Open Source Data Collection
Published at 2021-12-07

A Brief Introduction for a Solid Start

We're officially in business! Let me introduce FormPress, a fresh company that's been in development for the past year, ready to offer its services of form-building and data collection/storage with FormPress app: our open-source software program.

In this article, I'll try to shed light on several concepts about form-building, FormPress, and some features of FormPress app.

First, though, let's take a look at the place of online forms and form builders in the wide spectrum of digital marketplaces.


Online forms are literally everywhere in the digital realm, and they have to be.

Regardless of specialty, if you're running a business, or surveying, or carrying out studies, as long as you have a certain audience, you have to be in contact with them constantly, collect information, get feedback, and make proper adjustments on what you do.

One very practical method for that is to make forms, send them to your audience, collect responses, and save them for later analyses, regularly.

Here, we face a problem: how do you exactly manage that?

This is where a form-builder comes into play to help you out: a software program, ideally with a good team behind it, advancing you through processes like preparation of forms, distribution, data collection and storage, all on a regular basis.

The need for sophisticated form-builders has risen dramatically, especially with the explosion of the digital realm where thousands of enterprises and millions of customers have to communicate constantly. Thus, a similar growth has taken place in the form-builder businesses.

Here, to be preferred amongst alternatives, a given form-builder needs to offer a variety of high-quality features that can establish and maintain the best possible experience for users.

Functionality, ease of use, support, and safety are amongst the essential characteristics of a good form-builder.

That's one of our main goals as FormPress. But, we know it's easier said than done.

FormPress aims to provide you with lots of useful features, but it's not ideal to just leave here a couple of vague sentences about them.

I also don't want to make any of this overwhelming for those not much familiar with these concepts. So, let's briefly talk about some features of FormPress app, and why they're important.


Lightweight, Ultra-Fast

Source

FormPress app is designed to be as smooth as possible. We don't like load time that's turtle-speed. I'm sure you don't either.

FormPress forms are as soft as feathers. The pages load with kbs only.

This is a very important feature, and we aim to keep it, even as we improve our builder to handle more.

On a page, why load anything more than you absolutely have to?


Open-Source

Source

This is much more than a feature. One of the distinctive characteristics of FormPress is that it's open-source, meaning that everything, any code running in the background of FormPress app, is at your reach.

On our homepage, there is a link to our Gitlab repository. There, you'll find 'Form Builder and stuff :)' with all the source code available.

Now, a whole new article can be written just about open-source, but this is no time or place to do that, not yet anyway. However, we will briefly go over a couple of benefits to help you have a better understanding.


a) Trust

Well, if you're going to work with a company for any service, you should make sure that the service is legit and there isn't anything evil going on behind the curtain.

In our case, you'll be using a software tool to create forms, share them, collect information, and save it, on a regular basis. So, the question begs to be asked: how do you know this tool is safe?

Obviously, there are many ways, depending on a variety of factors, to seek proper answers to this question, but one technical method is to conduct a security check on the source code of the software program.

That's not really possible with any program though, right? Exactly. It is possible to security audit the source code of a software program, only if the code is accessible.

In fact, that's one of the reasons why our app is open-source. We don't just want to say that we're genuine, we want to show it. We want you to have the opportunity to see it for yourself.


b) Your Builder, Your Data, Literally

This is another reason why FormPress app is open-source: so you can install it on your own cloud, thus have your own database, and literally own your data.

This way, all the data you collect will be stored in the database of your FormPress app.

Isn't that awesome?


c) Collaboration

Another advantage of open-source code is the opportunity for external contribution.

If you're a developer, and interested in FormPress, you can find many ways to collaborate with us.

It could be about an innovative idea of yours, or a bug we missed, or, I don't know, any productive way of collaboration.

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Support

This is something we aim to be known for.

Now, since we're still a small team, I won't exaggerate our current capabilities to offer top-notch support to a large audience.

Bearing in mind this limitation, however, we are preparing our private support to be available as soon as it starts to be demanded, for as many customers as we can possibly provide it with.

We offer support in all our plans. The mentioned private support differs in that it will be a scheduled video call support. It will be available in the plans "Gold" and "Enterprise"; and roughly speaking, it will involve guidance through FormPress basics such as getting the hang of FormPress app and its elements, preparation and publication of forms, examination of responses, etc.

We are determined to make our general support a prominent feature of FormPress.


Drag & Drop Interface

The interface of FormPress app is basically "WYSIWYG".

Preparing the interface, one of our main aims was to promote ease of use and straightforwardness so users can be comfortable with the app.

While building a form, for example, you can simply pick an element from the left-hand side, drag it to the right, and drop it into the form. With the same mechanic, you can also change the order of elements inside the form.

Even as we improve our app with a variety of features, we will pay attention to keeping a certain level of simplicity.


Upcoming Features

Well, please keep in mind that FormPress app is in beta.

However, we'll be working on various features to add to our app, and some of them are of high priority to be added in the near future. These are mainly templates and integrations.