kongondo

Future of Padloper - New Project Lead Announcement

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Hi all,

I have posted this in the VIP support forum of Padloper as well. Some of you do not have access to that board so posting here as well. Hopefully it doesn't count as spamming🙂!

In June 2018, Antti announced that he was looking for a new product owner for Padloper. Sometime after, I had a fruitful discussion with him about my vision for the project if I was to take over. We agreed that commitment, motivation and a concrete plan were all important ingredients for the continued success of Padloper.

I would like to officially announce that I am now the product owner and lead developer of Padloper. For those who may not know, I am the author and maintainer of several ProcessWire modules, both free and commercial. I am also a moderator in the ProcessWire forums.

I would like to share with you a number of things regarding what’s going to happen next. This will be a long read.

First, I would like to thank Antti for developing a great product. A lot of man-hours, dedication, passion and love has gone into making Padloper what it is today.

Secondly, I would like to thank all users of Padloper. A great product is nothing without active users utilising it, putting it to the test, reporting bugs (even offering possible solutions) and proposing new features. So, thank you for helping make Padloper great!

 

Support

Thousands of hours have gone into developing Padloper. Although the code is well-written and easy to follow, Padloper is a big application with many moving parts. As such, it will take some time before I can fully grasp its inner workings. To make this transition as smooth as possible, Antti will help me with support for Padloper for some time. 

Currently, Padloper has a dedicated support forum. This is an arrangement between Ryan and Antti. The support forum works great as it allows the opening of multiple support threads to cover different issues. I have yet to speak to Ryan whether this arrangement can continue. However, given that I have other pro modules that I support in the open forums, it is unlikely that I will be requesting Ryan to let Padloper’s dedicated forum carry forth. A dedicated forum for one of my pro modules and open forums for my other pro modules will lead to confusion and questions from users of those other modules. Hence, Padloper support in the forums will move to the open forums. The disadvantage here is obviously the fact that support will be offered in one single (and maybe massive) support thread.

To get around a ‘single thread support forum’, I am thinking of developing a simple online support queue system for all my modules. Meanwhile, support will continue in a new single thread and via email.

 

Roadmap

This list is neither exhaustive nor cast in stone. Its aim is to give an overview of my plans for Padloper.

·         Padloper 2 – a new major release

·         New backend for Padloper

·         Optional pro frontend module for Padloper

·         Documentation

·         New payment modules

Let’s talk a bit about this list.

 

Padloper 2

Release

Padloper 2 will be a major release that incorporates a new, central backend shop for Padloper. This will be a new process module that pulls from the existing parts of Padloper (data models, etc) into one interface (more on this below). This version will also be extensible in the frontend, allowing for the plugging in of a new, optional, commercial frontend shop (full featured shop profile).

Padloper 2 will not support the current ‘any page can be a product’ paradigm. Technically, products will still be pages. However, all products will utilise the same Padloper template. These will be invisible to the shop users themselves (e.g., hidden in admin tree). Only superusers will have full control of the Padloper system stuff.

 

Support

The current Padloper will continue to be supported until the new Padloper 2 is released. New features will be included in Padloper 2 only. Once Padloper 2 is released, legacy Padloper will only receive security fixes. All other support will cease.

 

Upgrade

There will be no upgrade path from the current Padloper to Padloper 2. Although their underlying architecture is the same, making sure that everything works in different setups and environments will be time consuming. However, for those who really need to migrate, if time allows and for an agreed fee, I could develop a custom script for the migration.

 

 Backend

A new backend interface will be the major visual difference between the existing Padloper and Padloper 2. It goes beyond visual differences though. The new backend will be the single gateway for managing all shop-related features, both current and new ones. The backend will unify and include:

·         Easily add shop products.

·         Ability to add as little or as many custom fields to products as required (title, SKU, price, discount field, image/photo, description, categories, tags, etc).

·         Discounts manager (including auto start/expire discount codes).

·         Customers manager.

·         Invoices manager.

·         Taxes management.

·         Payment gateways manager.

·         Improved digital products management.

·         Stock management.

·         Manual order creation.

·         Graphical sales report.

·         Customer support.

·         Access-controlled shop editors/staff.

·         Dashboard for shop metrics.

·         Shop settings.

·         Product variations.

·         Import/export products as CSV or JSON.

·         Products search/filter.

·         Etc.

Users will be able to turn off backend features that they do not need. This will enable a more streamlined experience for users.

I plan to release Padloper 2 within 4 - 6 months, hopefully sooner. This is a major undertaking, hence the timescale. Please note that the first release of Padloper 2 will not include all of the above planned features. The idea is to build incrementally, adding new features in minor updates, focusing on stability, usability and security.

 

Frontend

Past requests have included the development of a full featured frontend shop. This is planned for Padloper 2. However, this will be an optional pro module priced separately from Padloper itself. The ability to build own frontend shops using Padloper API will still continue. For those who want a plug-n-play solution, this frontend shop will come in handy.

The frontend shop profile will feature an ajax-powered shopping cart and a customisable ready-to-go theme.

 

 Pricing Model

There are no plans to change the current prices of the 3 Padloper licences (Single, Developer and Agency). However, in order to continue to provide Padloper as a stable product with great features, it is also important that it remains a competitive and financially sustainable project. In order for this to happen and to also bring Padloper in line with my existing pro modules, the pricing model itself has to change. 

Starting from Padloper 2, the pricing model will shift to an ‘annual subscription’ model rather than the current ‘lifetime licence model’. I am fully aware that there are different opinions for and against annual subscriptions. However, I believe that this model is the most equitable approach that suits both the developer and the clients. 

The annual subscription will allow users (licence holders) to get 12 months of free VIP support for Padloper as well as future updates available within that time period. After the 12 months, users will be able to renew (online) their subscription at a discounted cost (worked as a fraction of the full purchase price) for a further 12 months (perpetually). Users will be able to continue to use Padloper for life even if they don’t renew their subscriptions. 

Upgrading current licences to Padloper 2 will be a paid upgrade. Current users of Padloper will get an attractive discount. This will be a time-limited offer (maybe a couple of months) that will start with the release of Padloper 2. New customers will pay the full price for Padloper 2. 

I hope the planned features are reason enough for you to consider upgrading to Padloper 2.

 

Payment Modules

I will be taking over as the maintainer and lead developer of the existing payment gateways (Payment base class, PayPal and Stripe). New payment modules are also planned.

 

Payment modules will continue to be free. However, only ProcessWire 3+ support will be provided going forward.

 

Padloper Domain and Future Downloads

I have also taken charge of the Padloper domain. Within the next 12 months, purchase and download of Padloper will shift to processwireshop.pw. Please note that this is not the official shop for ProcessWire! It just bears a name that reflects its product offerings 😊. Eventually, traffic to padloper.pw will redirect to processwireshop.pw.

 

Feedback

I would love to hear your thoughts about the upcoming changes and any feature requests you might have for Padloper 2. Whilst I cannot guarantee that any request will be implemented, I can promise that I will thoughtfully consider all feedback.

 

Thanks for reading and thank you for supporting Padloper!

 

kongondo

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Best of luck with this Kongondo. I haven't yet had a need for Padloper, but I am excited to see it has a healthy future because I am sure it will be useful for me at some point down the road.

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Very good news! i am happy that i will use Padloper 2 & Processwire for my shop, i cant wait, sign me in for upgrade from old Padloper when you are ready.

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Hi kongondo, also best wishes from my side!

2 hours ago, kongondo said:

New backend for Padloper

Have you ever tried RockGrid? I think you should! It's great for building all kinds of custom backend listings. Just drop me a line if you have any questions.

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1 hour ago, bernhard said:

Have you ever tried RockGrid? I think you should! It's great for building all kinds of custom backend listings. Just drop me a line if you have any questions.

Thanks @bernhard! I've noticed you've been building some awesome modules lately 🙂. Unfortunately I've not had the time to take them for a spin yet. I'll keep this suggestion in mind.

Cheers.

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Best wishes for the new part @kongondo. It feels like a perfect fit, Padloper and you. 😄

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On 9/4/2018 at 1:35 AM, kongondo said:

Starting from Padloper 2, the pricing model will shift to an ‘annual subscription’ model rather than the current ‘lifetime licence model’. I am fully aware that there are different opinions for and against annual subscriptions. However, I believe that this model is the most equitable approach that suits both the developer and the clients. 

Congrats @kongondo on your new endeavor!

I think the pricing model you've mentioned is pretty much the defacto pricing model for most quality software products out in the market. Increasingly, software is turning to the SAAS model, so the pricing model reflects market trends right now. In fact, if you're not adopting this model, you should ask why you are unable/unwilling to do so. 
 

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As an early adopter of Padloper I´m glad it will continue to be supported,

specially by a loved member of Processwire community @kogondo

May it brings happy times for us all.

I wonder why change the name from padloper to processwireshop
I know is more straightfoward but I liked padloper too :)

Nevertheless congrats :D

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12 minutes ago, clsource said:

I wonder why change the name from padloper to processwireshop

I should have been clearer 🙂. Padloper name is not changing. The module name will remain as Padloper. The domain where Padloper will be hosted will change 🙂. Padloper will eventually be hosted at processwireshop.pw to join other modules in that location. Traffic to padloper.pw will eventually redirect to processwireshop.pw. Eventually, the domain padloper.pw may be parked or retired; there are no immediate plans for the  domain. For now, it remains active, albeit with the said changes in traffic/hosting.

Edited by kongondo
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Could be interesting if you can integrate this as an option: https://omnipay.thephpleague.com/ because it has several implementations for gateways by the community: https://omnipay.thephpleague.com/gateways/community/ and can be extended easily...

It will be perfect if you can check the backend of Shopify (14 days free trial), is really easy to use and understand for the customers. The workflow concepts and the organization of product information, collections, discounts, inventory, etc is very simple and concise, minimal enough for a regular store. My personal recommendation is to stay away from Magento like UI and concepts.

Maybe the backend could use some ideas similar to your Media Manager or Visual Page Selector, I like the visual look and the user interaction.

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3 hours ago, Pixrael said:

Could be interesting if you can integrate this as an option: https://omnipay.thephpleague.com/ because it has several implementations for gateways by the community: https://omnipay.thephpleague.com/gateways/community/ and can be extended easily...

Thanks. I'll have a look.

3 hours ago, Pixrael said:

It will be perfect if you can check the backend of Shopify (14 days free trial), is really easy to use and understand for the customers.

I agree. I checked already,  almost 2 months ago 🙂.  It's definitely the frontrunner for inspiration.

3 hours ago, Pixrael said:

Maybe the backend could use some ideas similar to your Media Manager or Visual Page Selector, I like the visual look and the user interaction.

Yep, keeping this in mind, thanks.

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8 hours ago, kongondo said:
12 hours ago, Pixrael said:

Could be interesting if you can integrate this as an option: https://omnipay.thephpleague.com/ because it has several implementations for gateways by the community: https://omnipay.thephpleague.com/gateways/community/ and can be extended easily...

Thanks. I'll have a look.

+1 😉 

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News Update - 10 October 2018

I know many of you are eagerly awaiting the next version of Padloper. I thought I'd give you a couple of updates regarding progress.

First, I'd like to thank you for the feature requests and your support. As previously stated, it will not be possible to accommodate all requests and those that may be accommodated may have to wait till other releases.

OK, to the update. The following have so far been achieved.

FieldtypeProducts

A new Fieldtype for storing products including their variants, if any. This allows for easy retrieval and storage of data and and API that makes it easy to filter, search, manipulate, update, etc product details. So..:

$foo = $products->find("colour=red,quantity<10");
$bar = $product->first();
echo $bar->size;
echo $bar->price;
// etc
  

Discounts

We have a new discounts class that allows for 4 types of discounts each with generic and specific requirements.

  1. Percentage discount
  2. Fixed amount discount
  3. Free shipping discount
  4. Buy X Get Y discount

In turn, as applicable, the discounts are subject to generic conditions including customer country,named customers, customers subscribing to your newsletter, global usage, customer usage limits, customers who abandoned carts, start/expiration dates, etc. There are also discount-specific conditions including whether to apply discount to entire order, specific products or specific categories/collections, minimum requirements (purchase amount or quantity of eligible products in cart), etc.

Import/Export Products

This class allows for importing products into your shop as CSV, JSON or arrays. It is 98% done. It will also allow for exporting products as CSV (and maybe in future, as JSON, if there is demand).

MarkupPadloper

This is WIP to eventually replace PadRender. This allows for retrieving products, product tags, product categories, etc, either as ready-to-render (i.e. includes the markup) vs retrieving the raw product details so one can use their own markup, anywhere, anyhow, to output products.

Other

A bit of work on customer notifications (including email templates) and FieldtypeOrders for orders plus some other stuff.

 

I got a lot to do, so I better get cracking! 🙂

 

Thanks for reading.

Edited by kongondo
clarity
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Everything sounds awesome! 🙂

Maybe that's unnecessary to say, but please also reserve some time to do proper docs. I'm just afraid that things can get quite complex 😇 thx!

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great news! may i ask if we can download/buy?

i have bought padloper before 1year just to support it never used in real project yet.

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3 hours ago, bernhard said:

but please also reserve some time to do proper docs. I'm just afraid that things can get quite complex

Definitely! Good point.

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7 hours ago, kongondo said:

Discounts

We have a new discounts class that allows for 4 types of discounts each with generic and specific requirements.

  1. Percentage discount
  2. Fixed amount discount
  3. Free shipping discount
  4. Buy X Get Y discount

In turn, as applicable, the discounts are subject to generic conditions including customer country,named customers, customers subscribing to your newsletter, global usage, customer usage limits, customers who abandoned carts, start/expiration dates, etc. There are also discount-specific conditions including whether to apply discount to entire order, specific products or specific categories/collections, minimum requirements (purchase amount or quantity of eligible products in cart), etc.

WooCommerce with an additional plugin can perform all these. I can setup a demo for you so that you can check it out and fiddle with it, but only if you are interested in it, of course 🙂 Or maybe just produce some screenshots for you, if that is enough.

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12 minutes ago, szabesz said:

WooCommerce with an additional plugin can perform all these. I can setup a demo for you so that you can check it out and fiddle with it, but only if you are interested in it, of course 🙂 Or maybe just produce some screenshots for you, if that is enough.

Uh, I'm not sure I follow. The new Padloper can already do all the things I listed above as achieved :-). We already have a fully functioning discounts class. I've edited my post above to be more clear. 

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1 minute ago, kongondo said:

Uh, I'm not sure I follow. The new Padloper can already do all the things I listed above as achieved :-). We already have a fully functioning discounts class. I've edited my post above to be more clear. 

I was thinking of the GUI but if the current one does not need re-thinking then that's ok, just ignore my comment please 🙂

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4 minutes ago, szabesz said:

I was thinking of the GUI but if the current one does not need re-thinking then that's ok, just ignore my comment please 🙂

Ah, I see, thanks. I have the discount GUI sorted but not yet implemented (looks similar to shopify), but no harm in considering an alternative. So, yeah, I'm happy to look at some screens 🙂

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@kongondo Happy to hear that a lot of work has been done already. How do you see real terms of initial release? 3-5 month? 

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17 hours ago, kongondo said:

So, yeah, I'm happy to look at some screens

Please find them in your inbox. Thanks!

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16 hours ago, Zeka said:

 

@kongondo How do you see real terms of initial release? 3-5 month? 

I believe so :-).

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