I am in a situation where table columns are dependent on some filtering due to the fact some metrics are only relevant to some categories of data. There are multiple filters in a separate bar and there is a table. Use case demonstration follows.

Let's say I have a filter with values default, A, B and a table with columns 1, 2, 3, 4, 5.

  • If the filter is set to default, columns 1, 2, 3 should be displayed
  • If the filter is set to A, then columns 1, 2, 3, 4 should be displayed
  • If the filter is set to B, then columns 1, 2, 3, 5 should be displayed

How do you see it from usability point of view? Is it not confusing when the columns appear and disappear in mentioned way?


1 Answer 1


If the "filter" option is changing columns rather than rows, then perhaps "filter" is the wrong term to use.

In DB terminology you would refer to a construction where you see a subset of the available columns as a "view". Perhaps branding the feature in this way would avoid confusion, e.g. "please choose a view..."

  • It's not that simple, because some of the filters have impact also on rows (some metrics are calculated for particular "categories" and then aggregated). The view concept however shifts me in a good direction - we might need to rethink the filtering a little and introduce something like views. Thanks!
    – Beau
    Commented Sep 26, 2018 at 10:23
  • @Beau ah yes, I suppose you could even have a 2 step thing where you choose a view and then set the filter? Glad I could help :)
    – Franchesca
    Commented Sep 26, 2018 at 13:06

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