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Collection Sorting Bug

I have a live client site with a resource center and resources are sorted first by featured (yes/no) and then by date published (most recent first). The outcome:

  • 3 featured items, sorted by date
  • 6 non-featured items, sorted by date
  • everything else, sorted by date

This means the newest, non-featured resource my client added is showing up in the 10th spot instead of the 4th spot because it’s in that everything else bucket. This is a live, client site so I don’t feel comfortable sharing a back-end link, even if it’s read only, but it appears to be this 3-year old bug exactly:

Has anyone else experienced this or found a solution that doesn’t involve recreating each post which is a non-starter?

I was able to test/reproduce the issue by toggling ‘Featured’ on and then off on posts and watch them move up from the last grouping into that second grouping that appears after featured items.


Here is the live site : https://www.altr.com/resources

Item 10, “Solution Brief — Enhancing Snowflake with Query-Level Governance”, is not featured and has a publish date of May 12, 2020. The six items above it have older dates and are also not featured.

(I can provide a read-only link to staff if they want to investigate.)

Thanks,
Chat

Took the first test site I ever built on here, the “Business Website Tutorial” and added an “Exec Team” toggle to team members and set the team members to sort first by the toggle and then by name (A-Z). I set the toggle to On for the Partners and Senior Partner and everything sorted fine. Turned the toggle On for an Associate named Tom Linder and everything was still fine. Turned the toggle Off for Tom and… bug reproduced. We now have three groups:

  • 4 exec team members
  • 1 non-exec team members
  • 3 other non-exec team members

Read-only link:
https://preview.webflow.com/preview/business-website-tutorial-4b1dd1?utm_medium=preview_link&utm_source=designer&utm_content=business-website-tutorial-4b1dd1&preview=31dc63bd8a4b65410f263039e8d83473&pageId=5d6d9562b8496ea97199037d&mode=preview

Webflow folks — this is a pretty egregious sort bug that was documented two-and-a-half years ago. What the hell?

I’m author of that original bug post 3 years ago, and yeah, sorting still has a number of catastrophic failures. I’m fairly certain that even basic alphabetic sorting still fails when you have upper and lowercase starting characters in the sorted field.

You’re doing the right thing by announcing the bug, and the Webflow team generally gets onto these as quickly as they can. I think these sorting bugs have fallen through the cracks.

As a workaround for your particular situation, you might try multiple collection lists, adjacent to each other, with the came content and styling. The first one would filter to just the featured items, the second to just the non-featured items, etc.

I’m not 100% certain that will solve your specific problem, but I tend to see sorting bugs most frequently when I’m sorting on multiple criteria, and this would at least cut that problem out.

Most importantly, it does not require any weird or funky practices for the client. Manual sorting is one of the biggest recurring issues I have- client cannot order a list in the way they want, so I have to assign a numeric field and make them integer-sequence the list every time. /facepalm

Separating into two lists does solve the problem. I tested that before posting. The issue is that we designed it as a single list in a grid. When I break them into separate lists, it breaks the grid. It’s most likely how we’re going to have to solve the problem but it’s still not ideal.

Aside: The capitalization / lowercase sorting thing isn’t actually a bug. The behavior matches the default sort (‘ORDER BY’ clause) for SQL and you have to use ‘NOCASE’ to get the sort to ignore case. Ideally there should be a toggle that can effectively issue a ‘NOCASE’ on the sort so that those of us building sites can decide how we want the sorting to work but that would be a feature request.

Yes, the grid problem-
It’s a hack, but here’s what I do when I need Collection List items to flow together-

  1. Place all adjacent collection lists in a DIV
  2. Give each of the Collection List Items the same base class for style, e.g. 30% page width for 3 columns
  3. Add subclasses for list-specific styling, e.g. to make featured items stand out
  4. Use jQuery to unwrap the DIVs from each Collection list individually (2 per collection list)

It’s crude, but then the collection list items can all flow together in one card-style layout.

And yes, on sorting- that makes sense. Ideally, we should be able to configure the locale setting so that sorting, dates, numeric formats, currencies, all work appropriately for the target audience. Webflow doesn’t seem to have this and doesn’t even default to US English locale ( for sorting ).

I’m not certain what the thinking behind that is, but it’s been a recurring problem on my sites which are generally English (US), English (UK), English (AU), Japanese & Chinese. At the moment, I have a normal Name field, and then a “Sortedname” field. Customers have to enter both, with Sortedname all lowercase to make sorting possible.

Split featured into their own collection grid to solve the issue on the live website. Bug can still be seen on the test site.

Does Webflow staff read these bug reports? Do they reply? Just want to know what to expect when reporting verifiable, reproducible bugs because silence was not what I was expecting.

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