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Build Interactive Dashboards from Airtable Data in Amazon QuickSight

Create a virtual MySQL database for Airtable data in CData Cloud Hub and import Airtable data into Amazon QuickSight SPICE to build interactive dashboards.

Amazon QuickSight allows users to build interactive dashboards in the cloud. When paired with the CData Cloud Hub, you get cloud-to-cloud access to Airtable data for visualizations, dashboards, and more. This article shows how to create a virtual database for Airtable in Cloud Hub and build dashboards in Amazon QuickSight with access to Airtable data.

The CData Cloud Hub provides a pure MySQL, cloud-to-cloud interface for Airtable, allowing you to easily build visualizations from Airtable data in Amazon QuickSight. By importing your Airtable data into the Amazon QuickSight "Super-fast, Parallel, In-memory Calculation Engine" (SPICE), you can leverage the powerful data processing features of the Amazon ecosystem to build responsive dashboards. And with the ability to schedule refreshes of the data stored in SPICE, you control how up-to-date your dashboards are.

Create a Virtual MySQL Database for Airtable Data

CData Cloud Hub uses a straightforward, point-and-click interface to connect to data sources and generate APIs.

  1. Login to Cloud Hub and click Databases.
  2. Select "Airtable" from Available Data Sources.
  3. Enter the necessary authentication properties to connect to Airtable.

    APIKey, BaseId and TableNames parameters are required to connect to Airtable. ViewNames is an optional parameter where views of the tables may be specified.

    • APIKey : API Key of your account. To obtain this value, after logging in go to Account. In API section click Generate API key.
    • BaseId : Id of your base. To obtain this value, it is in the same section as the APIKey. Click on Airtable API, or navigate to https://airtable.com/api and select a base. In the introduction section you can find "The ID of this base is appxxN2ftedc0nEG7."
    • TableNames : A comma separated list of table names for the selected base. These are the same names of tables as found in the UI.
    • ViewNames : A comma separated list of views in the format of (table.view) names. These are the same names of the views as found in the UI.
  4. Click Test Database.
  5. Click Privileges -> Add and add the new user (or an existing user) with the appropriate permissions.

With the virtual database created, you are ready to build visualizations in Amazon QuickSight.

Import Airtable Data into SPICE and Create Interactive Dashboards

The steps below outline creating a new data set based on the virtual Airtable database in Cloud Hub, importing the dataset into SPICE, and building a simple visualization from the data.

  1. Log into Amazon QuickSight and click "Manage data."
  2. Click "New data set," select MySQL as the data source, configure the connection to your Cloud Hub instance, and click "Create data source."
  3. Select a table to visualize (or submit a custom SQL query for your data).
  4. Click "Edit/Preview data" to customize the data set.
  5. Select "Import to SPICE for quicker analytics" and click "Visualize."
  6. Select fields to visualize and a visual type.

Schedule Refreshes for SPICE Data Sets

QuickSight users can schedule refreshes for data sets that are imported into SPICE, ensuring that data being analyzed is only as old as the most recent refresh.

  1. Navigate to the QuickSight home page.
  2. Click "Manage data."
  3. Select the data set you wish to refresh.
  4. Click "Schedule refresh."
  5. Click Create, configure the refresh settings (time zone, repeat frequency, and starting datetime), and click Create.

SQL Access to Airtable Data from Cloud Applications

At this point, you have a direct, cloud-to-cloud connection to Airtable data from your Amazon QuickSight dashboard. You can create new visualizations, build interactive dashboards, and more. For more information on gaining SQL access to data from more than 100 SaaS, Big Data, and NoSQL sources from cloud applications like Amazon QuickSight, refer to our Cloud Hub page.