i am just new to retool and trying to learn since a few days,
what i noticed:
- videos on retool.com website outdated, not fitting current version
- features shown in videos, are not available like "code" component
- feature requests from 2 years ago still not implemented like dark mode
- and no responsive designs... in 2023...
- and with that no tablet version...
generally it feels like retool development came to a halt 2 years ago and is now just maintained and not developed anymore, despite a few features here and there.
which is really sad considering the amount of capital they got.
so what is the state of Retool in end of 2023. can some people share opinions in that regard?
No no no no no!!!
Retool is SOOO alive! They are just too busy building new stuff for us!
Retool's latest newsletter:
I fully disagree @meggi. They constantly bring new amazing features. For example they just improved the overall engine with a recent performance update making Retool much faster than before. They also introduced Retool Workflows which is a great addition for automatic execution of tasks in the backend which was not possible before. Furthermore, they changed the whole development UI which is a very brave step.
I disagree. Retool is very much alive and very resourceful. I think they just need to churn out a few videos on youtube like you said but apart from that we still love retool and it works well for building stuff.
They are very much not dead but not keeping up with their documentation for sure. Its a pretty massive company so I'm sure its not like this but from the outside looking in it looks like they get distracted by a big new feature and put all their focus on deploying that while their other features/components/documentation get put on the backburner.
Yes, some docs is out of day. but Retool is definitely not dead. I love it so much, especially for the new updated table, workflow, and new IDE.I quickly built a lot of complex features on it that I couldn't build before. My only concern is that I hope it has a successful marketing strategy and can operate stably in the long term.
thank you for replies, thats what i wanted to hear.
just wanted to be sure to not saddle on a dead horse, which sadly happens in this RAD space more often than not.
can anyone point me to good learning materials for newcomers?
i am also interested in samples for more edgy cases like n:m relationships.
The think you may go to read toturial/docs of retool. I use it edgedb as my database solution, it come with a edgeql, it so awesome for me to deal with m:n relationship.
I only build one workflow to deal with upsert(update/insert), it can deal with m:n so easy.
I also use with nested table(expandable row) to show m:n
and use tag/tags of new table to select foreign key from other table
@meggi , welcome,
To illustrate what's being developed throughout the last couple of years/months, see Retool Changelog | Retool Docs.
It will take some time to go through all of this, as it's a massive amount of changes!
Thanks so much for sharing your input & helpful resources
I checked internally & the Product Marketing team is aware we need to update and refresh our Youtube presence. Hopefully we'll have our more recent content pinned to our Youtube home page, along with some new content soon.
As you're learning Retool, I highly recommend leveraging this forum. Many posts have helpful solutions from our community members and every post gets reviewed by a Retool support engineer
I don't feel like they are dead, but I dislike their documentation as I find it very poor. I find most pages on the documentation feels very quickly thrown together and lacks important info. I'm always on Google searching and finding new document pages that are completely related to others I had open yet they don't link to one another.
Here's an example of one I had recently, Configure environments | Retool Docs the page for environments.
I was trying to figure out how to use sandbox vs production with Retool and assumed it worked like other platforms I've used, where you do everything in sandbox and push it to production. The fact it calls each environment by default "production" and "staging" further made me think this. However, after spending a good amount of time on it, I only then realized that environments are strictly for the DATA only and NOT the user interface, and that that is RELEASES. I found that via Google on a forum post here where someone from Retool was explaining the concept more, yet none of that was in the documentation. That's totally fine, but look at the page I linked to above, the word Release isn't even on there. You'd THINK that they would reference one another being that they are such similar concepts. Even in the left How To menu, it has "Configure environments" but no mention of configure or use releases when to me they are such similar concepts.
I find I always use the documentation and have issues or can't find what I want, then I to Google and it links to some forum page on here where someone from Retool is explaining the concept in more detail. Why not update the documentation?
@meggi Are you fishing or is this just an off the cuff comment? It makes no sense contemplating the liveliness of retool.
Thanks a lot for answers and links.
i was just trying out Retool for the first time after a customer wants to evaluate this for future backend tools... among some other solutions.
As i was going through the videos and the documentation, i was noticing that things are not quite up-to-date.
So i was writing this thread. Also i think newcomer impressions are helpful to improve the product. If people are more experienced they do not see the struggles of newcomers which can hinder product adoption.
@meggi Your right. It was me speaking off the cuff!
Hi @meggi and welcome to Retool!
I'm in the same place as you, I have done about six weeks worth of work but I have many of the same concerns.
- Does Retool make money? Last I checked they got $140 million in VC funding but I don't know what their sales are.
- There seems to be a big focus on new features at the expense of improving the developer experience by fixing old bugs/requests. Don't try asking for anything to be fixed.
- The documentation and youtube presence is woeful. I can't count the number of videos I watched before I realised my problem was that some had the deprecated table component and some had the new table.
I like Retool overall and will finish this project with it but I'm not sure if I will be recoding it with ChatGPT and Svelte in three years time.