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Thread: forms ..

  1. #1
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2002

    Exclamation forms ..

    Hey ..

    I am currently in the process of designing a kiosk system for a company I work at. This kiosk is very basic and will consist of a few web/html files providing general business and consumer information. It will be designed just as a normal website, except it will be running on an independent winxp box within the store.

    Alrite .. my problem starts when I come to designing my feedback/suggestion form page. I've done my research on google and around this site and I have come up with a few topics such as cgi and .hta tutorials. It is all getting pretty complicated now for a novice as myself.

    I just need to have one suggestions box to be filled out by the user and would like it to be saved to a .txt or some format of a file on the HD, that can be viewed by an employee at a later date. Is there an easier way that I haven't found ?? or do I have to start doing my research into cgi and getting a script to perform the file operations necessary.

    any help would be greatly appreciated.

  2. #2
    Senior Member roswell1329's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2002
    One thing that's great about the slew of new web technologies that have exploded in the last few years is you now have many different options on how to do something. What you are describing is a simple textarea form at it's most basic, and there are many solutions at your disposal. If you are a novice to web development that can hinder you a bit, but you should still have a few choices.

    First, if you have ANY programming experience (perl, shell, java, c/c++, etc...), a CGI script to handle the text submitted by a user might be the simplest way to go. You can write a CGI script in nearly any language that is supported by your web server. When a user submits a form to a CGI script using method POST, the form data is submitted like this:

    QUERY_STRING data1=Data+from+your+first+field&data2=Data+from+your+second+field+

    Just write a CGI script to handle that data however you want, and you'll be good to go. Easier said than done, but many languages now have built-in methods of communicating with Web Browsers. Perl and Python jump to mind as popular ones.

    Besides writing a CGI script to handle the form, you could also use PHP. Again, this is a programming language, but PHP uses a different mechanism for execution, and it gives the web developer a bit of an advantage. You don't have to be running a web server that supports CGI to run PHP, as PHP is embedded into each web page and is executed on the loading of the page. PHP has fast access to email and the filesystem so it's a good choice for what you're trying to accomplish.

    However, if you're really new to all this web development, you may want to use one of the many existing scripts out there that have already been written. Here are a few links to help you out depending on what your server will allow (some web servers disallow CGI scripts, and some web servers cannot handle PHP. find out from your admin about yours):

    PHP Form Processors:

    CGI From Processors:
    Perl -- (careful with this one...some claim these scripts are VERY insecure)


    Good luck. PM me if you need any further assistance.
    /* You are not expected to understand this. */

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    whenever i use post forms i do most of my coding in cold fusion jsut cause it is easy and quick... but i think that the best choice is php if you want to take the time to learn it.
    Learn like you are going to live forever, live like you are going to die tomorrow.


  4. #4
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Nov 2002


    thanks for all the info guys .. I was lookin at a few of the cgi scripts out there and actually found a few nice ones.. not sure on the implementing process tho ... think I will start up on my reading with PHP also and check out which one would be easier for me ..

    don't have much time left, need the project completed by the end of this month.

    P.S Roswell i mite just take you up on that offer. greatly appreciated.

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