Clarity please

Continuing the discussion from 2024-03-15: We've updated the default field name when creating new tables and we've also renamed the "Name" field type to "Person":

If anyone is reading this how can name be changed to person. Person is an object that has a name field. Unless I’ve missed something. Name is a field type person is an object that the name belongs to. I agree that the default field is hardly ever used. We delete this field as soon as an AI field is added. But it was a short text field not a name field.

Are you saying that the name field type no longer exists?


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Hi @CSWinnall,

Sorry for the confusion here! The Name field type does still exist, it’s just labeled “Person” now instead:

Hi @Les

Thank you for the response.

So name is now person. This doesn’t make sense from a database perspective.

A person has a name. The field should be name the object the name belongs to is person. I don’t understand the reason for this change. It is very counterintuitive when building a database as a person is made up up of multiple fields.


Sometimes I find the things you (Knack) spend time on out of all the things you could be working on i.e. speed issues. Is very surprising.

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I thought this was a very odd change too :thinking:

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It just seems a strange thing to do. If I was new to Knack and I want a name field, person is not the one I would intuitively go for. I don’t ask someone for their person or when you fill in a form it doesn’t say what is your person.


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Your preaching to the choir my friend :family_man_man_boy_boy: :facepunch:

:wave: Hello!

Good discussion here and a few things I’ll address as transparently as possible.

First, this change actually went out Jan 31, and we just realized that the automation did not fire the release notes as expected, so apologies for the late notice.

Second, we had a few reasons for this change. We were using a library that tried to pluralize/singularize text in some cases, like adding tables and adding views. The intention of using this library when adding a blank table with one field was to pluralize the table name and concatenate it with “name”.

Examples of what that looked like was:
Table name: Table name + default field
Vehicle → Vehicles name
Animal → Animals name

But, it was not perfect as there were often instances in which it would singularize a “technically” plural table name for some reason, like this:

Delta → Deltum name
Beta → Betum name
Data → Datum name
Fajita → Fajitum name

For non-English (typing) users especially, its results could even more be unexpected, causing confusion and frankly, a poor experience.

Third, as Knack grows, we need to scale with our users globally, and so we are on the lookout for ways across the app to provide a stronger foundation for internationalization ( i18n), so that we can more easily streamline localization efforts - including currencies, date/time locales, and more in the future.

Removing the library from this first field was in support of a better user experience for our non-English (typing) users and in support of i18n work, but, left us with the field just titled “Name”, which also was confusing, because we had the field type called Name.

So, we kept “Name” as the default title of the short text field name when a blank table is created, and renamed the Name field to “Person”. This made sense to our group of test users and went seemingly unnoticed by existing users until now :smile_cat: .

For context on what other database apps call Knack’s “Person” equivalent: “Person” “Person”
Airtable: “User”
Noloco: “FullName”
Tadabase: “Person Name”

I do thank you for the feedback on this, and I apologize if this causes frustration. And also, I’d like to ask for your understanding in that we (at Knack) try to always be cognizant that a great number of our users do not have database expertise, and when making changes like this, we really do strive to find a happy medium for no-code users and users with more advanced database knowledge.

I hope this provides some insight into why this change was made and the thought that went into it. Let me know if you have other questions or feedback on this.



Thank you Kara.

I understand the the issues with the plural fields there were definitely some odd plurals occasionally.

I guess I haven’t had to add a name type field for a while so didn’t notice the change.

I appreciate you explaining your reasoning to us and I’m glad that Knack is trying to do better. This just seemed an odd change for a database app to make.

Thank you for your time.


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Sounds like a lot of energy was spent on something that wasn’t broken.