables include:

  1. Systems Inventory. We collect systems information from departments at least annually and update records here.

  2. Dataset Inventory. We collect dataset information from departments at least annually and update records here.

  3. Data Catalog. We sync information about all published and unpublished datasets on the open data portal. This is used to connect records to the inventory when publishing is complete. Syncing script we use is available in github.

  4. ETL Inventory. We log all of our scripts including information about schedules, environments and dependencies.

  5. Public Issue Log. For known issues, we log updates and resolutions so our data users are aware of them. This table syncs to the portal as well using the syncing script linked above.

A template of the Airtable base we developed is available through Airtable Universe

This image shows the dataset inventory table in DataSF's airtable base

Several automations link Airtable to our process:

  1. A Zapier task updates inventory records from publishing intake submissions and emails staff to review

  2. A script syncs data from Socrata using the Metadata API, Discovery API and other datasets

  3. The same script syncs both the inventory and issue log to the open data portal

Which processes does it support?

Airtable is the primary system of record. It gets updated several times during our process to reflect changes in the inventory.