How to: Choose a Data Input Type

Choosing a Data Input Type

Sometimes the data inputs in an interactive Post or Page is no longer fit for purpose. You may find the data is not coming in the right format, or needs further editing to be useful. There is a variety of data input types available in Lane that can be used to prompt the user to enter the data in the right format, as well as advanced features that can help structure the rules around the data being inputted.

Data Input Types

There is a wide range of data input types available in Lane that are defined in the article:

How to: Data Input Types

The type of data input to use depends on how you intend to use the data.

Changing a data input type

To change the data input type, edit the Page or Post and go to the Data tab. Click on the edit (pencil) icon to change the properties of an existing data input. Selecting a new input type will preserve the name of the data field, but will reset all other options to their default values.

In the example below, the Floor field may be better served as a numeric field rather than text:

floor.png

Text Inputs

Text is actually the least rigid form of data input. Whether you are using the Text or Long Text input types, there are few rules you can apply to these fields. Use these types for open ended questions:
Notes.png

Numeric Inputs

When you need a number, there are a variety of options to choose from. Users can enter a number, move a slider, or toggle up and down to choose a value.

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Multiple choice questions can also be converted into numeric values. The text options in Choose one from a list (Radio buttons) or Choose one from a dropdown (selectbox) can be converted into numbers using the Value column: Radio_buttons.png

Date and Time inputs

There is also a variety of options for a user to select a date and time:

Just a date:
Date.png

Just a time:
time.png

Or a Start date (and time) and End date (and time):

date_and_time_range.png

Whatever the situation, you can choose the right format to make it clear and easy for the user. 

Data Validation

If you are getting a lot of typos or improperly formatted entries, you can use some predefined data input fields to ensure the data is inputed correctly at the source.

  • Email address: can be used to ensure a properly formatted email address (username@domain.com).
  • Phone number: can be used to obtain a properly formatted phone number. Only the + symbol and numerals are allowed. Brackets and dashes are not.
  • Website: can be used to obtain a properly formatted website that starts with http:// or https://
  • Yes / No: can be used to obtain a Boolean value (0 for No, 1 for Yes) from a slider that can be toggled.

Required Fields

The Required Field toggle is used to ensure the user enters a value for this input before they can submit. Enable this option for the most important data fields:

Validation.png

Advanced Mode

In Advanced Mode, you can set further validation criteria. For numeric inputs, you can set a minimum and maximum range of allowed values, make sure it includes certain values, or make it conditionally required depending on the value of another field.

For example, if you have a Yes / No data input asking for a user's LinkedIn profile, you can make a Website data input required based on choosing Yes. The Website data input will check that the profile is a properly formatted link:

Data_validation_advanced.png


If you have any questions or need further assistance with data inputs, contact the Help Desk at support@joinlane.com and we will be happy to assist.

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