On Nov 18, 2008, at 1:42 PM, Adam van den Hoven wrote:

You just hit on an interesting idea for an extension.

Frequently, people are going to reuse the same bits over and over. Instead of making them go find it, what if we put a "scratchpad" on the right hand side of the parts (which will consume some space from the parts but that should be OK the visibility is important). This will give them a place to retrieve commonly used bits and then copy and paste them back into their content. Give it an easy way to save new scratches without leaving the page (key to making it useful). Provide a separate UI to "tweak" the scratch (edit, give it a title and a description) and we can bootstrap a bunch of scratches which will ease their entry into the world of "markup"


development has stalled on it, but the start of a browser extension intends to add an area where things like this can be done:


there's nothing much there other than the interface, but my intent is to provide a list of draggable snippets and allow extensions to add their own stuff (such as page_attachments)

On 18-Nov-08, at 10:33 AM, Steven Southard wrote:

I think maybe you just need to take another approach with her. Seems sometimes web development is more psychology then programming. Does she just put her hand over her ears when you say Markdown or Textile? I've had a client like that! She just wants to make headers, paragraphs, and upload pictures right? Keep working with her, tell here to take a few breaths, and keeping reminding her that the filters are there to keep the "technical stuff" out of her way.

My clients don't seem to mess with the snippets, tags, or css classes that much. They just use the filters and maybe one tag and some classes that they copy and past from where ever else it was used on the site. It takes a bit for them to get the hang of it but if they can see the simple patterns they'll be able to add their content.


Indeed. Radiant's success can at least be partly attributed to it's simplicity.

On Nov 18, 2008, at 11:44 AM, Casper Fabricius wrote:

Hi everyone,

I've used Radiant for more than 10 web sites during the past 1,5 years, and I really like it. Definitely the best CMS for Rails.

However, I have a client whose content editor is very frustrated with the system. She can only just tolerate using Markup, and she refuses to write any kind of HTML - Radius tags falls into this category from her point of view. According to her, a proper CMS would hide all this "technical stuff" and provide custom forms for all types of content.

I know what the core team might answer: Radiant CMS was not built for this woman. It was built for small sites and content editors with a bit of technical insight. But Radiant is still the most user-friendly CMS that exists for Rails, and I don't really feel like coding PHP just get a more "advanced" UI, which will suck anyway.

So my question is: How do the rest of you handle this? How do you hide away "technical" stuff such as snippets, tags and css classes? Do you: - Use any of the WYSIWYG filters? (I've done this a few times, it has its own problems)
- Build very specific custom layouts for all variants for pages?
- Use a generic templating interface such as radiant-templates- extension to wrap everything up? - Write custom extensions to wrap all kinds of "elements" nicely in forms? (such as newsletters, spots, list of various items, etc.)

Can Radiant be palatable for content editors such as my client, or is it simply the wrong choice in this case?

It's tough to know how to handle it without a better understanding, but I've had clients ask for WYSIWYG and had it only cause more problems once they start using it.

I do as much as I can to handle the layout of content with CSS so that entering the text stays simple. When clients want to start moving things around and adding more complex HTML within the content, I try to first find a way to simplify the content.

If she wants to pay you to create forms, then create the forms. I think that as one goes down a path to make things simpler you may find that it ends up being more complex. Abstracting out content into forms may or may not do this.

I think that its reasonable that she not want to write HTML or radius tags, but she may be adding more hoops for you and herself to jump through when learning to type <r:snippet... might be a simpler and less expensive solution.

I'm interested to see other responses.

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