DCL Mic Drop #2
The Department of Customer Love (DCL) is Looker’s all-knowing support team. Yes, they're actually called that. They’re kind of the brains behind this whole operation! You may have talked to them via support chat or on a ticket, or maybe even in the Looker Community. Talking to DCL, I frequently have thoughts like “How is this person so smart?” or “Wow, why didn’t I know that?” It turns out that they religiously commit that bevy of knowledge to a secret internal knowledge base that’s never before seen the light of day…
Starting at the end of 2020, every month a different member of the Department of Customer Love takes 5 of their favorite internal knowledge articles and declassify them, for the entire community to see. They’ll also give a little peek into their life and who they are, so you can say hi the next time you see them on chat.
Last time, we had
This month, we’ve got
Q: What is your name?
A: Won Park
Q: How long have you been at Looker?
A: It's been a bit over two years since I joined!
Q: Favorite Looker secret / hack / insider tip?
A: A lot of people might already be familiar with this troubleshooting technique, but I often get questions about how to find the root cause of LookML validator errors like "unknown field referenced" or "inaccessible fields". Clicking on the error usually takes us to a view file where we're referencing a field from another view. This can often be misleading.
Instead of clicking on the error message, it helps to look below the error message, <view_name>:<line number> <model_name>:<explore_name>, which points us to the specific model in which the problematic explore is defined. In the explore definition, we can make sure that the view from which a field we're trying to reference is joined to that particular explore, check if there are any explore-level or join-level parameters such as the `fields` parameter which we use to specify which fields are brought into an explore.
Q: What’s the last table calc you wrote, and what does it do?
A: I just had a conversation with a customer about a use case about putting an up arrow or a down arrow next to a value depending on whether there was an increase or decrease from a value of a previous month. This type of use case can be achieved with a simple table calculation and fun emojis. I introduced the customer to examples on this help center article and they said this was exactly what they were looking for: https://help.looker.com/hc/en-us/articles/360023573694-Conditional-Formating-using-Table-Calculations
Q: If you could share some advice with someone just starting out with Looker / learning Looker, what would it be?
A: All our public-facing resources like docs and help center articles are truly amazing! Our docs are incredibly thorough, packed with great examples and tips in the "Things to Know" sections. And our help center articles cover a wide range of different use cases. When I was just starting out with Looker, I learned a lot through the examples on our docs and step-by-step instructions on our help center articles with helpful screenshots for such topics like dimensionalizing a measure. To this day, I find these resources to be incredible references.