29 March, 2020
By josh

CiviCRM was built to be a CRM for organizational data with which users may leverage powerful components that provide a range of functionality and build complex workflows to manage constituent information, all under one system. There exist many ways in which data can come into CiviCRM, and there’s a far greater number of ways in which the data is used across the thousands of organizations that currently leverage CiviCRM.

But, once organizational data is in CiviCRM, how do organizations easily organize and act on it? Again, there are a few ways that’s done, but perhaps two of the most important are 1) search functionality and 2) reporting. This is probably fairly obvious because you have to search for the data that you wish to act on, and more than likely you’ll want to report on the impact of your actions.

CiviCRM addresses both of these through a range of search options and through CiviReport. But, let’s be honest for a second. Both search and reporting can be tough...

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09 January, 2020
Filed under Form Builder

The Core Team has been hard at work on the new Form Builder for CiviCRM. Code-named "Afform" (the Affable Administrative Angular Form Framework) - the project is growing into a robust app for composing forms for all different purposes.

After months of development we're happy to announce the first public Alpha release, which you can download and try for yourself at https://lab.civicrm.org/extensions/afform/-/tags

Key Features

  • Compose your form by dragging-n-dropping fields from a palette
  • Easily arrange fields into grid or inline layouts
  • Add images or other rich content to your form
  • Save sections of the form as "blocks" for reuse on other forms
  • The powerful "repeatable block" feature makes it simple to add more than one email, address or phone per contact. You can even make a contact repeatable, e.g. for entering a variable number of family...
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20 December, 2019
By josh
Filed under Form Builder

Miss yesterday's presentation by Coleman Watts on the new GUI for Form Builder? You can check out the recording here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1jiqLAlnjMM If you like what you see, please consider supporting the effort. We still have an open campaign for 2019 that you can donate to that directly supports our work on Form Builder.

13 July, 2019
By josh

Two aspects of CiviCRM’s broad roadmap involve improving the user interface and adopting a flexible form builder, both of which are well underway. In some cases, there’s overlap in the end product in that work on one or the other results in an overall better user experience. That’s the case with work that’s currently underway that addresses CiviCRM’s export interface.

By applying some of what the Core Team has already been working on with respect to Form Builder, we’ve been able to overhaul the export interface such that it’s significantly more flexible, allowing users to reorder fields with ease. The work has been funded graciously by the Wikimedia Foundation who’s been keen to address both UI improvements as well as flexibility in the form layer.

The new export interface will ship as an extension, though at a...

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07 May, 2019

With generous support from the community funding our first Form Builder Make-it-happen campaign, Tim Otten & Coleman Watts have begun regular code sprints for phase 1 of the Form Builder project. The extension is evolving rapidly, but I wanted to take a break from development for a few minutes to update you on what we've accomplished so far and where we go from here.

 

We now have a data model that can support the complex needs of CRM forms - multiple contacts, relationships, and repeatable entities (e.g. enter 1 or more children for a family, and 1 or more email address & phone number for the parents). We've developed the concept of "field blocks" which are configurable groups of fields that all function together (e.g. a Name block which handles first, middle, last name, prefix, suffix and title). And we have a prototype framework to render...

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30 September, 2018
By josh

The recent DevCamp in New Jersey presented several sessions on new developments in CiviCRM land as well as showcased several of its inner workings. One session presented by Core Team member Tim Otten stood out for me: Form Builder. If you’re like me, you listen to folks like Tim with a great deal of respect and appreciation for what they say (and do). That doesn’t necessarily mean you understand everything he says, but you know enough to know that what he’s saying is probably right and well thought out! Occasionally, you do understand it though.

I’ve had one of those moments, and I wanted to report back to the rest of the world. As you might be aware, we kicked off a Make It Happen campaign to flesh out a working prototype of Form Builder. In the Make It Happen campaign we talk...

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