Nesting forms or a way around it?

So I know that you cannot nest forms in HTML as I’ve found out today,
but I have a need to do this or get around it.

You can see the admin panel I’m building at:
http://www.juiceboxcommunications.com/admin/subscribers

Click on the empty space in one of the table results to fly out
complete subscriber data.
In there, there’s a submit, I was trying to have a form for each
subscriber which submits.

I also need a form around the checkboxes though, so I can handle the
functions in the right panel such as select all, add selected to
category, etc. etc.

The trouble is, that in my code involves nesting a form around the
checkboxes (which involves nesting around the rest of the results). So
I need a faux way to nest forms, or another workable solution if anyone
has dealt with this.

the code is like this:

<% for subscriber in @subscribers %>
<%= check_box(‘subscriber’, ‘checkBox’, :name => ‘subscriber_ids[]’,
:id => subscriber.id )%>
<%= text_field(‘subscriber’, ‘firstName’, :value =>
subscriber.firstName ) %>
<%= text_field(‘subscriber’, ‘lastName’, :value =>
subscriber.lastName ) %>
etc.
etc.
<% end %>

If anyone has experience with this, it is much appreciated.

Jason

Have a look at *form_remote_tag *that might help

I’m not really a web developer so I might be missing some potential
problems here, but from what I understand, there are many possible ways
around the problem:
a) Use one form around everything, but have the various Submit buttons
rewrite the
form’s “action” attribute to redirect the form to different actions or
even controllers. Each controller/action then decides, what data from
the form is relevant to that particular action and ignores the rest
b) Use one form, but have the various Submit buttons set some parameters
in a hidden field that your controller can see and decide what the
intended action was
c) Use multiple forms, but make them not nested in html. You could use
some css positioning (and/or javascript if necessary) to make them
visually appear in the right places

Cheers,
Mati

Mati wrote:

intended action was
c) Use multiple forms, but make them not nested in html. You could use
some css positioning (and/or javascript if necessary) to make them
visually appear in the right places

Yes.

Another way is to dispose of either the outer form
or inner set of forms and instead submit that data
using submit_to_remote and its :submit parameter.


We develop, watch us RoR, in numbers too big to ignore.

Mati wrote:

c) Use multiple forms, but make them not nested in html. You could use
some css positioning (and/or javascript if necessary) to make them
visually appear in the right places

I would second this. Might be a pain to hack, but I’m not aware of any
common way to trick the browser into nesting forms.

Although I think you can add form elements without declaring an actual
form. You could use javascript to seralize the values into a string, and
pass it via AJAX, bypassing any kind of form action. (Or if for some
reason, you can’t nest form elements, create a custom graphic checkbox,
and use an onClick event to register the true/false value and pass
through AJAX).

None of these are a particularly pretty solution. I tend to subscribe to
the philsophy that if my design attempts to do something that isn’t
generally supported or commonly done, it’s probably time to rethink my
design. Brute force hacking my way through an HTML/CSS/Javascript
problem often results in lots of frustration, and a final product that
doesn’t always feel right.

The solution I am working on right now is duplicating the checkboxes
elsewhere on the page in a form that will be hidden. Then, I use
javascript onSubmit to pass the values for ‘checked’ to the hidden form
checkboxes. It is kind of hacky, but so far it looks like it might work

  • and then I can just submit the duplicate values in a second form not
    seen by the user. Any comments from people who’ve tried this before are
    appreciated. The interface is based heavily on javascript so I’m not
    worried about people that don’t have it turned on, they can’t use the
    system anyway.

The trouble I was having in looking at the remote submit functions, is
that I don’t understand how to pass it only the values that I want to
update on my controller.

I have a controller that is:

def update_subscriber {
@subscriber = Subscriber.find(params[:id])
If @subscriber.update_attributes

do the action here

end
}

whereas if I have it submit the whole form I’m not a good enough web
developer yet to sort through all that data. Or am I making it more
complicated than it needs to be? I’ve been known to do that to myself
from time to time…

Thx,

J

The old (and backwards compatible) approach is to use one form.

When you receive the parameters, evaluate the value of the submit button
that was pressed (it’s value will be the button your user pressed.)
Based on
this, fire the appropriate method.

YIKES!!!

this would fall flat without JavaScript enabled!

with more and more users on the mobile web, backwards compatibility is
more important than ever.

On 11/21/06, Mati [email protected] wrote:

in a hidden field that your controller can see and decide what the

Chris M.
Web D.
Open Source & Web Standards Advocate
http://www.chriscodes.com/

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