Today we have released version 1.4.1 of CKAN, which includes an important refactor to make it simpler to create custom package editing forms – see more about this exciting feature below. There are also a selection of minor improvements, for instance adding ‘nofollow’ to reduce link spam.
Changelog v1.4.1 2011-06-27
- Refactor Web interface (including ‘package edit’ form) to use logic layer rather than model objects directly (#1078)
- Links in user-supplied text made less attractive to spammers (nofollow) (#1181)
- Package change notifications – remove duplicates (#1149)
- Metadata dump linked to (#1169)
- Refactor authorization code to be common across Package, Group and Authorization Group (#1074)
- Duplicate authorization roles were difficult to delete (#1083)
Editing packages is at the heart of CKAN, and a lot of organisations running CKAN have customised the edit form.
In the past this was done all in Python code, reusing or creating new ‘widgets’ based on FormAlchemy, and this generated the form HTML. This worked well, but you needed to know Python, and sometimes it was not clear how to tweak the resulting HTML.
Now with CKAN release 1.4.1 we have a new form infrastructure where the list of fields (and any extra validation required) is defined in a very simple schema, and the form is designed completely in an HTML template. This means that the much larger pool of web designers can tweak the drop-down combos etc. without having to touch any Python.
To give you a flavour of editing the package form, here is the default HTML template (as used on ckan.net): new_package_form.html and here are the instructions for the set-up required: Forms using Templates.
Legacy forms using FormAlchemy are deprecated, but can still be used with the current release, to ease transition. For more information, see the docs on Forms using FormAlchemy.