[Framework-Team] Re: DataGridField for z3c.form?

Martin Aspeli optilude+lists at gmail.com
Thu Sep 10 15:23:08 UTC 2009

Wichert Akkerman wrote:
> On 9/10/09 16:57 , Martin Aspeli wrote:
>> I don't think anyone's yet built a good composite form solution. I
>> suspect that z3c.form at least has the power to let you do so in a way
>> that's going to end up being usable by mere mortals, even if it errs a
>> little on the side of generalisation in providing hooks to those solving
>> that rather complex use case.
> Unfortunately I strongly feel that z3c.form is based on a basic 
> principle I disagree with: it tries to support everything you may want 
> to do in a form. As a result it has become a large and complex framework 
> that can handle many things, but not something I enjoy using. I prefer 
> simple things that do very little, but allow me to easily extend them 
> whenever I need something non standard. For me something between 
> repoze.formapi and FormEncode is ideal. I do see that z3c.form can be 
> very useful for environments such as Plone, but it does mean that I am 
> not going to put a much energy into improving it as my interests lie 
> elsewhere. z3c.form can be cleaned up without too much work, but someone 
> else will need to champion that effort.

If you're actively discouraging the solution we do have that works 
today, you're not interested in improving it, and you'd like to see some 
other solution that doesn't exist yet take its place, then I fear we're 
at an impasse and we'll never get anywhere.

As you say, z3c.form (in design principle if nothing else) meets a need 
(schema-based forms) that is quite common in Plone. When we did the UI 
support for Dexterity, it was the only good alternative we had, since 
formlib was both being abandoned by its maintainers and proved too 
inflexible and awkward to work with, and hand-written forms would be, 
well, silly.

I won't claim that z3c.form is perfect, but I will say that we'd be 
better off trying to work with what we have today. It doesn't sound like 
you're about to champion a new comprehensive forms solution that will be 
usable in the next few weeks or months. :)

I'd also guess that the HTML markup from the default widgets is probably 
not as important to everyone else as it seems to be to you.


Author of `Professional Plone Development`, a book for developers who
want to work with Plone. See http://martinaspeli.net/plone-book

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