Structured Content Initiative

Summary

The main goal of this initiative is to build better, native support for custom, semantically structured content element types for TYPO3.

The focus for us is always:
Do not look at the current implementation and limitation, but rather find the best user experience first, then look at technologies!

Goals

  • We want to create a better experience for editors to work with content types in a more intuitive way.
  • We want  integrators to build such content types easily, semantically correct and flexible /re-usable. These content types are not bound to layouts, templates, or technologies like FlexForms.

Background

There are several reasons why people are constantly asking for structured content or content structures in the TYPO3 core for a long time.

Sometimes a flexible use of multiple columns or maybe even more complex layouts to structure content is required. Some use cases developers/ integrators are often struggling with are flexible accordions, content containers as content elements, restrictions on content element placement and drag & drop. Unfortunately some of the current solutions have often led to problems with upgrade or migration.

On top, TYPO3 should provide a semantically correct way for defining custom content types.

This initiative was inspired by forge epic and blueprint, but will provide its own concepts for the goals.

Scope

First find the best user experience and expectations, and then look at existing or new technologies.

During our analysis of what we understand as structured content, our expectations of the initiative and taking a look into other CMS, we recognized that this topic is very complex.

To achieve results more quickly and straighten the schedule, we identified three main focus areas which should be covered in separate working groups. These working groups will act in parallel but will constantly share the working progress and ideas to ensure the common goal.

Editing Interface UX

This working group will focus on a concept for UX, creating wireframes, mockups and layouts, to make content management for the editor more intuitive.

Content Block Creation

The focus of this working group will be technical drafts and proof of concepts for content blocks and grids. This group will aim for a technical concept for registration and maintenance of content blocks as well as a re-evaluation of processes for storing and connecting data of content blocks. Further it will develop a technical concept for a dynamic grid system based on UX wireframes of the Editing Interface UX group.

Rendering Group

Containers, wrappers etc. will be the things this working group will concentrate on. A concept for semantic content interpretation in the frontend is therefore the first goal to be achieved. Implementation of backend UI/ UX improvements will also be covered by this group.

Not in Scope:

  • Frontend editing

To ensure a good team spirit within our initiative despite different opinions and suggestions we added some more statements to the regular TYPO3 Code of Conduct.

Image about timing (calendar)

Milestones and timing

This initiative is a long-term project with huge tasks. As a lot of work on different topics happens in parallel, we created a deliverables roadmap that schedules the single tasks of the deliverables in short, mid and long terms.

As for communication and group interaction: there are monthly Slack calls for exchange between the working groups (of course not all participants of the working groups are required to participate in those) and at least one call per month for each group. Apart from that we organize out-of-schedule calls for specific topics like roadmap etc.

Current Status

Find out about our latest accomplishments in our last month report.

For overall status take a look at our deliverables roadmap.

Get involved!

Team

Rachel Foucard
Editing Interface UX (Lead)

Lidia Demin
Content Block Creation (Lead)
Editing Interface UX 

André Kraus
Rendering Group (Lead)

Annett Jähnichen
Editing Interface UX
Content Block Creation

Benjamin Kott
Editing Interface UX
Rendering Group

Jo Hasenau
Editing Interface UX
Rendering Group

Claus Due
Editing Interface UX
Content Block Creation

Kay Strobach
Content Block Creation

Kevin Appelt
Rendering Group
Content Block Creation

Rodger Rüdiger
Rendering Group

Jonas Eberle
Rendering Group

Oliver Hader
Product Team

Benni Mack
Product Team

You?