A few general Perch feature suggestions

  • Jotted down a few notes after a recent Runway build. Most of these ideas are (probably) minor things, and some of them would not be new suggestions.

    In no particular order:

    * Last edited by, and date

    Surprising omission, but it would be great if all editable items in the control panel showed "Last edited by (user) on (date+time)." Bonus points for clicking that text to get a full history of edits for that item.

    * Dangerous Undo

    Possibly the world's most dangerous undo button. This loaded shotgun reverts to previous version and publishes immediately without a re-do safety net. Unless editors expect that behaviour, they may get a surprise. Suggestion might be a confirmation prompt stating what is about to happen, or even a label change to something like "revert"; or just add a re-do safety net.

    * Control panel side navigation

    Another world first - a menu with pagination - its own back button! Nobody gets it. I ended up making a custom menu for editors, which is great, but there's still an awkward back arrow and "pages" item above the custom menu. I'd like to hide that, leaving only the custom menu.

    * html links in notes-before

    Love the notes-before feature. Would love even more if I could pop an HTML link in there, so I could open a new tab with some more information for editors.

    * Tags for perch editors, similar to member tags.

    Or just a solution to have certain pages hidden or inaccessible in the control panel, from certain editors. Currently it's all or nothing.

    * If (user X is perch editor with tag y) then show page.

    Following on from above suggestion, a way to display pages on the site only if editors are logged in to control panel, and have specific tags, otherwise the page returns a 404. So basically just like member tags, except for perch control panel users. It's not practical to have editors "sign up" again to the site, just so they can see exclusive site content meant for staff only.

    * The help link in top right should open new window/tab

    Navigating away from the edit form can cause problems when going back. The help link should open new tab by default.

    * Option to omit assets from search results.

    Using global search in control panel returns everything including resources. The problem is these resources can pollute the returned results. If the user is trying to find a collection item, it would be helpful if they could optionally exclude resources from the returned results.

  • drewm

    Approved the thread.
  • * Dangerous Undo

    Absolutely. Some of us shared our thoughts on the How often do you use Undo? thread and I think this point was brought up. So hopefully we'll see this improved in v4!

    * Control panel side navigation

    Yeah I agree; there is a few issues with the side navigation in v3. The v4 announcement mentioned they are updating the control panel UI, so hopefully we'll see something better in terms of UX.

    * Tags for perch editors, similar to member tags.

    Perch already offers customisable roles. And we can already manage which roles can create sub-pages for individual pages (from the settings tab of the page edit form). This could be a good place to have a similar setting to choose which roles can/cannot access this particular page ("may be accessed by").

    * If (user X is perch editor with tag y) then show page.

    You can detect whether the user visiting the site is logged into the Perch control panel of the site. There's no public API to perform this, but you should be able to use:

    1. $logged_in = false;
    2. $Users = new PerchUsers;
    3. $CurrentUser = $Users->get_current_user();
    4. if (is_object($CurrentUser) && $CurrentUser->logged_in()) {
    5. $logged_in = true;
    6. }

    Having said that an easier way to manage this would be appreciated.

  • Hi Hussein, thanks for your thoughts.

    I tried using your Pipit plugin to detect if user is logged in, and it works except for a small glitch. Sometimes it kicks the user out of control panel, (logs them out) when editing the page where the logged-in check is happening. This might be a glitch specific to the environment here, I'm not sure. Not a big deal, but I ended up removing the Pipit plugin and instead rely solely on a hidden URL. This was for a site help page for editors, intended to be seen only by them.

    Roles are great, but I would still like tags on top of that. So that for example "Editor Pete" could have slightly different page edit access than "Editor Penny". This would also be beneficial when giving control panel access to third parties, such as marketing agencies or copywriters who may only need access to specific pages.