Is Flutter a CCK for WordPress?

Following a thread through some blog posts this morning – I started at The Reverend’s post about Martha’s documentation of her hacking on WPMU, including a description of a WordPress plugin I hadn’t heard of before – Flutter.

Damn. The Rev’s gonna love this.

One of the things I LOVE about Drupal is the fantastic CCK plugin that lets me create compound structured content types without hacking the database or writing code. Things like Events. Profiles. Pretty much anything that can be stored as database records.

Flutter appears to do most of what I use CCK for. It’s a bit of a hack on top of WordPress’s custom fields design, but whatever. I really don’t care how it works under the hood. It works. And it’s really nice. You can create any number of custom content types, groups that can contain any number of fields – and the fields can be simple text strings, long text chunks, images, audio, dates… Very cool.

So far, the only thing I’ve found really missing from what I use in CCK is the idea of linking nodes (or posts or pages – I haven’t seen a way to select a page or post as a field in another – but that’s not fatal – tags and categories can make up for some of that).

I’ll be playing with Flutter over the next few weeks. I think this might go a LONG way to implementing some of the things I’ve been thinking about wrt WordPress as a course blogging and publishing platform – WITHOUT HAVING TO WRITE CODE.

I love that. Thanks to Martha and Jim for the heads up on Flutter!

Update: doh. Looks like Flutter does some unpleasant things to the main Write Post interface as well – it was wrapping this post to a set width, making it look ickyier than usual. hrm…

yeah. definitely not quite ready for prime time. but still, something worth keeping a close eye on. this could really make some interesting things possible with wordpress…

Update 2: the evil russian spammers seem to REALLY like this post, so I’ve closed comments. Sorry. stupid russian spammers…

11 thoughts on “Is Flutter a CCK for WordPress?”

  1. My memory is fuzzy, but I thought I recall from WordCamp last August that there would be more structured (or less hacky) support for custom fields in the next? upcoming? version?

    Or maybe I am dreaming it up. Custom fields are the magic keys to making WordPress sing and dance like a circus bear.

  2. so- is this the answer for making boolean search finally work in WP? The feature I’ve been waiting for, for so long, that I almost forgot about it?
    Have to dig in on this- thanks for the heads up D’Arcy.

  3. Interesting. I had the same thought when I found Flutter — that it might be the custom content tool for WP that CCK is for Drupal. But, not being a Drupal expert (by any stretch of the imagination), I wasn’t sure if I was missing something.

    I do think custom fields, in general, have tremendous possibilities, and I like that Flutter puts a nicer interface (and more options) into using them.

    I haven’t seen the problem you mentioned in your update — did the formatting of the post itself get messed up? I’ll keep an eye out for this.

    The other feature of Flutter that I haven’t played with yet is the custom modules and layouts. From what I can tell, though, they’re based on the Canvas templating platform for WP, and I think development on that has stopped.

  4. Oh — and just as a clarification. I’m not doing any WPMU hacking. I’m just mucking around in a single WP install. I leave the heavy lifting to the Rev. I’m just a postulant. 🙂

  5. Me, I’m just a lawnmower. (Name that tune, fellow geezers.)

    This is great info and I’d say it sends my heart a-flutter but that would be very, very poor humor indeed. Really looking forward to seeing how all of this experimenting goes.

    1. Gus, I hadn’t heard of Pods before, but they sound great! And the project appears to be active, which is a plus. I’ll be checking Pods out ASAP! Thanks for the tip!

  6. Thanks Gus- this is exactly what I’ve been looking for since I asked D’Arcy about a way to do Boolean search on WP years ago-
    A few sites we manage will be much improved thanks to Pods.

  7. I’ve tried all of these, and my favourite so far is More Fields. It is lightweight and elegant, not trying to do everything under the sun.

    More fields doesn’t even add an extra databasea table it just uses the existing custom fields and site meta data. smooth.

    I know pods allows you to add a field that references another custom field/page/post. pretty cool. however pods adds about 10 extra tables to your database. I want to use this with wpmu, so that is just too much overhead.

    I really with flutter would improve their documentation, otherwise it’s not too bad. and right now it seems to be getting the most publicity.

    this post lists a few more,

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