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Form Templates

Topics allow for flexible free format data, sometimes you want to ensure strucutre to some of the topic information, this can be done with Forms e.g. saying what type of topic it is (Bug, Feature, FAQ entry etc).

Terminology

Specification

Enable forms for a web

By default topics can be edited in free form. A form can be added to a topic to give it more structure. Forms are enabled on a per web basis.

The WEBFORMS variable in WebPreferences is optional and defines a list of possible form templates e.g.

With this present an extra button is added to the edit view. If the topic doesn't have a form an Add Form button appears at the end of the topic. If a form is present a Change button appears in the top row of the form to the right of the form name. The buttons leads to a screen that enables no form to be selected of one of those specified by WEBFORMS.

A default form template (i.e. new topics get this default form) can be provided by creating the WebTopicEditTemplate topic in a Web and adding a form to it. Initial form values can be set here.

Addtionaly a new topic can be given a form using the formtemplate parameter in the URL. Initial values can then be provided in the URLs or as form values. Names being:

Defining a form template

Form templates are defined by topics, one topic per form template. A form template topic has descriptive text mixed with the form template definition in the form of a TWiki table.

Examples

Defining form in one topic

Example: WebFormTemplate of the TWiki.Know web:

Name: Type: Size: Values: Tooltip message:
TopicClassification? select 1 NoDisclosure?, PublicSupported?, PublicFAQ? blah blah...
OperatingSystem? checkbox 3 OsHPUX?, OsLinux?, OsSolaris?, OsWin? blah blah...
OsVersion? text 16   blah blah...

Defining form in multiple topics

The form template can also be defined in an alternative way by using more then one topic:

Above Example:

Notes

Changes from category system

Main changes from TWikiCategoryTable:

Creating new topics with forms

When you create a new topic in a web that has the WEBFORMS preferences variable set you will get a Add Form button at the bottom of the page. However, if the WebTopicEditTemplate topic has had a form added this will appear with values set; Change in the form can be pressed to remove the template or switch to a different one.

A form embedded in a topic can also cause a form to be present in a new topic, this is done by specifying the formtemplate parameter in the URL.

Topic meta data

See TWikiMetaDataDefinition?.

The form template topic name and all form fields/values are stored in the topic meta data. The form template topic name is needed for edit and save.

The order of form field/value items in the meta-data is the same as in the form template.

UI for multiple form templates

Migration of Category information

Principle: new system should work with old data with no special conversion.

Old data should be transparently upgraded to the new meta format when a topic is edit/previewed/saved.

On upgrading the administrator must produce a form template topic for each Web that using the old category system. twikicatitems.tmpl defines the categories and is used in the conversion. The form template must be put as first item in WebPreferences variable =WEBFORM. If it's not present view works, but edit results in an oops dialog results. If things aren't working correctly there may be entries data/warning.txt.

History

This is a more general replacement for the TWikiCategoryTable capability, in particular Forms are defined by special topics, where as categories were defineind using special templates.

-- JohnTalintyre - 16 Aug 2001

Topic TWikiForms . { Edit | Attach | Ref-By | Printable | Diffs | r1.14 | > | r1.13 | > | r1.12 | More }
Revision r1.2 - 16 Aug 2001 - 12:26 GMT - JohnTalintyre
Parents: WebHome
Copyright © 2001 by the contributing authors. All material on this collaboration tool is the property of the contributing authors.
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