Carl Franks > HTML-FormFu-0.09010 > HTML::FormFu

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Module Version: 0.09010   Source   Latest Release: HTML-FormFu-2.01

NAME ^

HTML::FormFu - HTML Form Creation, Rendering and Validation Framework

SYNOPSIS ^

Note: These examples make use of HTML::FormFu::Model::DBIC. As of HTML::FormFu v02.005, the HTML::FormFu::Model::DBIC module is not bundled with HTML::FormFu and is available in a stand-alone distribution.

    use HTML::FormFu;

    my $form = HTML::FormFu->new;

    $form->load_config_file('form.yml');

    $form->process( $cgi_query );

    if ( $form->submitted_and_valid ) {
        # do something with $form->params
    }
    else {
        # display the form
        $template->param( form => $form );
    }

If you're using Catalyst, a more suitable example might be:

    package MyApp::Controller::User;
    use strict;
    use base 'Catalyst::Controller::HTML::FormFu';

    sub user : Chained CaptureArgs(1) {
        my ( $self, $c, $id ) = @_;

        my $rs = $c->model('Schema')->resultset('User');

        $c->stash->{user} = $rs->find( $id );

        return;
    }

    sub edit : Chained('user') Args(0) FormConfig {
        my ( $self, $c ) = @_;

        my $form = $c->stash->{form};
        my $user = $c->stash->{user};

        if ( $form->submitted_and_valid ) {

            $form->model->update( $user );

            $c->res->redirect( $c->uri_for( "/user/$id" ) );
            return;
        }

        $form->model->default_values( $user )
            if ! $form->submitted;

    }

Note: Because "process" is automatically called for you by the Catalyst controller; if you make any modifications to the form within your action method, such as adding or changing elements, adding constraints, etc; you must call "process" again yourself before using "submitted_and_valid", any of the methods listed under "SUBMITTED FORM VALUES AND ERRORS" or "MODIFYING A SUBMITTED FORM", or rendering the form.

Here's an example of a config file to create a basic login form (all examples here are YAML, but you can use any format supported by Config::Any), you can also create forms directly in your perl code, rather than using an external config file.

    ---
    action: /login
    indicator: submit
    auto_fieldset: 1

    elements:
      - type: Text
        name: user
        constraints:
          - Required

      - type: Password
        name: pass
        constraints:
          - Required

      - type: Submit
        name: submit

    constraints:
      - SingleValue

DESCRIPTION ^

HTML::FormFu is a HTML form framework which aims to be as easy as possible to use for basic web forms, but with the power and flexibility to do anything else you might want to do (as long as it involves forms).

You can configure almost any part of formfu's behaviour and output. By default formfu renders "XHTML 1.0 Strict" compliant markup, with as little extra markup as possible, but with sufficient CSS class names to allow for a wide-range of output styles to be generated by changing only the CSS.

All methods listed below (except "new") can either be called as a normal method on your $form object, or as an option in your config file. Examples will mainly be shown in YAML config syntax.

This documentation follows the convention that method arguments surrounded by square brackets [] are optional, and all other arguments are required.

BUILDING A FORM ^

new

Arguments: [\%options]

Return Value: $form

Create a new HTML::FormFu object.

Any method which can be called on the HTML::FormFu object may instead be passed as an argument to "new".

    my $form = HTML::FormFu->new({
        action        => '/search',
        method        => 'GET',
        auto_fieldset => 1,
    });

load_config_file

Arguments: $filename

Arguments: \@filenames

Return Value: $form

Accepts a filename or list of file names, whose filetypes should be of any format recognized by Config::Any.

The content of each config file is passed to "populate", and so are added to the form.

"load_config_file" may be called in a config file itself, so as to allow common settings to be kept in a single config file which may be loaded by any form.

    ---
    load_config_file:
      - file1
      - file2

YAML multiple documents within a single file. The document start marker is a line containing 3 dashes. Multiple documents will be applied in order, just as if multiple filenames had been given.

In the following example, multiple documents are taken advantage of to load another config file after the elements are added. (If this were a single document, the load_config_file would be called before elements, regardless of its position in the file).

    ---
    elements:
      - name: one
      - name: two

    ---
    load_config_file: ext.yml

Relative paths are resolved from the "config_file_path" directory if it is set, otherwise from the current working directory.

See "BEST PRACTICES" for advice on organising config files.

config_callback

Arguments: \%options

If defined, the arguments are used to create a Data::Visitor::Callback object during "load_config_file" which may be used to pre-process the config before it is sent to "populate".

For example, the code below adds a callback to a form that will dynamically alter any config value ending in ".yml" to end in ".yaml" when you call "load_config_file":

    $form->config_callback({
      plain_value => sub {
        my( $visitor, $data ) = @_;
        s/\.yml/.yaml/;
      }
    });

Default Value: not defined

This method is a special 'inherited accessor', which means it can be set on the form, a block element or a single element. When the value is read, if no value is defined it automatically traverses the element's hierarchy of parents, through any block elements and up to the form, searching for a defined value.

populate

Arguments: \%options

Return Value: $form

Each option key/value passed may be any HTML::FormFu method-name and arguments.

Provides a simple way to set multiple values, or add multiple elements to a form with a single method-call.

Attempts to call the method-names in a semi-intelligent order (see the source of populate() in HTML::FormFu::ObjectUtil for details).

default_values

Arguments: \%defaults

Return Value: $form

Set multiple field's default values from a single hash-ref.

The hash-ref's keys correspond to a form field's name, and the value is passed to the field's default method.

This should be called after all fields have been added to the form, and before "process" is called (otherwise, call "process" again before rendering the form).

config_file_path

Arguments: $directory_name

"config_file_path" defines where configuration files will be searched for, if an absolute path is not given to "load_config_file".

Default Value: not defined

This method is a special 'inherited accessor', which means it can be set on the form, a block element or a single element. When the value is read, if no value is defined it automatically traverses the element's hierarchy of parents, through any block elements and up to the form, searching for a defined value.

indicator

Arguments: $field_name

Arguments: \&coderef

If "indicator" is set to a fieldname, "submitted" will return true if a value for that fieldname was submitted.

If "indicator" is set to a code-ref, it will be called as a subroutine with the two arguments $form and $query, and its return value will be used as the return value for "submitted".

If "indicator" is not set, "submitted" will return true if a value for any known fieldname was submitted.

auto_fieldset

Arguments: 1

Arguments: \%options

Return Value: $fieldset

This setting is suitable for most basic forms, and means you can generally ignore adding fieldsets yourself.

Calling $form->auto_fieldset(1) immediately adds a fieldset element to the form. Thereafter, $form->elements() will add all elements (except fieldsets) to that fieldset, rather than directly to the form.

To be specific, the elements are added to the last fieldset on the form, so if you add another fieldset, any further elements will be added to that fieldset.

Also, you may pass a hashref to auto_fieldset(), and this will be used to set defaults for the first fieldset created.

A few examples and their output, to demonstrate:

2 elements with no fieldset.

    ---
    elements:
      - type: Text
        name: foo
      - type: Text
        name: bar

    <form action="" method="post">
      <div class="text">
        <input name="foo" type="text" />
      </div>
      <div class="text">
        <input name="bar" type="text" />
      </div>
    </form>

2 elements with an "auto_fieldset".

    ---
    auto_fieldset: 1
    elements:
      - type: Text
        name: foo
      - type: Text
        name: bar

    <form action="" method="post">
      <fieldset>
        <div class="text">
          <input name="foo" type="text" />
        </div>
        <div class="text">
          <input name="bar" type="text" />
        </div>
      </fieldset>
    </form>

The 3rd element is within a new fieldset

    ---
    auto_fieldset: { id: fs }
    elements:
      - type: Text
        name: foo
      - type: Text
        name: bar
      - type: Fieldset
      - type: Text
        name: baz

    <form action="" method="post">
      <fieldset id="fs">
        <div class="text">
          <input name="foo" type="text" />
        </div>
        <div class="text">
          <input name="bar" type="text" />
        </div>
      </fieldset>
      <fieldset>
        <div class="text">
          <input name="baz" type="text" />
        </div>
      </fieldset>
    </form>

Because of this behaviour, if you want nested fieldsets you will have to add each nested fieldset directly to its intended parent.

    my $parent = $form->get_element({ type => 'Fieldset' });

    $parent->element('fieldset');

form_error_message

Arguments: $string

Normally, input errors cause an error message to be displayed alongside the appropriate form field. If you'd also like a general error message to be displayed at the top of the form, you can set the message with "form_error_message".

To change the markup used to display the message, edit the form_error_message template file.

form_error_message_xml

Arguments: $string

If you don't want your error message to be XML-escaped, use the "form_error_message_xml" method instead.

form_error_message_loc

Arguments: $localization_key

For ease of use, if you'd like to use the provided localized error message, set "form_error_message_loc" to the value form_error_message.

You can, of course, set "form_error_message_loc" to any key in your I18N file.

force_error_message

If true, forces the "form_error_message" to be displayed even if there are no field errors.

default_args

Arguments: \%defaults

Set defaults which will be added to every element, constraint, etc. of the listed type (or derived from the listed type) which is added to the form.

For example, to make every Text element automatically have a size of 10, and make every Strftime deflator automatically get its strftime set to %d/%m/%Y:

    default_args:
        elements:
            Text:
                size: 10
        deflators:
            Strftime:
                strftime: '%d/%m/%Y'

To take it even further, you can even make all DateTime elements automatically get an appropriate Strftime deflator and a DateTime inflator:

    default_args:
        elements:
            DateTime:
                deflators:
                    type: Strftime
                    strftime: '%d-%m-%Y'
                inflators:
                    type: DateTime
                    parser:
                        strptime: '%d-%m-%Y'

To have defaults only be applied to the specific named type, rather than searching through derived types, append the type-name with +.

For example, to have the following attributes only be applied to a Block element, rather than any element that inherits from Block, such as Multi:

    default_args:
        elements:
            +Block:
                attributes:
                    class: block

Note: Unlike the proper methods which have aliases, for example "elements" which is an alias for "element" - the keys given to default_args must be of the plural form, e.g.:

    default_args:
        elements:          {}
        deflators:         {}
        filters:           {}
        constraints:       {}
        inflators:         {}
        validators:        {}
        transformers:      {}
        output_processors: {}

javascript

Arguments: [$javascript]

If set, the contents will be rendered within a script tag, inside the top of the form.

stash

Arguments: [\%private_stash]

Return Value: \%stash

Provides a hash-ref in which you can store any data you might want to associate with the form.

    ---
    stash:
      foo: value
      bar: value

elements

element

Arguments: $type

Arguments: \%options

Return Value: $element

Arguments: \@arrayref_of_types_or_options

Return Value: @elements

Adds a new element to the form. See "CORE FORM FIELDS" in HTML::FormFu::Element and "OTHER CORE ELEMENTS" in HTML::FormFu::Element for a list of core elements.

If you want to load an element from a namespace other than HTML::FormFu::Element::, you can use a fully qualified package-name by prefixing it with +.

    ---
    elements:
      - type: +MyApp::CustomElement
        name: foo

If a type is not provided in the \%options, the default Text will be used.

"element" is an alias for "elements".

deflators

deflator

Arguments: $type

Arguments: \%options

Return Value: $deflator

Arguments: \@arrayref_of_types_or_options

Return Value: @deflators

A deflator may be associated with any form field, and allows you to provide $field->default with a value which may be an object.

If an object doesn't stringify to a suitable value for display, the deflator can ensure that the form field receives a suitable string value instead.

See "CORE DEFLATORS" in HTML::FormFu::Deflator for a list of core deflators.

If a name attribute isn't provided, a new deflator is created for and added to every field on the form.

If you want to load a deflator in a namespace other than HTML::FormFu::Deflator::, you can use a fully qualified package-name by prefixing it with +.

"deflator" is an alias for "deflators".

insert_before

Arguments: $new_element, $existing_element

Return Value: $new_element

The 1st argument must be the element you want added, the 2nd argument must be the existing element that the new element should be placed before.

    my $new = $form->element(\%specs);

    my $position = $form->get_element({ type => $type, name => $name });

    $form->insert_before( $new, $position );

In the first line of the above example, the $new element is initially added to the end of the form. However, the insert_before method reparents the $new element, so it will no longer be on the end of the form. Because of this, if you try to copy an element from one form to another, it will 'steal' the element, instead of copying it. In this case, you must use clone:

    my $new = $form1->get_element({ type => $type1, name => $name1 })
                    ->clone;

    my $position = $form2->get_element({ type => $type2, name => $name2 });

    $form2->insert_before( $new, $position );

insert_after

Arguments: $new_element, $existing_element

Return Value: $new_element

The 1st argument must be the element you want added, the 2nd argument must be the existing element that the new element should be placed after.

    my $new = $form->element(\%specs);

    my $position = $form->get_element({ type => $type, name => $name });

    $form->insert_after( $new, $position );

In the first line of the above example, the $new element is initially added to the end of the form. However, the insert_after method reparents the $new element, so it will no longer be on the end of the form. Because of this, if you try to copy an element from one form to another, it will 'steal' the element, instead of copying it. In this case, you must use clone:

    my $new = $form1->get_element({ type => $type1, name => $name1 })
                    ->clone;

    my $position = $form2->get_element({ type => $type2, name => $name2 });

    $form2->insert_after( $new, $position );

remove_element

Arguments: $element

Return Value: $element

Removes the $element from the form or block's array of children.

    $form->remove_element( $element );

The orphaned element cannot be usefully used for anything until it is re-attached to a form or block with "insert_before" or "insert_after".

FORM LOGIC AND VALIDATION ^

HTML::FormFu provides several stages for what is traditionally described as validation. These are:

HTML::FormFu::Filter
HTML::FormFu::Constraint
HTML::FormFu::Inflator
HTML::FormFu::Validator
HTML::FormFu::Transformer

The first stage, the filters, allow for cleanup of user-input, such as encoding, or removing leading/trailing whitespace, or removing non-digit characters from a creditcard number.

All of the following stages allow for more complex processing, and each of them have a mechanism to allow exceptions to be thrown, to represent input errors. In each stage, all form fields must be processed without error for the next stage to proceed. If there were any errors, the form should be re-displayed to the user, to allow them to input correct values.

Constraints are intended for low-level validation of values, such as "is this an integer?", "is this value within bounds?" or "is this a valid email address?".

Inflators are intended to allow a value to be turned into an appropriate object. The resulting object will be passed to subsequent Validators and Transformers, and will also be returned by "params" and "param".

Validators are intended for higher-level validation, such as business-logic and database constraints such as "is this username unique?". Validators are only run if all Constraints and Inflators have run without errors. It is expected that most Validators will be application-specific, and so each will be implemented as a separate class written by the HTML::FormFu user.

filters

filter

Arguments: $type

Arguments: \%options

Return Value: $filter

Arguments: \@arrayref_of_types_or_options

Return Value: @filters

If you provide a name or names value, the filter will be added to just that named field. If you do not provide a name or names value, the filter will be added to all fields already attached to the form.

See "CORE FILTERS" in HTML::FormFu::Filter for a list of core filters.

If you want to load a filter in a namespace other than HTML::FormFu::Filter::, you can use a fully qualified package-name by prefixing it with +.

"filter" is an alias for "filters".

constraints

constraint

Arguments: $type

Arguments: \%options

Return Value: $constraint

Arguments: \@arrayref_of_types_or_options

Return Value: @constraints

See "CORE CONSTRAINTS" in HTML::FormFu::Constraint for a list of core constraints.

If a name attribute isn't provided, a new constraint is created for and added to every field on the form.

If you want to load a constraint in a namespace other than HTML::FormFu::Constraint::, you can use a fully qualified package-name by prefixing it with +.

"constraint" is an alias for "constraints".

inflators

inflator

Arguments: $type

Arguments: \%options

Return Value: $inflator

Arguments: \@arrayref_of_types_or_options

Return Value: @inflators

See "CORE INFLATORS" in HTML::FormFu::Inflator for a list of core inflators.

If a name attribute isn't provided, a new inflator is created for and added to every field on the form.

If you want to load an inflator in a namespace other than HTML::FormFu::Inflator::, you can use a fully qualified package-name by prefixing it with +.

"inflator" is an alias for "inflators".

validators

validator

Arguments: $type

Arguments: \%options

Return Value: $validator

Arguments: \@arrayref_of_types_or_options

Return Value: @validators

See "CORE VALIDATORS" in HTML::FormFu::Validator for a list of core validators.

If a name attribute isn't provided, a new validator is created for and added to every field on the form.

If you want to load a validator in a namespace other than HTML::FormFu::Validator::, you can use a fully qualified package-name by prefixing it with +.

"validator" is an alias for "validators".

transformers

transformer

Arguments: $type

Arguments: \%options

Return Value: $transformer

Arguments: \@arrayref_of_types_or_options

Return Value: @transformers

See "CORE TRANSFORMERS" in HTML::FormFu::Transformer for a list of core transformers.

If a name attribute isn't provided, a new transformer is created for and added to every field on the form.

If you want to load a transformer in a namespace other than HTML::FormFu::Transformer::, you can use a fully qualified package-name by prefixing it with +.

"transformer" is an alias for "transformers".

CHANGING DEFAULT BEHAVIOUR ^

render_processed_value

The default behaviour when re-displaying a form after a submission, is that the field contains the original unchanged user-submitted value.

If "render_processed_value" is true, the field value will be the final result after all Filters, Inflators and Transformers have been run. Deflators will also be run on the value.

If you set this on a field with an Inflator, but without an equivalent Deflator, you should ensure that the Inflators stringify back to a usable value, so as not to confuse / annoy the user.

Default Value: false

This method is a special 'inherited accessor', which means it can be set on the form, a block element or a single element. When the value is read, if no value is defined it automatically traverses the element's hierarchy of parents, through any block elements and up to the form, searching for a defined value.

force_errors

Force a constraint to fail, regardless of user input.

If this is called at runtime, after the form has already been processed, you must called "process" in HTML::FormFu again before redisplaying the form to the user.

Default Value: false

This method is a special 'inherited accessor', which means it can be set on the form, a block element, an element or a single constraint. When the value is read, if no value is defined it automatically traverses the element's hierarchy of parents, through any block elements and up to the form, searching for a defined value.

params_ignore_underscore

If true, causes "params", "param" and "valid" to ignore any fields whose name starts with an underscore _.

The field is still processed as normal, and errors will cause "submitted_and_valid" to return false.

Default Value: false

FORM ATTRIBUTES ^

All attributes are added to the rendered form's start tag.

attributes

attrs

Arguments: [%attributes]

Arguments: [\%attributes]

Return Value: $form

Accepts either a list of key/value pairs, or a hash-ref.

    ---
    attributes:
      id: form
      class: fancy_form

As a special case, if no arguments are passed, the attributes hash-ref is returned. This allows the following idioms.

    # set a value
    $form->attributes->{id} = 'form';

    # delete all attributes
    %{ $form->attributes } = ();

"attrs" is an alias for "attributes".

attributes_xml

attrs_xml

Provides the same functionality as "attributes", but values won't be XML-escaped.

"attrs_xml" is an alias for "attributes_xml".

add_attributes

add_attrs

Arguments: [%attributes]

Arguments: [\%attributes]

Return Value: $form

Accepts either a list of key/value pairs, or a hash-ref.

    $form->add_attributes( $key => $value );
    $form->add_attributes( { $key => $value } );

All values are appended to existing values, with a preceding space character. This is primarily to allow the easy addition of new names to the class attribute.

    $form->attributes({ class => 'foo' });

    $form->add_attributes({ class => 'bar' });

    # class is now 'foo bar'

"add_attrs" is an alias for "add_attributes".

add_attributes_xml

add_attrs_xml

Provides the same functionality as "add_attributes", but values won't be XML-escaped.

"add_attrs_xml" is an alias for "add_attributes_xml".

del_attributes

del_attrs

Arguments: [%attributes]

Arguments: [\%attributes]

Return Value: $form

Accepts either a list of key/value pairs, or a hash-ref.

    $form->del_attributes( $key => $value );
    $form->del_attributes( { $key => $value } );

All values are removed from the attribute value.

    $form->attributes({ class => 'foo bar' });

    $form->del_attributes({ class => 'bar' });

    # class is now 'foo'

"del_attrs" is an alias for "del_attributes".

del_attributes_xml

del_attrs_xml

Provides the same functionality as "del_attributes", but values won't be XML-escaped.

"del_attrs_xml" is an alias for "del_attributes_xml".

The following methods are shortcuts for accessing "attributes" keys.

id

Arguments: [$id]

Return Value: $id

Get or set the form's DOM id.

Default Value: none

action

Arguments: [$uri]

Return Value: $uri

Get or set the action associated with the form. The default is no action, which causes most browsers to submit to the current URI.

Default Value: ""

enctype

Arguments: [$enctype]

Return Value: $enctype

Get or set the encoding type of the form. Valid values are application/x-www-form-urlencoded and multipart/form-data.

If the form contains a File element, the enctype is automatically set to multipart/form-data.

method

Arguments: [$method]

Return Value: $method

Get or set the method used to submit the form. Can be set to either "post" or "get".

Default Value: "post"

CSS CLASSES ^

auto_id

Arguments: [$string]

If set, then each form field will be given an auto-generated id attribute, if it doesn't have one already.

The following character substitution will be performed: %f will be replaced by $form->id, %n will be replaced by $field->name, %r will be replaced by $block->repeatable_count.

Default Value: not defined

This method is a special 'inherited accessor', which means it can be set on the form, a block element or a single element. When the value is read, if no value is defined it automatically traverses the element's hierarchy of parents, through any block elements and up to the form, searching for a defined value.

auto_label

Arguments: [$string]

If set, then each form field will be given an auto-generated label, if it doesn't have one already.

The following character substitution will be performed: %f will be replaced by $form->id, %n will be replaced by $field->name.

The generated string will be passed to "localize" to create the label.

Default Value: not defined

This method is a special 'inherited accessor', which means it can be set on the form, a block element or a single element. When the value is read, if no value is defined it automatically traverses the element's hierarchy of parents, through any block elements and up to the form, searching for a defined value.

auto_error_class

Arguments: [$string]

If set, then each form error will be given an auto-generated class-name.

The following character substitution will be performed: %f will be replaced by $form->id, %n will be replaced by $field->name, %t will be replaced by lc( $field->type ), %s will be replaced by $error->stage.

Default Value: 'error_%s_%t'

This method is a special 'inherited accessor', which means it can be set on the form, a block element or a single element. When the value is read, if no value is defined it automatically traverses the element's hierarchy of parents, through any block elements and up to the form, searching for a defined value.

auto_error_message

Arguments: [$string]

If set, then each form field will be given an auto-generated message, if it doesn't have one already.

The following character substitution will be performed: %f will be replaced by $form->id, %n will be replaced by $field->name, %t will be replaced by lc( $field->type ), %s will be replaced by $error->stage.

The generated string will be passed to "localize" to create the message.

For example, a Required constraint will return the string form_constraint_required. Under the default localization behaviour, the appropriate message for form_constraint_required will be used from the default I18N package.

Default Value: 'form_%s_%t'

This method is a special 'inherited accessor', which means it can be set on the form, a block element or a single element. When the value is read, if no value is defined it automatically traverses the element's hierarchy of parents, through any block elements and up to the form, searching for a defined value.

auto_constraint_class

Arguments: [$string]

If set, then each form field will be given an auto-generated class-name for each associated constraint.

The following character substitution will be performed: %f will be replaced by $form->id, %n will be replaced by $field->name, %t will be replaced by lc( $field->type ).

Default Value: not defined

This method is a special 'inherited accessor', which means it can be set on the form, a block element or a single element. When the value is read, if no value is defined it automatically traverses the element's hierarchy of parents, through any block elements and up to the form, searching for a defined value.

auto_inflator_class

Arguments: [$string]

If set, then each form field will be given an auto-generated class-name for each associated inflator.

The following character substitution will be performed: %f will be replaced by $form->id, %n will be replaced by $field->name, %t will be replaced by lc( $field->type ).

Default Value: not defined

This method is a special 'inherited accessor', which means it can be set on the form, a block element or a single element. When the value is read, if no value is defined it automatically traverses the element's hierarchy of parents, through any block elements and up to the form, searching for a defined value.

auto_validator_class

Arguments: [$string]

If set, then each form field will be given an auto-generated class-name for each associated validator.

The following character substitution will be performed: %f will be replaced by $form->id, %n will be replaced by $field->name, %t will be replaced by lc( $field->type ).

Default Value: not defined

This method is a special 'inherited accessor', which means it can be set on the form, a block element or a single element. When the value is read, if no value is defined it automatically traverses the element's hierarchy of parents, through any block elements and up to the form, searching for a defined value.

auto_transformer_class

Arguments: [$string]

If set, then each form field will be given an auto-generated class-name for each associated validator.

The following character substitution will be performed: %f will be replaced by $form->id, %n will be replaced by $field->name, %t will be replaced by lc( $field->type ).

Default Value: not defined

This method is a special 'inherited accessor', which means it can be set on the form, a block element or a single element. When the value is read, if no value is defined it automatically traverses the element's hierarchy of parents, through any block elements and up to the form, searching for a defined value.

form_error_message_class

Arguments: [$string]

Default Value: 'form_error_message'

Class attribute for the error message displayed at the top of the form.

See "form_error_message"

LOCALIZATION ^

languages

Arguments: [\@languages]

A list of languages which will be passed to the localization object.

Default Value: ['en']

localize_class

Arguments: [$class_name]

Classname to be used for the default localization object.

Default Value: 'HTML::FormFu::I18N'

localize

loc

Arguments: [$key, @arguments]

Compatible with the maketext method in Locale::Maketext.

locale

Arguments: $locale

Currently only used by HTML::FormFu::Deflator::FormatNumber and HTML::FormFu::Filter::FormatNumber.

This method is a special 'inherited accessor', which means it can be set on the form, a block element or a single element. When the value is read, if no value is defined it automatically traverses the element's hierarchy of parents, through any block elements and up to the form, searching for a defined value.

PROCESSING A FORM ^

query

Arguments: [$query_object]

Arguments: \%params

Provide a CGI compatible query object or a hash-ref of submitted names/values. Alternatively, the query object can be passed directly to the "process" object.

query_type

Arguments: [$query_type]

Set which module is being used to provide the "query".

The Catalyst::Controller::HTML::FormFu automatically sets this to Catalyst.

Valid values are CGI, Catalyst and CGI::Simple.

Default Value: 'CGI'

process

Arguments: [$query_object]

Arguments: [\%params]

Process the provided query object or input values. process must be called before calling any of the methods listed under "SUBMITTED FORM VALUES AND ERRORS" and "MODIFYING A SUBMITTED FORM".

process must also be called at least once before printing the form or calling "render" or "render_data".

Note to users of Catalyst::Controller::HTML::FormFu: Because "process" is automatically called for you by the Catalyst controller; if you make any modifications to the form within your action method, such as adding or changing elements, adding constraints, etc; you must call "process" again yourself before using "submitted_and_valid", any of the methods listed under "SUBMITTED FORM VALUES AND ERRORS" or "MODIFYING A SUBMITTED FORM", or rendering the form.

SUBMITTED FORM VALUES AND ERRORS ^

submitted

Returns true if the form has been submitted. See "indicator" for details on how this is computed.

submitted_and_valid

Shorthand for $form->submitted && !$form->has_errors

params

Return Value: \%params

Returns a hash-ref of all valid input for which there were no errors.

param_value

Arguments: $field_name

A more reliable, recommended version of "param". Guaranteed to always return a single value, regardless of whether it's called in list context or not. If multiple values were submitted, this only returns the first value. If the value is invalid or the form was not submitted, it returns undef. This makes it suitable for use in list context, where a single value is required.

    $db->update({
        name    => $form->param_value('name'),
        address => $form->param_value('address),
    });

param_array

Arguments: $field_name

Guaranteed to always return an array-ref of values, regardless of context and regardless of whether multiple values were submitted or not. If the value is invalid or the form was not submitted, it returns an empty array-ref.

param_list

Arguments: $field_name

Guaranteed to always return a list of values, regardless of context. If the value is invalid or the form was not submitted, it returns an empty list.

param

Arguments: [$field_name]

Return Value: $input_value

Return Value: @valid_names

No longer recommended for use, as its behaviour is hard to predict. Use "param_value", "param_array" or "param_list" instead.

A (readonly) method similar to that of CGI's.

If a field name is given, in list-context returns any valid values submitted for that field, and in scalar-context returns only the first of any valid values submitted for that field.

If no argument is given, returns a list of all valid input field names without errors.

Passing more than 1 argument is a fatal error.

valid

Arguments: [$field_name]

Return Value: @valid_names

Return Value: $bool

If a field name if given, returns true if that field had no errors and false if there were errors.

If no argument is given, returns a list of all valid input field names without errors.

has_errors

Arguments: [$field_name]

Return Value: @names

Return Value: $bool

If a field name if given, returns true if that field had errors and false if there were no errors.

If no argument is given, returns a list of all input field names with errors.

get_errors

Arguments: [%options]

Arguments: [\%options]

Return Value: \@errors

Returns an array-ref of exception objects from all fields in the form.

Accepts both name, type and stage arguments to narrow the returned results.

    $form->get_errors({
        name  => 'foo',
        type  => 'Regex',
        stage => 'constraint'
    });

get_error

Arguments: [%options]

Arguments: [\%options]

Return Value: $error

Accepts the same arguments as "get_errors", but only returns the first error found.

MODEL / DATABASE INTERACTION ^

See HTML::FormFu::Model for further details and available models.

default_model

Arguments: $model_name

Default Value: 'DBIC'

model

Arguments: [$model_name]

Return Value: $model

model_config

Arguments: \%config

MODIFYING A SUBMITTED FORM ^

add_valid

Arguments: $name, $value

Return Value: $value

The provided value replaces any current value for the named field. This value will be returned in subsequent calls to "params" and "param" and the named field will be included in calculations for "valid".

clear_errors

Deletes all errors from a submitted form.

RENDERING A FORM ^

render

Return Value: $string

You must call "process" once after building the form, and before calling "render".

start

Return Value: $string

Returns the form start tag, and any output of "form_error_message" and "javascript".

Implicitly uses the tt "render_method".

end

Return Value: $string

Returns the form end tag.

Implicitly uses the tt "render_method".

hidden_fields

Return Value: $string

Returns all hidden form fields.

PLUGIN SYSTEM ^

HTML::FormFu provides a plugin-system that allows plugins to be easily added to a form or element, to change the default behaviour or output.

See HTML::FormFu::Plugin for details.

ADVANCED CUSTOMISATION ^

By default, formfu renders "XHTML 1.0 Strict" compliant markup, with as little extra markup as possible, but with sufficient CSS class names to allow for a wide-range of output styles to be generated by changing only the CSS.

If you wish to customise the markup, you'll need to tell HTML::FormFu to use an external rendering engine, such as Template Toolkit or Template::Alloy. See "render_method" and "tt_module" for details.

Even if you set HTML::FormFu to use Template::Toolkit to render, the forms, HTML::FormFu can still be used in conjunction with whichever other templating system you prefer to use for your own page layouts, whether it's HTML::Template: <TMPL_VAR form>, Petal: <form tal:replace="form"></form> or Template::Magic: <!-- {form} -->.

render_method

Default Value: string

Can be set to tt to generate the form with external template files.

To customise the markup, you'll need a copy of the template files, local to your application. See "Installing the TT templates" in HTML::FormFu::Manual::Cookbook for further details.

You can customise the markup for a single element by setting that element's "render_method" to tt, while the rest of the form uses the default string render-method. Note though, that if you try setting the form or a Block's "render_method" to tt, and then set a child element's "render_method" to string, that setting will be ignored, and the child elements will still use the tt render-method.

    ---
    elements:
      - name: foo
        render_method: tt
        filename: custom_field

      - name: bar

    # in this example, 'foo' will use a custom template,
    # while bar will use the default 'string' rendering method

This method is a special 'inherited accessor', which means it can be set on the form, a block element or a single element. When the value is read, if no value is defined it automatically traverses the element's hierarchy of parents, through any block elements and up to the form, searching for a defined value.

filename

Change the template filename used for the form.

Default Value: "form"

tt_args

Arguments: [\%constructor_arguments]

Accepts a hash-ref of arguments passed to "render_method", which is called internally by "render".

Within tt_args, the keys RELATIVE and RECURSION are overridden to always be true, as these are a basic requirement for the Template engine.

The system directory containing HTML::FormFu's template files is always added to the end of INCLUDE_PATH, so that the core template files will be found. You only need to set this yourself if you have your own copy of the template files for customisation purposes.

This method is a special 'inherited accessor', which means it can be set on the form, a block element or a single element. When the value is read, if no value is defined it automatically traverses the element's hierarchy of parents, through any block elements and up to the form, searching for a defined value.

add_tt_args

Arguments: [\%constructor_arguments]

Ensures that the hash-ref argument is merged with any existing hash-ref value of "tt_args".

tt_module

Default Value: Template

The module used when "render_method" is set to tt. Should provide an interface compatible with Template.

This method is a special 'inherited accessor', which means it can be set on the form, a block element or a single element. When the value is read, if no value is defined it automatically traverses the element's hierarchy of parents, through any block elements and up to the form, searching for a defined value.

render_data

Usually called implicitly by "render". Returns the data structure that would normally be passed onto the string or tt render-methods.

As with "render", you must call "process" once after building the form, and before calling "render_data".

render_data_non_recursive

Like "render_data", but doesn't include the data for any child-elements.

INTROSPECTION ^

get_fields

Arguments: [%options]

Arguments: [\%options]

Return Value: \@elements

Returns all fields in the form (specifically, all elements which have a true "is_field" in HTML::FormFu::Element value).

Accepts both name and type arguments to narrow the returned results.

    $form->get_fields({
        name => 'foo',
        type => 'Radio',
    });

Accepts also an Regexp to search for results.

    $form->get_elements({
        name => qr/oo/,
    });

get_field

Arguments: [%options]

Arguments: [\%options]

Return Value: $element

Accepts the same arguments as "get_fields", but only returns the first field found.

get_elements

Arguments: [%options]

Arguments: [\%options]

Return Value: \@elements

Returns all top-level elements in the form (not recursive). See "get_all_elements" for a recursive version.

Accepts both name and type arguments to narrow the returned results.

    $form->get_elements({
        name => 'foo',
        type => 'Radio',
    });

Accepts also an Regexp to search for results.

    $form->get_elements({
        name => qr/oo/,
    });

get_element

Arguments: [%options]

Arguments: [\%options]

Return Value: $element

Accepts the same arguments as "get_elements", but only returns the first element found.

See "get_all_element" for a recursive version.

get_all_elements

Arguments: [%options]

Arguments: [\%options]

Return Value: \@elements

Returns all elements in the form recursively.

Optionally accepts both name and type arguments to narrow the returned results.

    # return all Text elements

    $form->get_all_elements({
        type => 'Text',
    });

Accepts also an Regexp to search for results.

    $form->get_elements({
        name => qr/oo/,
    });

See "get_elements" for a non-recursive version.

get_all_element

Arguments: [%options]

Arguments: [\%options]

Return Value: $element

Accepts the same arguments as "get_all_elements", but only returns the first element found.

    # return the first Text field found, regardless of whether it's
    # within a fieldset or not

    $form->get_all_element({
        type => 'Text',
    });

Accepts also an Regexp to search for results.

    $form->get_elements({
        name => qr/oo/,
    });

See "get_all_elements" for a non-recursive version.

get_deflators

Arguments: [%options]

Arguments: [\%options]

Return Value: \@deflators

Returns all top-level deflators from all fields.

Accepts both name and type arguments to narrow the returned results.

    $form->get_deflators({
        name => 'foo',
        type => 'Strftime',
    });

get_deflator

Arguments: [%options]

Arguments: [\%options]

Return Value: $element

Accepts the same arguments as "get_deflators", but only returns the first deflator found.

get_filters

Arguments: [%options]

Arguments: [\%options]

Return Value: \@filters

Returns all top-level filters from all fields.

Accepts both name and type arguments to narrow the returned results.

    $form->get_filters({
        name => 'foo',
        type => 'LowerCase',
    });

get_filter

Arguments: [%options]

Arguments: [\%options]

Return Value: $filter

Accepts the same arguments as "get_filters", but only returns the first filter found.

get_constraints

Arguments: [%options]

Arguments: [\%options]

Return Value: \@constraints

Returns all constraints from all fields.

Accepts both name and type arguments to narrow the returned results.

    $form->get_constraints({
        name => 'foo',
        type => 'Equal',
    });

get_constraint

Arguments: [%options]

Arguments: [\%options]

Return Value: $constraint

Accepts the same arguments as "get_constraints", but only returns the first constraint found.

get_inflators

Arguments: [%options]

Arguments: [\%options]

Return Value: \@inflators

Returns all inflators from all fields.

Accepts both name and type arguments to narrow the returned results.

    $form->get_inflators({
        name => 'foo',
        type => 'DateTime',
    });

get_inflator

Arguments: [%options]

Arguments: [\%options]

Return Value: $inflator

Accepts the same arguments as "get_inflators", but only returns the first inflator found.

get_validators

Arguments: [%options]

Arguments: [\%options]

Return Value: \@validators

Returns all validators from all fields.

Accepts both name and type arguments to narrow the returned results.

    $form->get_validators({
        name => 'foo',
        type => 'Callback',
    });

get_validator

Arguments: [%options]

Arguments: [\%options]

Return Value: $validator

Accepts the same arguments as "get_validators", but only returns the first validator found.

get_transformers

Arguments: [%options]

Arguments: [\%options]

Return Value: \@transformers

Returns all transformers from all fields.

Accepts both name and type arguments to narrow the returned results.

    $form->get_transformers({
        name => 'foo',
        type => 'Callback',
    });

get_transformer

Arguments: [%options]

Arguments: [\%options]

Return Value: $transformer

Accepts the same arguments as "get_transformers", but only returns the first transformer found.

clone

Returns a deep clone of the <$form> object.

Because of scoping issues, code references (such as in Callback constraints) are copied instead of cloned.

DEPRECATION POLICY ^

We try our best to not make incompatible changes, but if they're required we'll make every effort possible to provide backwards compatibility for several release-cycles, issuing a warnings about the changes, before removing the legacy features.

REMOVED METHODS ^

See also "REMOVED METHODS" in HTML::FormFu::Element.

element_defaults

Has been removed; see "default_args" instead.

model_class

Has been removed; use "default_model" instead.

defaults_from_model

Has been removed; use "default_values" in HTML::FormFu::Model instead.

save_to_model

Has been removed; use "update" in HTML::FormFu::Model instead.

BEST PRACTICES ^

It is advisable to keep application-wide (or global) settings in a single config file, which should be loaded by each form.

See "load_config_file".

COOKBOOK ^

HTML::FormFu::Manual::Cookbook

UNICODE

HTML::FormFu::Manual::Unicode

EXAMPLES ^

vertically-aligned CSS

The distribution directory examples/vertically-aligned contains a form with example CSS for a "vertically aligned" theme.

This can be viewed by opening the file vertically-aligned.html in a web-browser.

If you wish to experiment with making changes, the form is defined in file vertically-aligned.yml, and the HTML file can be updated with any changes by running the following command (while in the distribution root directory).

    perl examples/vertically-aligned/vertically-aligned.pl

This uses the Template Toolkit file vertically-aligned.tt, and the CSS is defined in files vertically-aligned.css and vertically-aligned-ie.css.

SUPPORT ^

Website:

http://www.formfu.org

Project Page:

http://code.google.com/p/html-formfu/

Mailing list:

http://lists.scsys.co.uk/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/html-formfu

Mailing list archives:

http://lists.scsys.co.uk/pipermail/html-formfu/

IRC:

irc.perl.org, channel #formfu

The HTML::Widget archives http://lists.scsys.co.uk/pipermail/html-widget/ between January and May 2007 also contain discussion regarding HTML::FormFu.

BUGS ^

Please submit bugs / feature requests to http://code.google.com/p/html-formfu/issues/list (preferred) or http://rt.perl.org.

PATCHES ^

To help patches be applied quickly, please send them to the mailing list; attached, rather than inline; against subversion, rather than a cpan version (run svn diff > patchfile); mention which svn version it's against. Mailing list messages are limited to 256KB, so gzip the patch if necessary.

GITHUB REPOSITORY ^

This module's sourcecode is maintained in a git repository at git://github.com/fireartist/HTML-FormFu.git

The project page is https://github.com/fireartist/HTML-FormFu

SEE ALSO ^

HTML::FormFu::Imager

Catalyst::Controller::HTML::FormFu

HTML::FormFu::Model::DBIC

AUTHORS ^

Carl Franks

CONTRIBUTORS ^

Brian Cassidy

Ozum Eldogan

Ruben Fonseca

Ronald Kimball

Daisuke Maki

Andreas Marienborg

Mario Minati

Steve Nolte

Moritz Onken

Doug Orleans

Matthias Dietrich

Based on the original source code of HTML::Widget, by Sebastian Riedel, sri@oook.de.

LICENSE ^

This library is free software, you can redistribute it and/or modify it under the same terms as Perl itself.

PERL GAME ^

Play the MMO written in perl: http://www.lacunaexpanse.com!

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