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It woudl be great to have a section where to discuss end-user suability stuff of Processwire.

As PW seems to be build with focus mainly on developers, but actually it will be endusers without any programming know how using and working with that site, it woudl be advised to make some usability adjustments for End users.

Some have already been mentioned and some modules already focus that problem:

i.e. Nicos SEO Module

kongondos Blog Module

kongondos Galley Module
The Frontend User Management Module
The Modules Manager (if that actually would get adjusted to display also the "Tabs" of the build in Module part - this build in module part would be obsolete and the modules manager would cover all tasks and needs necessary and beside that it would display all available modules! a really great feature which makes development much faster. Also it reduces the need to install a module with the idea you probably will need it later as you have just found it.

It also would be great if there would be a centralized List of Modules which are not listed in teh official reporsitory bt which are available from one of the processwire developer githubs. - some kind of inofficial list - people who list there works here could get entioned (advertising for them) and of course linked to there repositories at githup. This way the community would get much better informations about what is already available beside the official repositories and what is probably in the pipeline. Add an donation button to "rate/sponsor" the development with 1 dollar minimum and that would help than also those developers. and would make it interesting for the developers to post their dev stuff in the inofficial list!


there should be also a much better structure for stuff in the backend which you install. Until now everything gets installed in "setup" or "pages"

(this could be achieved by having some more categories for the backend) Until now you need all modules manually to the most usable position for endusers.

Another thing are quite simple adjustments:

i.e. the text here would be very usable if it would be a link to the page where the user can than start the upgrade process.

  • A ProcessWire core upgrade is available (dev 2.5.7)
  • An upgrade for AjaxSearch is available (1.1.2)
  • An upgrade for AdminCustomFiles is available (0.8.5)

Right now he has to look first for the module "Upgrade" or for the Modules Manager.

this search and upgrade could take place with a simple click - > upgrade all now and than all mentioned modules and core parts get upgraded

upgrade core

upgrade module by click on the specific module.

by click the security display - do you want to upgrade - and the info about the new stuff (changelog) which had been added.

There are lots of more smaller and bigger things we coudl discuss in a separate Usability for End User Section (perhaps choose a better Name for it)


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Great idea, and I've got nothing against such a discussion -- in fact I'd love to see more of it. Still, a few comments on the specific points you've raised here:

As PW seems to be build with focus mainly on developers, but actually it will be endusers without any programming know how using and working with that site, it woudl be advised to make some usability adjustments for End users. 

Our customers (i.e. end-users) have had very few issues with ProcessWire. In fact, ProcessWire is just about as easy-to-use as you can get. I've said before that as long as one knows how to fill in a web form, one has what it takes to update a ProcessWire site. Sure, improvements can and should be made when possible (and by no means do I want to stand in the way of any discussions about this), but to say that "ProcessWire is built with focus mainly on developers" is simply not true.

On the other hand, I'm wondering if you consider installing modules something a person with "no programming knowledge" should be able to do? Part of your message seems to point to that direction, but please correct me if I'm misinterpreting you here.

If that's the case, I'm not sure that I can agree -- modules that do things out of the box are a tiny fragment of all modules available from modules directory. Personally I don't consider that an important aspect, considering that we really don't want to be "the next WordPress" (or any other system that is based on the idea of building sites via stitching barely compatible collection of pre-built pieces together).

It also would be great if there would be a centralized List of Modules which are not listed in teh official reporsitory bt which are available from one of the processwire developer githubs. - some kind of inofficial list ...

Sorry, but no -- this wouldn't be great. Quite the opposite, really :)

The whole point of the official list is to keep track of the quality of modules. I know there are modules out there that just haven't been added to the directory yet (and perhaps should), but in those cases the right path to take would be suggesting to the author that they submit their module to the directory. If they're not around to do that, that's a good reason to avoid the module altogether, as it's obviously not well maintained.

Note: your idea of donation / sponsor button isn't bad, though. Not sure if that's easily doable (I'm really not familiar with such services and the way they work), but at least an option to add something like that would be nice.

... there should be also a much better structure for stuff in the backend which you install. Until now everything gets installed in "setup" or "pages"

(this could be achieved by having some more categories for the backend) ...

You can achieve this by creating new pages into Admin and moving pages related to installed Process modules under those, it's your call. Well-built Process modules won't assume that they're always installed in one location either, so moving them to another section shouldn't be a problem.

.. although you're probably thinking of something larger here, and in that case, please do elaborate this further :)

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Hi Teppo

I guess actually I am sure that pocesswire wants to be successfull.

So simply ask yourself why wordpress and joomla are so successful.

1. They are very easy to setup without any know how what a CMS or PHP or HTML is at all and they are free

2. They have tons of templates

Why do they have tons of templates?

1. Because so many people are using it. the newby, the no idea what is PHP Freak and the complete Null in what is a website at all and they all BUY the templates and install them for a quite low price.

2. Because those systems are used by so many people they are very well known and a company owner usually can find someone in his team who has worked one time with either of them - no matter if they liked it or not. But wordpress stands for ease of use.

3. Huge companies are using both systems because of their easyness for newbiees too and those companies actually pay then the development as agencies usually know how to handle wordpress and they can charge good and even expensive prices for them. Even customers who want to have a processwire site often choose a wordpress template they like from themeforest etc. and than want that to be used for their processwire site. In other words Lots of people are using it and spreading the word!

4. People who buy a website usually have no idea how to update or maintain a website, on the other hand they usually don't pay another time for a developer or for maintenance. As a result out of that you will earn very bad reputation as wordpress and joomla is insecure - They are mainly insecure because they don't update! The same would image processwire would get very soon if you make updating difficult. and actually in Processwire it is very very easy to update. It is a simlpe click.
In the case an update is not working for sure the site owner will first try to fix the problem himself but than he will contact someone with know how. Which means jobs will come.
5. The cheap, easy to handle and marked as insecure wordpress and joomla is base for a huge market and lots of agencies and developers which tons of jobs every day! Wordpress Theme developer often even tell you that they only work in Wordpress - they have actually no need at all to switch as they have no problems in getting more jobs and of course getting good income. On the other hand Processwire is lacking exactly these easyness even it fullfills lots of the same requirements for a shootingstar in CMS at all.

a. it has a one click install more or less - very easy and much easier to handle than a TYPO3 installation

b. It has already a core update which works instantly if the folder permissions are right - if the install tool would check and repair or tell users how to repair the permissions than this would ven always work

c. it is in deed much more secure than wordpress and joomla. Try to update wordpress or joomla it is way more difficult especially when you have installed custom stuff.

d. Themes are completely missing which is simply a nogo for many people. One reason why kay strohbach the developer of typo3-themes started to develop a wordpress theme importer to TYPO3 - having this you can import all themes of Wordpress for TYPO3 and with a simple click you can make usage of thousands I woudl say tenthousands or even hiundredthousands of great looking templates without need of a designer at all to start your site with. This is why wordpress and Joomla are so popular. Making it easy and customer friendly to maintain their own sites is even much better as customers feel like they are the master of ceremony and they will like to come back to the agency which taught suggested using Processwire etc. if they have a problem.

e. If processwire could use and integrate wordpress themes like TYPO3 can do in typo3-themes than it would be unbeatable from scratch. When you talk to a customer you could simply let them choose one of those great looking templates which fullfills most of their wishes and than you simply integrate it in front of their eyes and they see what they will get. For sure customers will like that a lot.

Should users be able to do mostly of setting up and installing modules by themselves - YES! because it will bring tons of jobs and popularity!

I am a cerified Montessori teacher beside running a BOI approved and cerified Company in Thailand. Montessori has one slogan: "Help to do it by myself"

Leaders from some companies you perhaps know went to Montessori schools and if you ask them why they are so successful they will tell you it was there Montessori Education. They were motivated and allowed to discover things which already had been discovered. They were allowed to experiment even they know it will end inan failure. etc.

Ask the leaders of Google, Amazone, Wikipeadia etc. about it. If now Processwire follows the same idea it would provide their users a prepared surrounding where they actually woudl be able to do mostly by themselves. But the result will be that they will hire YOU and many other agencies who are capable and able to tell them their fascination about Processwire. They really will like that system when they can be Master of them selves and even discover things you probably have discovered already every time when you setup a processwire site. People will be much more willing also to sponsor development for such a system than for a system which only things a developer should be able to handle it.

Most developers do one big mistake. They think when they do something in their system so that no other will be able to use it, the customer will come back. False - No - Fact is he will get frustrated as all other Agencies probably will tell him that this has been made by the former dev and is not conform is not working or whats however - so they can get a job. You will loose and Processwire will losse as it will be called soon than as a system which will cuase more and more costs the deeper you get into it - even it could be just the opposite.

Make thinks as simple as possible for the endusers and developers AND Endusers will use it and the gadget, Themes and module market will flourish. Processwire will be the third huge CMS on Themeforest overrunning Drupal as a vision. I doubt that PW can ever catch up with Wordpress or Joomla in that point of popularity but it could get very very near to it.

"considering that we really don't want to be "the next WordPress" (or any other system that is based on the idea of building sites via stitching barely compatible collection of pre-built pieces together)."

Do you wanna have jobs?
Good Jobs?
Lots of Jobs?

Than better delete that sentence completely our of your brain and only dream about it. Make it as your personal goal if you wish.
If you market Processwire with that intention you could already start digging the grave for it! and make yourself ready for the burial!
Yes - You need to learn from the success of wordpress and joomla if you really want to make processwire used much more.

Have a look to drupal.
They did what you said the same way. Until Drupal 5. They were good but not as good as they could have been. In 6 Profiles got very popular and drupal got more and more popular and suddenly you had themes appearing on Themeforest - wow. But still they are lacking the translations and the separated core for updating etc. Well meanwhile they learned a lot from the success of Woprdpress and Joomla in Ters of easiness to use and they learned from TYPO3 (also because major former TYPO3 gurus are now top propmoters of drupal) Have a look to drupal 8 and the water for processwire and for TYPO3 and for Wordpress will get a lot of Thinner!

TYPO3 core people did NOT learn out of it for years since Kaspar the creator resigned as TYPO3 King from his thrown. Agencies started to try to split up the cake with small success as they lost more and more of their base. There were huge discussions going on abot usability and whatfor TYPO3 shoudl be. Those agencies wanted it for the upper tenthousands etc. but finally the base won. TYPO3-THEMES.org is only one example on how usability got back to TYPO3 and that at least some of the devs learned out of the expereience of a breaking away base and of course also their customers. Most customers moved to wordpress/Drupal/ Contao and Concrete5 as most of them never ever heard about Processwire at all! You need to change that if you want to stay on that market which will be a very good market in future, especially here in South East Asian Countries and China - don't forget China!!! or underestimate it. Better try to get yor feed on that ground as soon as possible!

The whole point of the official list is to keep track of the quality of modules. I know there are modules out there that just haven't been added to the directory yet (and perhaps should), but in those cases the right path to take would be suggesting to the author that they submit their module to the directory.

Well it will be another knock out and digging the grave for processwire already.

Prepared Surrounding is the successfull path and this peans if you have a list where all thos ideas of developers are listed and available than you ca have much better colaboration or developers, much better coding, much less mistakes and usablity problems as people whoul test it . If you list them in a forum than only a few people will hear about it. The first thing I did actually was looking for all those nice modules which are NOT listed on processwire and found lots of stuff which should be promoted to get listed there and other very interesting stuff which needs simply much more testing and feedback. Some modules I already mentioned here and their developer corrected their mistakes. Without knowing about that they even exist this would never happen. Be as transparent aspossible. Set up a redmine and connect all those githubs to the centrtalized forge redmine and here every agency can have a look. They can make suggestions, they can sponsore , they can work to gether , ..... All this is not available when you exclude people from getting informations about those modules which are not on processwire.

A donation button is a very easy task as you only wouldneed to use the paypal donation feature and integrate it and people who want to receive donations for their work would need to write their paypal contact in the module configuration file somewhere. Don't reinvent wheels as most of it is already there and only calls to be used!

so moving them to another section shouldn't be a problem.

It is again about usability. Have a look at existing Headers:

Pages (Page related stuff)
Settings (even things which have nothing to do with settings at all are installed here by default)

Access (user, user group and premission related)
what about
Files: (everything related to filemanaging)
Development: (every tool which helps developers and are actually nothing for endusers and this area could be even be deleted later or deactivated)

Tools: like diagbostics, Logs, Profile export, CSV IMport, Upgrades, Module manager

Modules I would take out and integrate the few stuff into the Module manager Module which is way better!

Of course yo can achieve things by moving things around which is actually a very bad thing in terms of tutorials books and support at all. which means it is contraproductive and against popularity of a system!

Every time a customer will ask me to help him in his Processwire site I would firstneed to examine their specific structure and look where they have hidden that or that, It would be a waste of time.

DASHBOARD - with widgets like an rss feed about the latestproceswire news - new modules - of course security issues etc., perhaps a way to integrate a support via skype etc.

- widget 1

- widget 2


- Tree
- Find
- redirects

- Trashman

- Recent


- Blog

- Comments

- Images (Image manager)

- Gallery manager (kondogo)

- Newsletter

- Orders

- Data Editor

- Image Editor (Pixlr)


- User

- User groups

- Roles

- Dynamic Roles

- Permissions


- Changelog

- Data Archiver

- DBBackups

- Diagnostics

- Export Site profile

- Field Change Notifier

- Import Pages from CSV

- Login History

- Logs

- Migrator

- Modules manager

- Upgrades

- Google Analytics

- Heatmap
- Link Checker

- MailChimp
- PwikAnalytics

FILES (File management - best woudl be something similar to what TYPO3 has already incl and integrated File abstraction Layer to integrate reporsitories and CDNs like Flickr, Picasa, Dropbox, Box, Google Drive etc.)

MODULE (this complete section I would integrate into the Administration Module Manager)

SETTINGS (some coudl also be in DEVELOPER)

- Fields
- Field Generator
- Field Select Creator
- Forms

- Hanna Code

- Langage Translator

- Languages
- Menu Builder

- Templates


- Batcher

- Code Tester

- MultiPage editor

- Selector Tester

- Tag Parser Test Page

- Template Editor

Live Site (Link to the frontend opening up in external TAB!)

This is only a brief Idea but it would help to give much better support, to write tutorials which are valid for most sites as they simply have the modules at the same place. etc.


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Hi lisandi,

while I support your effort to discuss matters of user friendliness, please note that the matter "PW compared to Joomla, WP, XYZ etc." has been discussed a zillion times.

So simply ask yourself why wordpress and joomla are so successful.

So, I think this question has the potential to distract from what you originally intended. Better leave it to threads that already exist.

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... the matter "PW compared to Joomla, WP, XYZ etc." has been discussed a zillion times.

Well than discuss it a zillion and one time!. The fact that even it has been discussed a zillion time and stil people are coming back to the same problematic an themes should actually show you that nothing valuable has happened since! Very sad for things which have been discussed so often. Why is it like this!

We had at TYPO3 similar problems as developers and designers and integrators and endusers have often very different oppinons. And some agencies had their very own ideas of getting the big huge cake for them. Result was that thebase broke, good people left, endusers got frustrated etc. - the Image of TYPO3 is about half about what it was before TYPO3 4.5 I would say! It lost a lot! Ignoring peoples opinions results in this - not only at TYPO3!

developers are often afraid of loosing their jobs so they want to keep their role as master of the code

designers often want to get further but can't as they don't know how to code, so they go back to a more designer friendly system

integrators - allronders - mostly want to be simply productive. They don't care so much about the code and also purchase ready made templates to avoid a designer but actually those integrators are the biggest group of promoters of a system at all as they create awareness.

end users - well they want to handle their stuff, they like to have all features also in an extensible way and mostly it should not be to difficultto achieve and for sure they don't like that their system would have been developed from scratch all the time i.e. because core stuff had been modified like it happend with joommla and wordpress quite often.


If all those userfriendliness would have been integrated already than this thread would be obsolete and simply not exist:

The first impression still counts a lot! - Compare it - and compare it with your own processwire as ours is already modified!




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Yes Martijn as the customer likes the way the FontawesomePageLabel Module is working much more than the AdminCustomFiles.

If he installs FontawsomePageLabel immediately the nice page labels appear in the page tree and it looks really nice while when you install AdminCustomFiles nothing happens and you won't see the nice Page Labels like before. OK you have more fields where you can set things but this is simply to much for the customer, who simply wants to be able to enable or disable those nice looking icons.

Thanks for bringing that up as this is actually a great example about how Usability could be lost by to much possibilities.

Enable the Page Icons, disable them perhaps even on a perpage base or choose your own one is much more worth
the same is with the Page numbering which helps a lot while developing pages or giving support especially when you have multilingual sites with languages you can't read i.e. Thai Chinese Hindi etc.
Also here is a plugin and the customer knows how to activate that and for customers who haven't installed it they can easily install and activate it and the numbers are there.

If you now take the AdminCustomFile Module the customer simply gets lost. It might can do much much more than all the others but you would need to invest much much more time to achieve that simple task of activating those page icons.

If now that admin customs files would have a simple checkbox which than would activate or deactivate those page icons or numbering it would be a great tool in terms of usability. Even better would be an Admin Settings interface where you actually could add all those things on one simple page with a nice overview.

KIS - Keep it simple is often better in Terms of usability.

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@lisandi I don't agree with all of what you wrote but I do think you made some valid points which should be listened to.

Regarding themes: I do think there is a need a and a space for this whatever anyone says here. I have listened to the pros and cons and understand both sides but the positives of a theme system far out way the negatives in my opinion. I know any html/css theme can be integrated into processwire with a bit of work but a theming system could still be hugely beneficial for Processwire and it's status and it's users.

Nico was working on something down this route which can be found here: https://processwire.com/talk/topic/7236-wirethemes/ and really good luck to him on that project.

I love processwire to bits but am finding myself a little envious of the options that are available for wordpress such as woocommerce and a huge array of themes. Admittedly I am tempted sometimes to use Wordpress for certain projects that need ecommerce with other basic cms features that wordpress can provide.

For me no theming system and lack of a decent e-commerce system like woocommerce for wordpress are my biggest issues with Processwire.  I don't generally use themes but there are occasions when they can be useful to work from especially if a client is on a limited budget.

Regarding ecommerce:I know that apeisa was working on some ecommerce modules but I am a little confused about how this will be licenced as I wrote here:https://processwire....apeisa/?p=77734 It would be great to see an open source plugin/module like woocommerce for Processwire with optional premium add-ons.

I understand that if someone wants features such as wordpress then they can use Wordpress but i see no reason why Processwire can't be adapted to cater for all.

I know that some here will disagree with me but I think there are valid concerns for later down the road for Processwire if it doesn't adapt and open up a little, as in the fast changing word of the web it is easy to get left behind.

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(For some reason I thought I'd clicked post on this at lunchtime but it's been sitting in my browser waiting for me and I nearly lost it all - it should go before dazzyweb's post in the order of things, but that post serves to confirm that everyone has their own opinions and that we're not all clones ;)).

- - - - - - - - - - - -

I've only skim-read bits of this topic because I disagree with much of what you have said lisandi (everyone will have slightly different opinions of course :)), but I think maybe reading the other threads on comparing PW to WP/Joomla/etc will help understand why you may be getting replies that confuse you. This one especially where from start to end where some people share your views to some degree, but specifically the post from ryan that I linked directly to: https://processwire.com/talk/topic/7565-making-pw-more-userfriendly/?p=73748

I don't think anyone's being obstinate in not wanting to change interfaces drastically, but the very short version of the counter-argument to your points is that

  1. not all CMS' have the same audience
  2. a more user-friendly interface is subjective (that thread above proves that)
  3. and the end user in theory should just be managing content, not modules/plugins/themes if the person/company who installed the CMS has done their job properly
  4. but of course it depends what kind of site you are building and who it's for

Whilst nobody is ignoring these conversations completely, being the "zillionth-and-one" person to post a lot of the same stuff suggests having not read the other topics, and perhaps asking for change that simply isn't happening for good reasons as mentioned in one of those topics.

If you understand ProcessWire and the infinite number of directions the front-end can go in whilst it doesn't make any assumptions out of the box, you will see that you simply cannot have one-click installs for frontend modules that will work with a theming system, or a library of themes that could even work from one site to the next. That said, it is relatively simple to convert any HTML template to ProcessWire if you are willing to learn (and there is an element of learning in any system).

There is nothing about this that will spell the doom for ProcessWire that you keep mentioning and that is the part I disagree most strongly with. There has been rapid growth here these past few years and many success stories that prove your statements about digging ProcessWire's grave wrong. The majority of us (and those countless others who don't participate on the forums) are making a decent living using ProcessWire in some way to make that happen. There is no desire from the majority for ProcessWire to be the "one-click-install king" and rightly so - it is a more flexible system than the others the way it is and, if used correctly, can help you build bespoke websites without limitations quicker than other systems with interfaces that are easier for customers to use (you can build some really intuitive admin template layouts with just a few minutes' work and I would be happy to share in another thread if I get time).

That's not to say that the blog module and others aren't worthwhile efforts. They do add a level of accessibility that you are talking about, however it is not the primary focus of the project and the project will not fade into obscurity by staying true to its current path - to suggest that is silly.

On the other hand, it is silly for you to mention we should start digging ProcessWire's grave and equally silly for me to say otherwise. In ten years' time will anyone be using Facebook or Wordpress any more? Will "normal" websites still be a relevant marketing platform or will everything be mobile or displayed on a watch? Who knows - the point is that technology moves on and ProcessWire is a very modern bit of kit that is not trying to be like other systems based on older ways of thinking and legacy code. Will this mean that less techy people will use one of those other systems for a simple blog? Sure, it almost certainly will, but if you want a blog and lots of themes then use Wordpress - we're all for people using the right tool for the job and it won't always be ProcessWire (but for us, most of the time, of the time it is :)).

ProcessWire will do just fine continuing down the path it is on. User feedback is welcome (I'm just the forum admin by the way, so I'm speaking for myself and not the wider project) but no project will incorporate every suggestion, no matter how often some may arise, if it doesn't fit with the goal of the project or its intended audience - in this caseit is those people willing to learn a little more than in other systems if they want to build a site for themselves. The audiences are a little different - call it "the thinking person's CMS with endless possibilities" if you like, and assuming that's not too offensive a tagline :)

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I see some misconceptions in your explanations lisandi.

You're telling us about all those great themes from themeforest. Nobody prevents you from using those. If you want a wrapper for all those wordpress functions used in the templates – build one, release it as module – but that's not the job of the cms to do this. Want to have a Drupal theme, no problem. There are even lots of pure html/css themes out there to buy, which can easily be used. The only difference is, you need to have a little basic knowledge about programming. For someone building a custom website, this is a minimum requirement. 

But there's a reason, why there aren't themes there for ProcessWire already. It's because you build your structure and content like you need it to be. There's no way of saying: articles/sites do (need to) have a wysiwyg-field and a headline and some meta information, like wordpress does it. Without knowing the content of a page it's difficult to design/code themes, but you can still use themes if you're happy with what they offer. That's a great flexibility which comes at the cost, that you need to know to code the templatefiles in ProcessWire, which is quite easy compared to other cms's. 

I don't understand your reasoning, why ProcessWire would generete more jobs if people could use it more easily on their own. People don't hire a wordpress dev, because they can do his work on their own. It's because a buddy told them it's great, or they saw one of those webdesign articles. If someone doesn't know how to code, the usability of the backend matters. Means how easy can the person maintain the site, after it's build. That's no problem for ProcessWire. I would say it's far easier, because the interface is clean and consistent, while wordpress for example is most of the times cluttered with lots of different UI's from all those plugins.

You mentioned, you would like to see a different categorisation in the backend. Just sort it that way. These are all just pages which can be moved around. You can add your own, too, if you need them.

You say, there need's to be a list of modules. The problem is, if something is listed people will use it, no matter if they know how it works / what it exactly does. Most of the modules which are at a state, where they are supposed to be used by others are (or at least should be) in the official list here on the site. This comes with the benefit, that Ryan looks over those modules and they are less likely to break stuff drastically. These modules are all hosted on Github so everybody else is free to take a look. 

I can understand that that you think some modules aren't exactly enduser friendly. But most of the people here setup pages for their clients and nothing more needs to be done with the module. It just does it's job. Also I wouldn't mind a module which eases the ecommerce stuff, but that needs time or money to build. 

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In one way I don't think there is any right or wrong here. It is just about which way each person wants to use and view Processwire and in which capacity together with each persons view of where they would like to see Processwire go in the future.

I am probably just too greedy and want Processwire to be everything because I can see the endless possibilities and at it's core it is simply the best.

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ProcessWire (PW) is a very flexible and accommodating system.  You can basically add any Front-end framework and with a little work, integrate it with PW.  For me, there are no usability issues where the PW core is concerned.  It does what it needs to do and if I feel it doesn't, I can easily find a solution that can be added to whatever project I'm working on.  The forum is very open and accessible to anyone.  People are very helpful and give of themselves.

The functionality and usability that some want can indeed be added to PW.  That's the great thing about PW, it's very extensible. What I don't understand is that there is nothing that is keeping others from adding these features. I, as an user will buy, support or make use of these enhanced capabilities whenever they are created/contributed. 

I also enjoy hearing about new use cases for PW, however I greatly hope that the core of PW remains lean, mean and powerful.  I look forward to reading about how others are contributing to the PW ecosystem by adding capabilities that are not in the core.  I personally believe Ryan or the core team are not responsible and have no responsibility for adding a bunch of kitchen sink features.

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ProcessWire IS successful. I've not read all but think it's all kinda way off to what PW is in its philosophy and core.

Sorry, but I usually am too lazy to read more than 2-3 paragraphs. You need to work on your end-user usability (me reading your post, or not). :P

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ProcessWire IS successful. I've not read all but think it's all kinda way off to what PW is in its philosophy and core.

Sorry, but I usually am too lazy to read more than 2-3 paragraphs. You need to work on your end-user usability (me reading your post, or not). :P

So sad to hear you've only read a third of my ramblings ;)

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@lisandi: I truly appreciate your enthusiasm, but clearly you and I see many things -- including what "success" really means, what ProcessWire should become, and what we'd like to do in the future -- in a very different way. Considering that, you may take my comments here with a grain of salt :)

In a nutshell, I believe that there's a market for systems that do things differently, they don't all have to be WordPress clones, and they don't all have to do whatever it takes to become popular. In fact, I believe that trying to copy what others have done and doing what everyone is expecting -- and not thinking for yourself -- is what leads to "digging your own grave" in the long run.

I don't want ProcessWire to ever become "the most popular system out there", even if it would mean "lots of jobs", if in the process it has to turn into something I can no longer respect and enjoy. I'm here exactly because I believe in what ProcessWire stands for. It's that simple, really.

Those things aside, I think you've made some valid points, and we all have something to learn here. Out of interest (and assuming that I'm reading you correctly) you mentioned finding some interesting modules that aren't in our modules directory yet.. would you care to mention what and where? :)

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Just my little contribution, and for a change, I fancy being a bit annoying.

ProcessWire is NOT Wordpress or Joomla

It is not in direct competition with those platforms, but is meant to be something far more versatile and powerful for the professional user, yet open enough that the less knowledgeable user can learn and get their head round it in a way they enjoy and can find beneficial.

The mistake, in my mind, that has been made in all zillion and one discussions about this is that they all start with making a comparison between the Drumlapress user base and the ProcessWire user base.

They are different solutions in a different marketplace.

If you want to make a comparison, choose the correct marketplace:

Modx, Expression Engine, Liferay, even and loads of others which are about DEVELOPING solutions, not gluing them together.

And when it comes to usability, when I used Joomla, I spent a huge amount of time making sure that clients could NOT update modules, user permissions and all the other things that would break the site. Trouble was, even with the new persmissions systems, that still wasn't properly possible. This "successful" application turned out to be inflexible, bloated and not fit for the modern application developer.

Our job, as developers, is to create a solution for our clients that allows them to update those bits that fit with their skill set and their needs. They are experts on their products, their brand, their business structure, but not web development - that is why they hire a web developer in the first place.

When I teach someone to use their PW interface, I find it a very short process. They get it immediately. There are three reasons for that:

  • The interface is simple
  • I remove everything they don't need or should not use
  • I create the forms and the descriptions in a way that is completely in tune with their business process.

Processwire allows me to do that.

Wordpress and Joomla do not.

I might not be a certificated Montessori teacher, but I have spent 35 years in advertising and communications working on high end internal and external communications solutions for some of the biggest companies in the world - Philips Electrical, British Airways, British Gas, Philips and Drew to name but a few.

(Just in case anyone was wondering where my writing skills come from)

Based on all that experience, I love the way I can use ProcessWire. I love the simple approach; the clearness and the focus on letting serious developers and communicators do their clients proud.

I only see it getting better and stronger and more respected - but I see it doing that WITHOUT having to imitate a bunch of blogging software!

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I have a feeling that this discussion is starting to lose the point. No one is suggesting that Processwire become wordpress as far as I can see.

I do think that Wordpress does get a bit of a hard grilling from the folks over here including me at times for something that it once was. A bit like when your family never lets you forget what you did when you was 5 years old. Wordpress is not only a blogging platform anymore and has moved on a lot from the past and has grown up a bit.

There are things we can learn from our older brother whether we like it or not. That does not mean we have to imitate him.

I also remember when I first turned up here on the forum and expressed some views and got jumped on like a ton of lead. Sometimes there is something to learn from others looking in from the outside even if their judgement seems a little clouded and they don't yet fully appreciate the power of Processwire.

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Thanks dazzyweb

The problem at Processwire is actually the same as with the hardcore developers in TYPO3. They see the code! And they like to code! And they see thousands of possibilities this code can do - even not even one percent of live examples are available since.  .... and they start loosing the connection to the base as they get flying to high in the clouds.

The discussion is about Usabillity! NOT about Wordpress and NOT about TYPO3 or Drupal or any other CMS. BUT you can learn form their experiences and way of doing things.

I have put up those three screenshots and you see with one view actually what is cluttered. Sorry but it is NOT wordpress or TYPO3.

Processwire is missing a way to structure their modules.
Moving things around is wasting time if you could simply structure things.

Some might ask what we actually are doing here in Thailand. Well we build Packaged solutions for CMS. Which means we try to make not userfriendly things more usable. We do this mainly for agencies in Europe and US who like to build websites with a CMS system as it gets demanded by their customers but who don't like to go all the year long learning curve along to reach their goals. So we build solutions and learn them how to "fly and land things because we make it easy for them to start!" In Processwire we found some very interesting stuff which goes exactly in that direction and it can do often things even much much better than TYPO3 - especially in terms of performance!

1. separated core

2. modules which can be updated with a click

3. Publish unpublish / Hide/Unhide / Delete Pages like we can do also in TYPO3 / even scheduled publishing /

4. Permissions which can be set for each single item allow it or not

5. a Page tree which unfortunately gets gluttered with hidden und admin and many other pages of modules as there is by default noway to display ONLY the really used pages from the frontend.

6. It has Pro Modules which actually only focus on WEB development and websites!!! Here you already see the way actually Processwire is taking -> It won't be the iPhone app or the clever crm system or planer or whatshowever even the code is Soooo flexible and it can do sooo much - sorry for that sarkasm but simply start building up a Reference and Profolio withall those NON web stuff so that we all here can see the real Power of Processwire and that we are not only talking about Visions and Dreams. Please stay in the reality

Pete, Joss, Soma and other great developers of Processwire, please realise that in the community are also people who are designers and not coders, who are integrators and no PHP freaks, who are End Users which want to manage their systems etc. Don't exclude them. Writing about "you need to code" and "if you don't know php" ... well sorry, itis contraproductive. I have build websites for UNESCO, East West Center, for Universities, a multilingual multidomain site system for 400 churches and many other bigger and smaller companies and even an offline mobile application we have build, ... All this has been done by good relation ship, good ideas, coorperation with people, contributing with ideas and support, great tutorials, etc. -- You don't need to much php know how at all to be honest, to do it the Montessori way, which means if you work together and not against good ideas and if you like to learn and experiment with new things and are allowed to make mistakes.

The best teacher is the one who can tech his students notto need a teacher anymore. This applies also for developers. A good developer can make hist stuff working so that he is actually no more needed. As a result people will come back to him to have also such a great application which makes the developer opsolete.

But I actually want to get back to where the thread started and why it has been set up.


Unfortunately there are actually now 3 different things discussed:

1. Usability

2. Processwire as unlimted Framework

3. "How to be not afraid to let new people and new ideas in" for developers

For all three parts we would need to have an extra thread as all three have nothing to do with each other.

1. is the one which should focus on usability, which is also comparing stuff with how it is done in other CMS or applications. We have to learn from each other.

2. I really would like to see that Portfolio referencing all those intranet, Planers, Mobile apps and kitchen sink openers or refridgerator managers. Please don't talk always about things which could be done with a piece of code - come on and give some examples which are NOT webapplications or Intranet applications which are actually often nothing else again than a webapplicatin running on a local server ;-). The huge majority of the modules and even of all the Pro Modules don't focus at all on those applications - they are made to make the web faster and better! -> they are made for websites!

3. This is a difficulty issue I know from my experience already. But it can lead to a very successful relation ship with designers, integrators and people who have NO IDEA about PHP or what you write their in your code. "Inspire to share". Nobody will take away your market shares of non web applications and the market for web applications could accomodate you all - believe me.


As I see there are Groups of Interests.


Kongondo - Gallery Module, Blog Module
Nico, Horst, Adrian - Seo Module, Tutorials, One Click Language Install, Process Diagnostics
Apeisa - Shop Module and Fredi, Data Import
pwFoo - with al kind of FrontendUser related stuff
sinmok - Inline Editor
and don't forget Ryan with all his Pro Modules and the Collage Plus, DB Backup, PageClone, Upgrade, Profile Exporter ... and so much more stuff
and even SOMa with the great ModuleManager Module, Page Edit Soft Lock, Filemanager
or Teppo with thevery usefull versioning, Login History,
with the right widgets your Dashboard could be a much better starting page like right now Pete.
sorry for those I have forgotten here now but I am sure there are many more out there

the more or less ole purpose of all those great apps is "websites"! and intranet applicationswhich are nothing else then websites running without internet access on a local server.




  • What’s Unique?
    ProcessWire is designed to have an approachable simplicity that is retained regardless of scale. Simplicity often implies reduced capability, and this is not the case with ProcessWire. From the surface, there is very little complexity and the application requires no training. Learn more about what makes ProcessWire unique.

  • Why ProcessWire?
    ProcessWire exists to bridge the gap between the current CMS landscape and the needs of many designers/developers and clients in a CMS.

  • Background
    The CMS is based on a system that the authors designed and developed over more than a decade of building CMSs. Also included is a discussion of how ProcessWire 2.0 compares to 1.0.

  • Sites Running ProcessWire
    View the ProcessWire sites directory or submit your site to our directory.

I think everybody has read this before. Do you read anything else than CMS? - Content Management System!

The comparison with other CMS actually starts here http://processwire.com/about/why/
and here http://cmssizzle.com/blog/posts/features-matrix/

When it comes time to hand the keys over to the client, we should feel comfortable that it will provide an easy to use–and easy to support–experience for them, now and in the future. The CMS should make the client as happy as the designer and developer. These are the reasons why ProcessWire exists, and the goal of the project is to bridge the gaps.

Well said!

What is Proceswire build for?

Instead it (Processwire) is built to the needs of well structured, highly indexable, standards compliant web sites in general

There is not a single word about the Planner and other non website stuff!

So lets make End-User much more happier by providing them a website builder like in circleflip and a well structured left panel where nothing needs to be moved around and where a tutorial like nico has started already one which is really great! can focus on and can be enhanced.

  • License
    ProcessWire is licensed under the GNU GPL v2.

I think empowering each other would be much much better than splitting up into a web application group which focusses on usability and scalability and speed speed speed of websites and another which tries to get a refridgerator planner working for the electrified home 3000 via intranet.

I am not sure who of the ones who don't like to focus on websites actually has read the Roadmap:

  • Roadmap
    The following features are planned for upcoming versions of the ProcessWire core. These are not the only features planned, they are just the major features driving each version.

if not do it. I really like it - it focussed and focusses to enhance the web experience! - Read the comments and you will see that none is about non web applications.

In other words please stop trying to stop usefull discussions for usability by telling that PW is so flexible and could do so many other things and that your vision might be to keep it open until your dreams become true, ... please start bringing examples! references and start building up a portfolio so that people who come to Processwire can see the power you are always talking about.


For the last question I probably open up another thread as it would be great to see someone integrating a website builder like in circleflip into processwire. How much time would it need and how much would it cost so that we can look for sponsors! I believe that this feature would be a real good thing to make things especially also much much easier and more flexible for designers! Such a website builder would help the majority of customers and those are the ones whichlike also to be able to do things by themselves easily and without damaging a system. They like to add another picture beside a text or split things up in columns etc.

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Iisandi, that's a pretty good summary, and again, you've got some very good points there. At this point I'd really suggest dividing this thread to separate discussions about more specific features / areas of interest, though; this discussion is getting way too big to manage and keeps branching into all sorts of directions :)

It's not about WordPress

Though that's definitely not the core of the discussion here, the truth is that this has nothing to do with a specific system. WordPress is popular, so it's an easy way to address the difference between ProcessWire and many of the old school CMS products out there, but we don't hate WordPress specifically (well, some of us might). We do get annoyed when people jump in and start telling us what to do without considering that what we have now might be a well thought out product when it's just not what they expected.

This forum gets regular posts from folks who jump in, take a quick look at ProcessWire, and based on that tout that "you're doing a, b, and c wrong, do them like system x".. or, more simply, "why can't ProcessWire be more like system X?". While some of the points they make are valid, they're missing the big picture, which is that ProcessWire really doesn't aim to compete head-on with some of those other systems. There's no point in that; it's the red ocean of web platforms.

We don't want ProcessWire to turn into a site builder

In it's heart PW is a tool that allows people to build anything they wish, exactly the way they wish. It's true that building sites with ProcessWire requires knowledge of how stuff on the web is built, and if you're looking for a simple "site builder" tool then perhaps something like Squarespace really is closer to what you're looking for, but at the same time the stuff already built with ProcessWire should be as easy-to-use for non-developers as possible. That's definitely something we should focus on, and if you take a look at what's been happening around here, you'll notice that we have been focusing on that :)

(As a related note, I personally wouldn't be surprised to see tools like WordPress, as it is now, eventually die out in favour of site building tools like aforementioned Squarespace, or evolve into something very similar, while frameworks like ProcessWire will be needed much longer to empower those platforms.. but that's another discussion entirely.)

You get what you give

To get back to this topic, I'm starting to think that you're really not against all that. Your initial messages touting the death of ProcessWire, telling that it's only for developers, and pretty much stating out cold that those developers don't know shit about working with / for the end-user didn't exactly suggest that you "get this".

Those comments took the discussion exactly to the wrong direction, so as a friendly tip, refrain from that sort of stuff and you'll get much better results around here. Many of us are designers, developers and people who've worked with a lot of of clients on a myriad of projects, and to suggest otherwise is just plain rude and provocative (and unlikely to yield the results you wish for)  :)

Extend ProcessWire, don't try to bend it

The point is that as long as ProcessWire remains flexible and framework-y at it's core, none of us will be offended by modules built on top of that. That's the thing you need to keep in mind here: if you're saying that the core has to go to this or that direction, you're likely to face negative attitude. The core has a great direction, led by Ryan, and we're all behind that. In short, as long as possible try to keep the discussion in extending, not modifying, ProcessWire.

The things you've mentioned, like admin themes, modules that do things out-of-the-box, packaging ProcessWire with things you need it to contain in your projects, integrating other tools, etc.. none of that requires ProcessWire itself to change. That's all you stuff you can build on top of ProcessWire, by extending it, and that's exactly because it is what it is now -- a flexible and non-opinionated platform form building just about anything (though mostly stuff that lives online).

Also: I've built a CRM of sorts with ProcessWire, I've built a lot of application-type stuff using it, and most of my ProcessWire projects involve quite a bit of behind-the-scenes magic from integrations to imports and so on, but none of that will ever be described here as public examples, as they are not public per se. That's the "problem", really: most of the time we won't be able to show those things to others, even if we wanted to. They contain private information, and in a way they are private information.

While you can tell a lot about ProcessWire simply by looking at the (public) sites built with it, that's not the whole truth.


Now, please do discuss these things further -- none of us are against the discussion or the ideas, as long as you keep in mind some of the (hopefully understandable) things I've tried to point out here :)

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Please excuse me for referring to myself: discussed "a zillion times" ...

We don't want ProcessWire to turn into a site builder

This sentence should become part of the forum rules. Maybe some of you know the funny story written by Paul Watzlawick in "The Situation Is Hopeless, But Not Serious: The Pursuit of Unhappiness"? A guy is seeking for his lost keys under a lantern but can't find. Asked if he lost it under the lantern he replies: "No, I lost it somewhere else, but only here is enough light to find it."


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Teppo has nailed it. It's the unfriendly comments from earlier on that derailed it and hence the replies - it shouldn't be surprising that people got upset when you talk about the death of a platform that is alive and healthy because it's not headed in the direction you want and basically ignoring the many others who are happy with it doing what it does. But let's put that aside for now or we will be going in circles.

So firstly, as teppo says, Processwire is a framework. It is possible to extend ProcessWire to work in the way you want, but I know this is frustrating you as you want examples. There are too many examples - I have a whole Intranet running news, asset tracking for thousands of assets, purchase orders and invoicing, health and safety observations, contract information and tracking, ship tracking (with some maps integration) and a knowledgebase that links heavily into the assets so we have instruction manuals and guides on how to fix them as well as their fault history). What I can't do is show you any of it because it was built for a client. So that is a Web application - when its function is to process business data. The back-end of an ecommerce shop to me is an application too.

The reason people say "you can do anything" is because you can. Your imagination should be allowed to run wild - because Processwire is essentially a framework that still let's you use PHP you can theoretically build anything you can see out there that is already in PHP but it depends on programming skills to make any of it happen.

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Just to tell you I'm not a coder, I'm a designer and artist who happens to like coding as it's also a creative process. I used Tpyo3, Wordpress, Joomla, WebEdition, Modx and other CMS when starting with CMS's. I barely could code php. I only struggled with those platforms and had to deal with stuff I didn't want to, be it security issues or updating, learning something arbitrary platform specific. Modx happen to be a tool I worked with before ProcessWire. Within days and many hours I had a prototype of a module which didn't do anything other than say hello. All those system never really let me do what I wanted without getting in the way or installing some plugins that didn't work really. It's because they're too opinionated to be useful in a wider range of contexts. They're all cluttered (I think you got that all wrong). Which all lead to frustration and hours and hours of wasting fighting a system. They try to save you time but in fact they put you in constraints that often make little to no sense. Now all those systems try to solve certain issues by putting yet another layer of complexity and so on.

Then I discovered PW and finally I was in charge, saving time, focusing on things that really matter. Within an hour I had my first module "HelperFieldLinks" working without even reading a manual other than the HelloWorld.module. It's so simple, it didn't take me long to see the simplicity and power of PW. I am able to put contrains where the project demands and not the system. It's all so simple even I could as a non coder. PW makes me shine, and people think I'm a good coder. lol. So wrong.

I have built websites for my mom and sister, and never had to explain or show them how to edit their site, they found out them self, which speaks a lot of the usability of PW. 

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The point is that as long as ProcessWire remains flexible and framework-y at it's core, none of us will be offended by modules built on top of that. That's the thing you need to keep in mind here

I totally agree with this. I would not be pleased if the core changed but am more than happy to see Processwire further extendable via modules.

Nicos WiteThemes idea does appeal to me as far as themes go. This would keep both sides of the camp happy as far as accommodating those that wish to create or sell and use themes for Processwire and I think beneficial to both sides. I am still a little confused why there is opposition to this. I understand that there are some worries that the standard of the forum would go down but this could be sorted by making a dedicated section or forum for such discussions on this topic. It's just an idea before anyone sends the dogs after me. :ph34r: .

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Nobody and especially not myself was talking about changing the core.

As a TYPO3 Developer who developed huge sites without specific coding knowledge since 2002 you know he BIG BIG rule: Never ever touch the core! as otherwise you will losse the possibility to upgrade. The same applies - well applied I need to say as it changed a bit - that all extensions in typo3conf/ext should never be changed. Meanwhile they stor custom extensions which you need to modify i.e. templates there.

This Big Good rule is one reason why I at all came to processwire. I am not at all interested in Wordpress or Joomla. Wordpress is interesting because of their designs which means templates - they simply have a lot - the most! I would say.

For me Processwire need to have the core like it is but the core developers need to keep it as flexible so that also great website ideas and even a website builder would work in Processwire.

As an example take TemplaVoila in TYPO3 which is still the best templating engine around! Very flexible but since Version 4.5 until 6.2 it was always targeted so that it wasn't working anymore or was causing problems as soon as a new core update rolled out. The biggest reason why TYPO3 lost so many people! Good people! Mostly Designers and non coders and some userfriendliness oriented coders who liked TemplaVoila too.


Like dazzyweb already said the Usability improvement is not a core feature at all at firstplace. There might be some things where the core has to provide hooks or some code but most of the rest will be done by Modules. Modules like BlogModule, SEOModul, GalleryModule, etc... One of those Modules can and will be the page builder.

Themes don't need to be design Templates only, they can also have different functionality but to get things like Themeing running you need to have some standards.

I guess many of you are already using their standards as they copy site profiles to start new sites and to save a lot of time and charge customers for setting up processwire. In other words you personally probably already have your base set of fields, templates, namings etc. Bringing that on a Community Level and coordinate here the basic settings and you will be able to cooperate and give support even on community leven as a field or template might appear in the same constellation in multiple websites.

So for all WEBSITE Interested people some kind of standards would be very very helpful. Best example here is the SEO Module by Nico Knoll. It is using atandards and all people now installing that module will be able to share enhancements and much more based on those standards.

The same applies also to the Blog Module and others. On the one hand it might look for some developer as a BOX but actually you are still free to modify and extend it and you will have immediately back your flexibility without loosing the compatibilty with other site owners who se the same module. This enables great support and tutoring!

"What I can't do is show you any of it because it was built for a client."

Well, yes you can if you want to! Actually it would be very good to have some case studie about that visible. You don't need to name the customer nor would you need to show a 1 to 1 copy. But some User stories and case studies would give perhaps also other community members and of course also customers who will have a closer look here, new ideas in what might be done with Processwire too.

Best example is OpenERP - now Odoo. We set up sites with it since years, but it was very hard to sell as you always needed to connect those great "hidden" not in the public web visible features" to other CMS applications and shops. Now with Odoo it has a website builder and guess what. Because of the website builder which is seemless integrated into all other modules it is much much easier to sell OpenERP. Some people even want to have an OpenERP website only because of that website builder, they don't care about that there is also a CRM, HRM, Accounting and even a POS system available. But from our experience people start with the thing they like - the website builder - and than discover the other stuff step by step and they come back asking to integrate that (it is actually a one click installation each module but most customers want that we do the "click" and not them. In other words with a great viewable tool set of modules - for websites - you could reach out to lots of customers which than order even much more which has nothing to do with the website perhaps. But as long as they don't see anything likewise or can't read about all those intranet offline etc possibilities of an application they will not even ask!

Have a look on the webite of Odoo - https://www.odoo.com/

Point one is the website builder , than ecommerce , than blogs and all the rest and it is a long rest, is usually not visible on the web!

All this you can install in about 15 Minutes! and start working. You can even try it on their demo accounts for one months and itis worth doing it and learning from it in terms of usability and nonweb experiences. Until now there is no comparisson on the php market!

Well with Processwire we don't need to be able to install stuff so fast as usually you have much more time than that, but the way that product "Odoo" gets presented to the public is very different to what processwire is doing. Here at Processwire even the website is talking only about websites and framework - also TYPO3 or Drupal are Frameworks by the way. Adding and writing more about those non web related things would be very helpfull also for the community to enhance their own businesses with similar nonweb applications. I really hope to see a section about that on the processwire website and also those texts I posted before which talk only about websites need to be adjusted accordingly, which is easy possible and useful if there are examples. You might ask your customer Pete to present it to others anonymously. Often customers like also that you will post it as it is also a good way of advertising themselves and they somehow support an openSource system as people will read about their solution and than come up with their own ideas and probably even contact you at first place to make their dream application to become true.

There are not "There are too many examples"! If there were so many thanat least some could be posted here. ;-)


As a next step I would suggest that we split the Forum in a section for web applications and non web applications.
And it is also a great meter to see where the needs and focusses are mainly. It will help to group people with the same needs and avoid that someone is not happy about a web discussion.

1. the core is the core which makes all this possible and therfore stays as the core

2. the modules could be also "apps" like the seo module or the blog or gallery module to name only a fiew which provide much more thanonly a field or another icon in the pagetree.
3. Probably there is a way - I am sure there is - to combine features into one module which than provides more webuser friendly pagetree or sorting and structuring of the left column.
4. I hope we will have a section where we can discuss that webusability improvements.

The standard of a forum does notat all go down with those discussions which actually help to clarifyu things, visions and even create new visions and ideas. It is the diversity of people and ideas which finally enhances a product from a could be to an IS in reality!


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