[pmwiki-users] Exporting/importing a structured set of pages as e.g. a spreadsheet?

Ben Stallings ben at interdependentweb.com
Mon Nov 12 15:47:52 CST 2007

Christian wrote,
> So what I'd like is a way of editing several pages at once. One way could 
> perhaps be based on some special page list with many edit buttons. I'm not 
> sure this is that easy to scale for many pages though.

It's possible to do this with ZAP, but each row has to be a separate 
form, which blows the table presentation.

> Another way might be a mechanism to take a set of structured wiki pages 
> and export them as a spreadsheet. The user then edits the spreadsheet with 
> e.g. OpenOffice. Finally he sends the spreadsheet back to the wiki, which 
> imports the changes into separate pages.
 > * The user goes to the wiki and exports a spreadsheet for a specific set
 >    of pages. He saves this spreadsheet locally.
 > * The user edits the spreadsheet.
 > * The user imports the spreadsheet back to the wiki.

This is one of the main things I use DataQuery for.  However, DataQuery 
ignores existing wiki page files in the page groups where it operates; 
any importing must be done via a spreadsheet or database table.  There 
is no easy way I'm aware of to import existing wiki page files into a 
spreadsheet.  It's worth doing!

I haven't looked at what would be required to make DataQuery work with 
WikiForms instead of ZAP.  It may be a trivial change, but I haven't had 
the time to investigate.

> Perhaps having a template for how to generate the spreadsheet could be 
> useful/flexible here.
> The main problem that I see is how to deal with the parts of the wiki page 
> that is not structured, i.e. not stored in specific fields.
> If the pages are reasonably structured, e.g. any text not in fields will 
> only occur after the fileds, then the "extra" text could just be put in a 
> column of its own.

For the record, the way DataQuery deals with this situation is to put 
the entire page text -- variables and all -- into its own column.  This 
works fine as long as the editing is only done inside the wiki, since 
both sets of changes get recorded, but if you edit the columns in a 
spreadsheet the page text will remain unchanged.

Hope this helps, and I hope someone does take on the project!  --Ben

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