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The way fields work could use a big overhaul.


spercy16
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Coming from Perch (CMS) to Processwire, the one major downside I've found is that every place I want to insert content into my pages requires a single field (be that an image, integer, string, etc.). This can be a real pain to setup and manage if you have a lot of pages, many of them with dozens of unique fields. For example, on the Projects page of a site I'm working on right now I have to have fields for donate_amount (1-15, meaning fifteen unique fields that I have to duplicate manually), goal_amount(1-15), card_body(1-15), etc. After using Perch for a while, the way their system works is simply easier. You instead create your fields in a single PHP template (for every unique section, like a card) and their CMS imports those fields into the CMS when you choose to use that card, then you just fill in the values. You can also choose to reuse that card multiple times and each one you add gives you the several fields you need to fill in. So you can easily add your 15 cards, each with a picture, title, paragraph, and link, etc. and each one is basically given a unique ID that you can reference in your CSS files. If there's any way to make fields and templates work more like that, it would be a truly outstanding and efficient CMS. The great advantage of the way Perch is setup is that I can make a card with 10 fields, if need be, and easily duplicate that card out 40 times if I need 40 cards on the page and wouldn't need 10 fields for 40 cards (meaning in PW I would need 400 fields). If there's an easier way to do this in PW I would love to know, but as of right now, from what little I do know about the CMS 400 fields would be the only way to set that up, and that would be much more time consuming than if I could create one card (in PHP) with 10 fields that automatically added a number to the end of each field for each card (if that makes sense).

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The one obvious downside of ProFields is the cost. $160 is steep, especially if you chose PW because it was free, for example to make sites for organizations like Non-Profits, like I currently am. Mystique doesn't look like my cup of tea mainly because it stores the data in a JSON file (database) and not in MySql, and they admittedly mention that "searching for data is limited" because of that fact. So, repeaters sounds like my best option right now, so I'll definitely play around with them a bit. Thanks again for the suggestions!

 

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I never used PerchCMS and from what I know and looked up over on their site reminds be a bit of something Functional Fields do in ProcessWire.
Yet kind of different but still similar. AND another Pro module.

Back to your concerns regarding 400 fields+.

400 fields for just a few cards and donations goals/amounts and such seems not only quite hight it's probably unnecessary as well.

I'd bet if you could outline your needs more detailed and maybe even a screenshot of what it would look like in PerchCMS and it's behaviour that the forum might already have a solution for you or at least an idea.

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9 hours ago, spercy16 said:

You can also choose to reuse that card multiple times and each one you add gives you the several fields you need to fill in.

Wouldn't this be the concept of a template, that has the 15+ fields you need. So on your page tree you could end up with something looking like this:

- Cards (a page with a template called cards-display-page, without any other field aside from title)
-- Card 1 ( a page with a template called card, with the 10+,15+ fields you need)
-- Card 2 (another page of type card, ready to be filled)

Since you seem to be new to ProcessWire (at least from what I perceive on your posts!), maybe you are not familiar with the idea that a Page can also be just a sort of "data bucket", it doesn't really have to render the page itself. I see that you have solved this issue of your cards with a Repeater, though just wanted to let you know you could potentially do this, and actually behind the curtains,  Repeater items are actually regular Page objects!

I have used Perch in the past to build a couple sites and I do remember it was very practical to define fields inside the templates.

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Wbmnfktr, I no longer use Perch so screenshots aren't possible. It's a paid CMS, and I'm currently doing work for organizations that can't afford it (NPOs). Plus their support was horrible so I decided to find a better option, which is when I found ProcessWire. I briefly looked at the Functional Fields page you linked to and it is very similar to how Perch works. I haven't used Perch for several years though so I'm not sure if I could do the same things in Processwire or not.

The suggestion elabx made, to use whole pages as the cards and then just bring that info into the page I need, is an great option as well. I never even considered using pages like that (as "data buckets") but will try that method soon and see if I can configure it to meet my needs. It would definitely be more user-friendly to do it that way as I could configure the field widths to be less than 100% (which they're not configurable in the Repeater module).

Thanks to both of you for the excellent extra ideas!

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2 hours ago, spercy16 said:

they're not configurable in the Repeater module

They are, you need to configure that inside the repeater field, on the Details tab where you add the actual fields for the repeater, click on the field's label/name and it will popup a configuration screen that will be set the configuration in the context of the repeater field. (in case you use the fields in other places, for example)

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8 hours ago, spercy16 said:

I never even considered using pages like that (as "data buckets") but will try that method soon and see if I can configure it to meet my needs.

When working with ProcessWire always think "pages first", there are loads of creative ways to utilize them, they form the bases of the ecosystem.

@Robin S and @adrian and others have lots of useful free modules to make it even easier to work with them. Just a few examples, randomly selected:

and more to discover: https://processwire.com/modules/

BTW, welcome to ProcessWire 🙂

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welcome to processwire - structure your site is essential for the fun of setup a site best blogpost ever is this one:

This one made my first steps a lot faster thanks to @kongondofor this very very helpfull post for beginners...;)

kind regards mr-fan

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I had a go at something like this a few years ago, exactly after I played a bit with the Perch trial. It didn't gain much traction and I never got to develop the concept further, but what I had was working flawlessly.

 

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