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Roadmap Questions – Why no Pages?

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  • #1114
    TinyBatz

    I was reviewing the Roadmap earlier and I noticed that the majority of the development focus is on providing alternative editors “Block and Markdown”. There are, off the top of my head a dozen other CLI static site generators designed specifically for pulling Code Documentation together. They do that job extremely well. There are also a number of other Static site generators that have a Block writing option.

    However, for ease of use every other Static CMS gets a 2 out of 10.

    Why is Publii’s focus on replicating the features that other software has already nailed and not on the single biggest point of difference – the fact that it’s the only Static Site Generator that someone who isn’t a professional coder can actually use.

    In my opinion, that is it’s biggest advantage and it’s the ease of use that I suspect is driving adoption. This is good!

    In my opinion – the biggest drawback with Publii is that right now there is no real option to generate Pages. I have several ongoing projects in Publii that are having to be hacked together awkwardly with Posts. I’m considering migrating them to another platform just because of the absence of Pages.

    It’s inelegant and impractical, awkward and kludgy.

    We’ve recognised that Posts and Pages serve very different purposes. To expand Publii beyond being a very capable Blog CMS it needs to be able to make Pages a thing.

    Can I get an update on when that is likely to happen? If it’s a matter of putting a price on the feature, I am happy to chip in towards it.

    #1125
    Tomasz DziudaTomasz Dziuda
    Moderator

    Hi,

    We have plans for a page builder what also means separation of posts and pages in the UI, but it is an idea strictly connected with our upcoming block editor. At this moment the “hidden post” feature is enough for most cases connected with pages. When we will be ready – we will implement pages with page builder which will make a real difference between posts and pages.

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    #1126
    TinyBatz

    I understand that, and I appreciate that this is something on the Devs radar.  Do you have a rough timeline beyond “when it’s ready?” I’m running a business and it’s difficult to make decisions based on indeterminate timelines.

    Even a rough date would help me out.

    #1127
    TinyBatz

    Are you saying that the Pages feature is coming in at the same time as the Block Editor?

    Is there any real and immediate advantage to the Block Editor besides “another way to input text?”

    #1128
    Tomasz DziudaTomasz Dziuda
    Moderator

    No, pages functionality won’t come with the block editor. Block editor will need a lot of adjustments to work as a page builder, but it is a first step to introduce a page builder into Publii.

    The Block Editor is in my opinion much better solution for any people who just want to write blogs based on Publii – it behaves much better than current WYSIWYG editor in many cases (e.g. writing a blog post with code examples). The WYSIWYG editor still will be available as it is a good solution to everybody who needs a full control over post content HTML.

    We have no ETA for the pages feature, because providing any ETA’s is useless in such projects. The block editor was originally planned for September 2019 😉 And we will be happy if we will deliver Publii v.1.0.0. with it on February 2020 🙂

    The next big milestone after Block Editor will be full multilanguage support and to be honest – it is much more expected by our users than separate UI for pages 🙂

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    #1135
    TinyBatz

    The Block Editor is in my opinion much better solution for any people who just want to write blogs based on Publii – it behaves much better than current WYSIWYG editor in many cases (e.g. writing a blog post with code examples). The WYSIWYG editor still will be available as it is a good solution to everybody who needs a full control over post content HTML.

    Exactly. But if all that’s needed is a pure Blog there are dozens and dozens of fast, minimal and secure pieces of software already. People writing pure Blogs already have so many, many cheap examples that allow for code highlighting, etc.

    What doesn’t exist is a piece of software that allows for the creation of simple Webpages on a static site, to not have to awkwardly work around every single Page being an unlinked Blog Post. <span style=”text-decoration: underline;”>No other Visual Editor for building Static Sites exists, to my knowledge.</span>

    Simple modifications of Type of Page, like not having Mandatory page titles on every Page because it’s actually a disguised Post.

    My concern is not about the lack of a separate UI for Pages, it’s the fact that Publii’s whole strength and draw is it’s ease of use. If something as fundamental as having any page on your Website that ISN’T a Blog Post requires hours of manual workarounds, hacking and kludgy code, this goes against the entire philosophy of usability of the project. Being able to create anything other than a Blog Post with it is such a fundamental feature that I was shocked when I found that Publii DIDN’T allow it.

    I’m sure that I’m not the only one scratching his head and wondering why this feature doesn’t exist.

    Websites consist of Pages, not usually Posts. Most websites have a dedicated Blog Page, but are centred around Pages.

    By implementing in the code the current hard to follow instructions and kludy workarounds that each individual end user has to do, you massively drop the barriers to entry for anybody wanting to build a functional website, opening Publii up to the people who really need it – everybody who can’t code.

    I am not dismissing the hard work that has already been put into the Block Editor, but that is improving a feature that already exists very capably in the software, whereas Pages is so fundamental to building any website other than a Generic High Schoolers Code Blog that in my opinion the software wouldn’t be considered even a Beta release without it.

    If I was to advocate more effectively for the sooner inclusion of Pages into the software, what would that process look like? I’ve contributed $100+ dollars to the project in the past, switched several developer friends over to using it for simple Projects, but the lack of Pages is holding all of us back. Publii filles such an important niche, it is a worthy project and deserves support, but I feel like lacking this feature is a game-ender.

     

    #1147
    Tomasz DziudaTomasz Dziuda
    Moderator

    Hi,

    I have a call with Bob today and we decided that are open to add Pages feature in v.1.0.0 and not wait for the real page builder with it.

    Could you specify what do you expect from this feature? We need to list all ideas and then implement the most useful ones in the first iteration.

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    #1167
    TinyBatz

    Hi Devs,

    Thank you for listening to our concerns and for building such a great community.

    I’m not a Web Developer Expert so I won’t be able to give a comprehensive list, but I’ll try my best. It may be necessary to canvas others as to what they think should be included in Pages. I’ll explain it as best as I can.

    • There should be a separate section above Posts, in the same style but it lists all the Pages in the site.
    • Pages should consist of a content area, with no title inherently attached to it the way that current Posts have (for example, I should be able to make a Page with no mandatory title viable at the top)
    • Pages should not be inherently linked or related to each other the way that Posts are.
    • Pages must be able to have embedded html (as current Posts can) so that I can embed an external contact form, etc.
    • Pages must have their own unique URL so they can be addressed and linked to from other parts of the site.

    Kind of a stretch goal, but it should be possible to group multiple Pages under a kind of content group, so when creating Documentation sites, multiple pages can be linked together under a common topic. That Topic can’t be clicked on but just serves to gather up and order all the collected Pages. Right now I’m using Gitbook to do this for a few sites. Right now from what I can see Publii (in the Documentation themes) only allows a single Post to be a section and each section of that page is a new area under the same category, but for sites with more than a few short pages of documentation, I would need to be able to group multiple, separate pages under the same category. Gitbook does this, and I currently have a few sites hosted there but I would prefer to switch them all the Publii sites as I like this software better.

    Other stuff like sidebars and etc are well beyond the scope of Pages I would think, if someone want’s that they’ll use WordPress.

    I’ll update this thread if I think of anything else.

    If you would like to set up a chat to discuss, please post your email address and I’ll get in touch.

    #1171
    kikikiki

    Hi,
    happy new year !

    I’m a developer and after trying many good blog generator, I decided to switch for Publii.
    Why is that ? first because I hate WP in 2020, I want a clean interface and be able to change my code as I like. I don’t want a labyrinthine menu as WP with tons of options.

    Blog post are pages already. So why would you like to separate post from “real pages” ? Let’s think about it. Because this could deeply change Publii, and I don’t want to have another Wp like App again.

    There should be a separate section above Posts, in the same style but it lists all the Pages in the site.

    I understand you’d like a different view (wp style) to separate your posts and other pages (that you call pages for whatever reason).  Maybe a workaround could make this possible without reinventing the wheel and WP :  adding a category  or type as a futur feature (post/pages/ landing pages etc) in the meta and filter out the “pages ” with this hack. The benefit of it could make the post become a page and vice versa (unlike WP ).

    Pages should consist of a content area, with no title inherently attached to it the way that current Posts have (for example, I should be able to make a Page with no mandatory title viable at the top)

    Maybe add a hide Title in the post settings ? as a futur feature

     

    Pages should not be inherently linked or related to each other the way that Posts are.

    Not very clear to me could you elaborate ?

     

    Pages must have their own unique URL so they can be addressed and linked to from other parts of the site.

    NOT great at all for SEO: I suggest you read the latest SEO started guide (by Google).

    There are already tags in Publii so you can gather everything by tag.

     

    Thanks

    #1172
    MathiasMathias

    Here is my opinion:

    • We have the option of setting a post to be the homepage of your website.
    • We have the option of hiding a post so it doesn’t show op in any post lists.
    • We have the option of controlling the menu to link directly to these hidden posts (=webpages)

    Honestly, I don’t see what more the developers should do. The functionality of pages is already there and very easy to use. At best, developers could rename the option ‘hidden post’ to ‘webpage’ or something, to make it a bit clearer.

    I’m really weary of adding functionality that will make Publii needlessly complicated, and might introduce bugs. The strength of Publii is in its simplicity for new users and tweaking power for advanced users (hbs).

    Really, if it’s up to me, the best thing the developers could do at this moment, is improve  the documentation (eg. include more examples, more structured documentation), fix bugs and develop more themes. The software is perfect as it is.

    #1173
    TinyBatz

    Thank you for chiming in Mathias.

    The reason that I ask for these features is exactly that – converting existing Posts into Pages is hacky and awkward. Confusing and overwhelming to new users. Anyone coming from WordPress or any other site builder is going to react the same way that I did when things they are expecting – that every other Static Site Builder has. Their weakness is they rely on the command line and are horrifically counter-intuitive. Hence Publii, and why Publii needs Pages in my view.

    Publii is fantastic at creating Blogs … but for anything with actual (Web) Pages, not so great. This includes pretty much every website, as websites are built from Pages, not Posts. You might be experienced enough to code a workaround, but the whole point of a GUI based static site builder is that it doesn’t require you to be able to write code or run the command line / terminal to use it. Thats where it shines.

    Formalising the current workarounds and defining a separate category of Page will make the countless non-developer users of Publii much more at home. Moving warm bodies onto the software requires making complex things simple so that they become accessible to people who can then focus on content not on technology. Implementing this feature is completely in line with Publii’s design philosophy and ENHANCES it’s specific niche.

    #1174
    ajeet

    The reason that I ask for these features is exactly that – converting existing Posts into Pages is hacky and awkward.

    Could not agree more. I came from WordPress/Ghost, and found Publii easy to use. But creating a page was a very tough job for me, initially. I had to go through developer docs and do some coding stuffs to achieve the desired output.

    I can create a post template and make it like a page, but the whole point of using publii is to make the lives of non-devs easier.

    #1175
    ajeet

    improve the documentation (eg. include more examples, more structured documentation), fix bugs

    I second that

    #1176
    MathiasMathias

    I could have agreed previously when they didn’t have the option to make a post your homepage. That required some minor fiddling with the hbs-files such that the default ‘Recent posts’-homepage could be bypassed. It was rather annoying, indeed!

    But now that they included the option of setting a post as Homepage, that’s not necessary anymore. So what are you still using ‘coding stuffs’ for?

    Wouldn’t simply renaming the option ‘Hidden’ to ‘Webpage’ help solve the confusion?

    #1221
    mac

    Hi,

    I would like to add a request.
    in the future, will there be the possibility of being able to access from another computer, but also from a tablet for example?
    Let me explain better, currently to update or create a new article I can do it from a computer on which Publii is installed, but if at that moment that computer is inaccessible I cannot use Publii.

    I think it would be fantastic to be able to update the blog, or site, using another device.

    (sorry for my bad English language)

    #1286
    Verhoeckx

    What is the status of this feature request? Will there be the ability to make pages in Publii 1.0?

    I only recently discovered Publii. It looks really nice and ticks all the boxes for a CMS I was looking for! When I installed it (only last week) I was surprised that it didn’t have the ability to make pages but only posts.

    The question that I think Publii must ask (IMHO) is what they want to be: a blogging system or a CMS for building websites?

    I hope the latter because that’s what I want to use it for :-). But no hard feelings if they choose otherwise :-).

     

    #1287
    itips3727

    What is the status of this feature request? Will there be the ability to make pages in Publii 1.0?

    I only recently discovered Publii. It looks really nice and ticks all the boxes for a CMS I was looking for! When I installed it (only last week) I was surprised that it didn’t have the ability to make pages but only posts.

    The question that I think Publii must ask (IMHO) is what they want to be: a blogging system or a CMS for building websites?

    I hope the latter because that’s what I want to use it for :-). But no hard feelings if they choose otherwise :-).

    Actually, you can create ‘web pages’ or posts already.

    Just depends on how you set up your Publii website.

    It’s certainly easier if you use an existing Publii theme that is not too biased toward creating a blog (= posts). For example: https://www.dolphinstairliftseastanglia.com – that site uses the ‘Editorial’ theme with great success.

    #1398
    Verhoeckx

    @itips3727:

    Thank your for your quick reply!

    Is it possible with Publii to change the following url:
    https://www.dolphinstairliftseastanglia.com/tags/stair-lifts-for-straight-stairs/

    into (for example) this url:
    https://www.dolphinstairliftseastanglia.com/stairlifts/stair-lifts-for-straight-stairs/

    In other words: show the name of the tag? This way it would be possible to get nice structured urls!

    #1403
    itips3727

    @itips3727:

    Thank your for your quick reply!

    Is it possible with Publii to change the following url:

    https://www.dolphinstairliftseastanglia.com/tags/stair-lifts-for-straight-stairs/

    into (for example) this url:

    https://www.dolphinstairliftseastanglia.com/stairlifts/stair-lifts-for-straight-stairs/

    In other words: show the name of the tag? This way it would be possible to get nice structured urls!

    It might be possible but, personally, I wouldn’t risk doing that. Why, at least a couple of reasons:

    • Excluding the domain name, having “stairlifts” and “stair-lifts” in the same URL more than once could give you problems with search engines. This doesn’t apply to the domain name as that already legitimately has the main keyword present.
    • The more additional customisation you may do to a theme, the more ‘technical upgrade debt’ you may have to deal with later, when those nice Publii folks make available upgrades to their themes and to Publii itself. You may also want to think of the AMP version too (which comes sort of already built into the Editorial theme, and others). So then it might all start getting more involved than at first expected.

    So as much as possible, I suggest strive to keep it simple. While Publii themes like Editorial are remarkably flexible, thorough, sophisticated, and adaptable, thankfully, Publii themes like those are so well designed that in most instances, they have already done much of the ‘tech heavy lifting’, therefore give you / us more time and resources to move the ‘promotional focus’ to the website content and web marketing challenges. These are usually what ‘move the needle’ for all of us, though the tech side is crucially important.

    The Publii tags option makes it each to create menus and page listings in themes like Editorial when or if you want to group related pages together. Having the name /tags/ in the URL is not a problem, makes perfect sense, so that what follows /tags/ makes the difference I think.

    Hope that helps.

    #1440
    TinyBatz

    What is the status of this feature request? Will there be the ability to make pages in Publii 1.0?

    I only recently discovered Publii. It looks really nice and ticks all the boxes for a CMS I was looking for! When I installed it (only last week) I was surprised that it didn’t have the ability to make pages but only posts.

    The question that I think Publii must ask (IMHO) is what they want to be: a blogging system or a CMS for building websites?

    I hope the latter because that’s what I want to use it for :-). But no hard feelings if they choose otherwise :-).

    I’m in the same mind, right now it is a clear choice for running a Blog, but I want to be able to design whole websites in it so I hope that the direction they take it in.

    #1442
    champichampi

    I do often classes for wordpress. The first thing I try to explain is that… everything is a post. Pages are posts too. In fact, everything is a post. I think that something even better than pages could be… post types ! But, it’s a pretty huge project. I’m developing my own CMS for my company and post types has been one of the hardest thing to figure out.

    #1443
    Verhoeckx

    @itips3727

    Every page on the internet should have a semantic address. The word ‘tag’ is not semantic. It would be great if it was possible to give every page on Publii a real semantic address. There are articles on the internet about the logic of an internet address.

    I will not use AMP because it’s a Google developed technology only and as far as I now the are going to deprecated it.

     

    @champi
    When someone is writing for a blog he /she is write a post, when someone is creating a website he/she is creating pages. He/she will never say ‘I’m writing a post’, he he/she will say: ‘I’m creating a webpage’.

    #1447
    itips3727

    @itips3727

    Every page on the internet should have a semantic address. The word ‘tag’ is not semantic. It would be great if it was possible to give every page on Publii a real semantic address. There are articles on the internet about the logic of an internet address.

    I will not use AMP because it’s a Google developed technology only and as far as I now the are going to deprecated it.

    In a perfect world, sure. Though do remember the web pages or posts that include /tags/ in the URL are not the final web page: they’re just a kind of helper; an en-router pointer to the final destination web page / URL.

    In correctly structured Publii themes, all the final destination web URLs should be fully semantic, by your definition 🙂 Publii includes everything we need to do just that.

    Search engines like Google, Yahoo, Bing, etc., seem to love Publii-based pages / posts, so no problem.

    Also, people can look at a URL that contains /tags/ and when viewing what follows /tags/ get a clearer picture of what the URL is about.

    I understand your sentiment about AMP: it’s tetchy at best. For now, AMP is active, and appears to be constantly active in Google. If Google decide to deprecate it, the main responsive website options can just continue to work normally.

     

    #1454
    Verhoeckx

    @itips3727: okay, thank you for the clarification! I think I just have to try it and see how it works.

    #1469
    TinyBatz

    This thread has gotten off topic so I’m going to close it off and open up a new one.

    Thank you to everyone who added their thoughts!

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