We use and love Notion at Hex. It’s where a solid 50% of our organizational Knowledge lives, indexing team structure and priorities, quarterly goals, in-flight projects, and drafts of feature announcement blog posts 😉. The other half of our collective Knowledge lives directly in Hex, as trusted data-driven insights cataloged in the Knowledge Library.
Why do we keep writing Knowledge with a capital K? We believe there's a difference between one-off insights and real organizational knowledge.
Knowledge is the sum of facts, accumulated through inquiry and experience. It’s the forest for the trees. The bigger picture. The whole dataset.
Creating this kind of shared understanding is the real mission of a data team, or anyone doing analytical work at all. You may set out to answer a specific question, but what you really want to do is contribute to an organization’s knowledge: the set of things known to be true about the world.
So we're really excited to announce that embedding Hex apps and cells into Notion docs has never been easier, with Hex's new link preview integration for Notion. The next time you paste a Hex link into a doc, you’ll be prompted to “Paste as Preview” or “Paste as Mention”. The first time you do this you will need to authorize Notion to access your Hex account, but after that it should become seamless to embed rich, interactive previews of Hex apps into any Notion doc.
Hex exists to make data work more impactful. We express this in all kinds of marketing-y ways, but it’s a pretty simple concept: No matter how hard you work on a data analysis, if nobody sees the finished product, then it may as well not have happened. For teams using Notion, this may as well read: No matter how hard you work on a data analysis,
if nobody sees the finished product if you didn’t put it in Notion so everyone could find it, then it may as well not have happened!
Long time listeners will remember the http://noscreenshots.club and know that Hex has supported iframe-based embedding into Notion for some time. What’s so different about this new link preview integration and why is it good for Knowledge?
Link preview embeds can be made by anyone with edit access to a Hex project, and are then visible to everyone who views the Notion document— even if they don’t have a Hex account. We of course imagine a world where everyone has a Hex account, but in the sad, grey, husk of a world that we really inhabit, this means more people can get easier exposure to data without even logging in.
Hex projects can be embedded as full apps, individual cells, or just as a Mention: an inline, live updated link that includes metadata about the linked project.
Mentions are a lot easier to deal with when you’re looking to build an appendix or reference list of many projects, rather than embed one live interactive app.
Embedding via an iframe is great for placing relevant content right in the same document with helpful context or planning information. But you wouldn’t watch a video called “Iceland Scenic Relaxation 9K” in a 500x500px embed frame— you’d want to watch that in full screen, or in IMAX or VR goggles or whatever the kids are doing these days. Same for beautiful data apps!
Link previews can be expanded to fill the entire screen, so the structure of a Notion doc can remain clean and tidy, but viewers can drill in and view apps in full rich detail.
We’ll never pass up an opportunity to make it easier to go from raw data to impactful organizational knowledge. Building a tighter integration with Notion felt like a no-brainer, and we’re excited to keep at it!