Drag and drop in the Reorderer

Michelle D'Souza michelle.dsouza at utoronto.ca
Fri Oct 12 20:46:16 UTC 2007

Hi everyone,

While attempting to upgrade to the 0.9 release of dojo, we discovered  
that dojo's drag and drop in its current incarnation will not work  
for the Reorderer. This is due to limitations in dojo DnD's ability  
to handle certain types of markup - see the trac ticket if you're  
interested: http://trac.dojotoolkit.org/ticket/4650.

Anastasia, Joseph and I spent yesterday and today evaluating other  
drag and drop solutions that we can use in place of dojo's. Here are  
the criteria that we used for selecting a drag and drop solution:

1. No assumptions about DOM structure beyond
	- a known container describing the boundary of the Reorderer
	- identified orderables

2. Allows nested Reorderers

3. Allows arbitrary non-orderable elements and hierarchy

4. Not dependent on scanning for css classes

5. Name-spaced

6. Dojo compatible

Nice to have:

1. Good documentation

We looked at YUI, Ext, Tool-man, Mochikit and JQuery.

- YUI passes all the criteria, has good documentation and examples.  
Actual DOM manipulation requires some hand rolled code. There is a  
very good example that we could use as a starting point.
Ext seems to be the same as YUI but with less documentation and  
- Tool-man only supports very simple cases of drag and drop.
- Mochikit has a bug where it does not work with dojo. There is a  
work around, but it didn't seem to help.
- JQuery interface plugin is dependent on scanning for CSS classes  
and doesn't seem to allow nested Reorderers.
- JQuery EasyDrag and jqDnR plugins only support simple cases of drag  
and drop.
- JQuery UI passes all the criteria, has good documentation and  
examples. Out of the box it seems to work well with the Reorderer.

Based on this, we are going to move forward with using the JQuery UI  
drag and drop for the Reorderer. Please let us know if you have any  
concerns about this.


Michelle D'Souza
Software Developer, Fluid Project
Adaptive Technology Resource Centre
University of Toronto

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