Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Keeping Form Builder light

In Orbeon Forms 3.9, Form Builder had for each control label:

  1. A read-only version of the label, shown most of the time.
  2. An HTML input, shown when editing the label.

Both hold the same value, and only one is shown at a given point in time. But do we really need to have a different input field for every label? After all, you can only edit one label at a time, can’t you? So why not have just one input, and re-use it to edit all the labels in the form?

This is exactly what we did for Orbeon Forms 4.0. We did this for control labels, control hints, and section labels. As a result, the HTML for Form Builder is “lighter”; it contains less elements, which creates less work for the browser, and thus provides a snappier experience for form authors.

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