One of the most appealing aspects of using open-source software is the ability to create your own additions and extensions to the base application/framework. However, re-inventing the wheel rarely appeals to anyone, much less developers on tight timelines. That is the reason I chose to leverage the Form Wizard Pro by Joe Audette/Source Tree Solutions, an add-on module for the free mojoPortal CMS.
Installation, as usual with Joe’s “Pro” series of add-ons, went smoothly; once installed, the Form Wizard Pro is accessible from the “Edit Page” screen, just like the built-in features that come bundled with mojoPortal.
Upon examination, one of the first settings I find of interest is “Pre-Validate the Form?”. Since the client I am using this for has had previous issues with real-time form validation, I am very glad to see this option. I am delighted to see that I can extend validation by using regular expression by selecting “Enable Regular Expression Validation of Text Questions?” in the Content Settings.
If you are not experienced in using regular expressions, a great resource to find pre-tested regular expressions is the Regular Expression Library. With regular expressions, you can make the text-based questions work for dates, phone numbers, e-mails, or a variety of data types. This will also make your data specialists very happy to have pre-formatted, standardized data – always a good thing!
If you have ever done any surveys through SurveyMonkey, you will find the “form-building” options familiar; the options to create multiple-choice, yes/no, text-based response, multiple-checkbox and sliders, are available, as is the ability to insert instructions where necessary. The form wizard also provides the capability to re-order questions via drag/drop, which is a nice touch.
Examining the “Submission Data” admin, I am pleased to see that I can export data from submitted forms in either CSV (Excel) or Word format, as well as being able to see the submission results on the website. The submitted forms can also be sent to multiple e-mail accounts; at this time, that is not integrated with mojoPortal’s built-in content workflow. The file upload capability can be limited to specific file types, a great plus.
Overall, Form Wizard Pro is quite flexible, and a great addition to the mojoPortal functionality. I would really like to see integration of the content workflow for handling form submissions, but that is a small detail.