Constraint message disappears too quickly

Hi there,
I have set validation criteria for a numbers field (minimum/maximum value limit) combined with a constraint/error message and it works fine when collecting data with KoBoCollect. I am wondering whether it is possible to adjust and extend the time the error message is showing as it disappears very quickly? I have users that are fairly new to smartphones and apps and it would be great for them to properly read the error message.
Best, Frieda

Hey @Frieda you got that correct! At the moment the Collect android app displays the constraint message for a very short duration while the same gets displayed in the Enketo until the user corrects it. Maybe @Xiphware could add to this more clearly if it is possible to display the constraint message like it displays in Enketo.

Please let me know @Xiphware if i should create a GitHub issue for this (if you think it’s possible/necessary). TIA!

Thanks @Kal_Lam for the quick response and clarification for the Enketo part!

I am curious whether @Xiphware knows about a workaround for the Collect app.

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AFAIK the only configuration options you have around constraint checking is when its performed: immediately vs upon finalization. But not how long the popup is displayed for, alas.

There’s nothing technically preventing popups to remain visible, require explicit user interaction to dismiss, stay on-screen longer via user-config setting, etc but that would require a new feature request against ODK Collect. Feel free to submit a request here and see what sort of traction you get.

[or if you are developmentally-inclined, you can always fork KoboCollect and change the duration yourself in code]


Thanks @Xiphware for clarifying further!


Hello @Frieda,
it might be helpful to tell the enumerators that the message will re-appear when they push the NEXT button or try to swipe again. (If the setting is check immediately.)

Other workarounds,esp. if you have a long complex constraint message, might be to add

  • a guidance_hint to the question with the relevant message (and activate guidance_hint in form settings)
  • a related hint to the question
  • a note or acknowledge type below with the (same) message as label (filtered by relevant, grouped with field-list appearance required = true).

Best regards

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Thanks @wroos, in the end we went for a related hint like you suggested too and shortened the constraint message.
Good idea with an additional label below, could be a back-up solution in case the enumerators are still confused…
Best regards

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