CMS & Freeway

Hello out there,

In potentially building a site for a client, the issue of CMS has arisen.
The client uses Surreal CMS and wants me to build / update its site via that system.
My preference is to use Freeway for design and build, but I’m unsure if this can be made to be compatible with Surreal CMS.
I’ve checked out Surreal CMS here:

http://www.surrealcms.com/features
…which states I essentially need to add class=“editable” to HTML elements.

I then viewed an online tutorial which does this here:

I’ve looked up answers on the dynamo & freeway support pages, and really only came up with Walter’s page:
http://www.actionsforge.com/articles/view/9-tag-only-styles
Finally (thanks for still reading!), I contacted support and Katie there offered some advice about using the Add Selector action.
…but I still feel unsure, primarily as I’ve never added code or had this issue to resolve before.

So a call for help to all you front-liners!
Could you afford me any of you experience and know-how into what I can or can’t do.

I’m by no means an advanced Freeway user, but a quick learner.
Any help would be much appreciated!


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Hi Nat,
Simply apply your ‘editable’ class style to a container item and the item contents should become available for editing within the Surreal CMS system.
For example;
http://dl.dropbox.com/u/1945110/SurrealCMS.mov

  • 1.8MB Quicktime movie
    Regards,
    Tim.

On 13 Apr 2011, at 10:46, Nat wrote:

So a call for help to all you front-liners!
Could you afford me any of you experience and know-how into what I can or can’t do.

FreewayActions.com - Freeware and commercial actions for Freeway Express & Pro.

Protect your mailto links from being harvested by spambots with Anti Spam.
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http://www.freewayactions.com


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Hi Tim,

Thanks so much for, what can only be described as, the most straightforward, helpful visual aid I could have hoped for! It’s really that simple?!!

Really appreciate you taking the time.
I’ll do a test run with the client, so hopefully this will work just fine.

Warm regards,

Nat.


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Nat
Hope it is Ok ‘butting in’. I have had an immense (I mean IMMENSE) amount of help from people like Tim and the Freeway community. A great many things can be done in these sorts of simple ways.

Although most can be found in the Actionsforge site, Tim has also written a superb ‘externalise’ action too which is harder to find (I think becasue it is in beta stage, and has been for ages-I think it’s just a stable beta that won’t need to become a release candidate!) and you can find it here Externalize. It makes external css files a very real option fror Freeway sites.

Martin Bullivant

I find it really useful. It creates an external css file for each page in a site (which is its only shortcoming, if it can be called that).

Hope thais is helpful
On 13 Apr 2011, at 13:08, Nat wrote:

Hi Tim,

Thanks so much for, what can only be described as, the most straightforward, helpful visual aid I could have hoped for! It’s really that simple?!!

Really appreciate you taking the time.
I’ll do a test run with the client, so hopefully this will work just fine.

Warm regards,

Nat.


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Hi Martin,

‘Butting in’ you most certainly are not! Any additional comment is honestly most welcome, so thank you for your recommendation and the link.

Warm regards,

Nat.


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Nat
OK-thanks. I am an artist (painter) who has expanded into web design, so Freeway is ideal for me-I can use Dreamweaver (mostly, anyway!) but I find Freeway better, faster and suited entirely to what I do.
Here are a couple of completely Freeway built sites:
http://www.victimsupportjersey.com and also http://www.ghcjersey.com
Both use the Webyep cms which Max Fancourt has written a superb action suite for.

I also build Joomla sites using the Joomla actions. Now we can add surreal cms to the list…

Freeway also enables Expression Engine to be used (though I am waiting on the next screencast from Dan Jasker before I venture out in that).

Martin
On 13 Apr 2011, at 13:57, Nat wrote:

Hi Martin,

‘Butting in’ you most certainly are not! Any additional comment is honestly most welcome, so thank you for your recommendation and the link.

Warm regards,

Nat.


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Oops last email should contain a link to http://www.victimsupportjersey.co.uk, not .com

Martin
On 13 Apr 2011, at 13:57, Nat wrote:

Hi Martin,

‘Butting in’ you most certainly are not! Any additional comment is honestly most welcome, so thank you for your recommendation and the link.

Warm regards,

Nat.


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Hi Tim / group,

I also mailed Surreal CMS and they asked for an HTML file to do a check. I sent them a link to a site I recently did for a client: www.honchopr.com

I then received the following response (sorry it’s long!):

Nat,
I’m afraid I don’t have good news for you. While the CMS will work conceptually, the markup relies on a lot of absolute positioning and numeric CSS classes. Take this one sentence, for instance:

Plus you only ever work with PR honchos - top drawer consultants with vast experience and connections in their specialist field.

In an optimal case, the markup would look something like this:

Plus you only ever work with PR honchos - top drawer consultants vast experience and connections in their specialist field.

However, the program generates this:

Plus you only ever work with PR honchos - top drawer consultants
with vast experience and connections in their specialist field.

The problem here is that, while Freeway itself can reverse engineer the style### classes and update them as you edit, the CMS can’t. So imagine that you make the above paragraph editable and a user logs in and hits ENTER to create a new paragraph. The new paragraph would look like this:

This is a new paragraph

As you can see, the new paragraph will be absent of all the style### classes that Freeway generates, making the content’s appearance inconsistent in size, color, etc. In order for it to match the preceding paragraph, the user would need to know which styles to apply to the new paragraph. And, from looking at the code without comparing it directly to the stylesheet, even I can’t tell if the paragraph should have style103, style49, or style109. So, therein lies the problem. Not so much in the editing of content, but in the styling of said content.

However, all is not necessarily lost. You could setup an editable

and strip out the existing content, overwriting it with content from the CMS. Then you could manually adjust the CSS so that “unstyled” content appears consistent throughout the entire site. Just make sure none of the absolutely-positioned elements are inside of the
.

While it wasn’t the answer you were hoping for, I hope I’ve been able to shed some light on the problem here. I think you’re going to find at least some level of difficulty using any system other than Freeway to edit the site, but with a bit of manual intervention, you should be able to manage it to at least some degree.

Regards,

Andrew
Surreal CMS Support

Any thoughts?

Nat.


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Hi Nat

I’m looking around at CMS. I like the look of Surreal CMS. But am slightly put off by your above post. Did you manage to build your site and use Surreal?

Any thoughts would be gratefully recieved

Mark


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Hi Mark,

In the end I abandoned the plan. So sadly I’m not able to bring a definitive ‘this is how to do it with Surreal CMS’ back to the freeway table!

The primary reason being that, with the time and creative energy it takes to simply build a new site, I just couldn’t really have this additional dilemma impacting on the delivery (time and budget). So I copped out, and just offered a maintenance option.

Wish I could have been more help, but good luck.

Nat.


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Hi Nat

I empathise with you.

Although since my post, I’ve created a couple of sites using WebYep. I’ve been very impressed at how easy it is to set up, there is great support for it from the Freeway community and it is very easy for clients to use.

Cheers

Mark


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I love WebYep, love the support and love the way you can make complicated websites, more easy.
For little websites, that use very little cms, i use Pulse. wen just for a little text changes, i find it easier to handle.
its free wich is also nice :smiley:

but for a larger website, WebYep!!


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