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What was the rationale behind having a fullname field as opposed to separating out first and last names?

Hi everyone!

Curious as to what the rationale was for having a fullname field as opposed to a first_name and last_name field. After developing a few modules now, I’ve often needed to simply get the first name of a user for personalization. The user’s full name is too formal and the username feels impersonal.

Could someone shed some light?

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Pretty sure Revo had that because Evo did, and Evo did because Etomite (/the modX extra for Etomite) did.

If someone can dig up an actual rationale behind that decision made over a decade ago, they deserve a medal.

As far as names around the world go, a single fullname field is more flexible than a first and last name, but yeah, I do hear you on how often it’s nice to have a separate first name.

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Ha! Thanks Mark, love it!

Would it be bad practise to store the first and last name in the fullname field separated by a delimiter? Or should I make a custom profile table with first and last name columns (along with some other stuff)?

many times the custom table is the way to go. modx doesn’t do a lot of user-related stuff by itself, but does allow for control of multiple user levels.

heck if I am not mistaken it didn’t even log creation date for users a few years ago

If you’re happy with disregarding special cases, you could split the fullname on the space. Dedicated fields (or storing part of it in the extended field) could help make sure people are called by what they prefer to be called.

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Thanks for the info guys. I ended up going the custom table route. Hooray for scalability…