Sunday, January 31, 2010

Wanted: Brave souls for an experiment

I am in need of some brave souls who are willing to be part of a small experiment. I suspect most readers of this blog will meet the simple criteria I have for participants which is why I posted here.

The purpose of this experiment is to get an idea of what your work on the computer is like, in terms of context switches and away time. This will be represented in a simple graphical way which you may find useful even after the experiment. You can see an example at the bottom of this post.

All I would require from you is to let the application run in the background and send me a screenshot of the state of the application when you are done your work day. You can do this as often as you like but at least once at the end of your day is requested.

If you are interested, please email me and include:

  • Your primary job function (web developer, technical documentation, etc)
  • Your operating system
  • Whether you currently use JIRA or another project management tool

I look forward to hearing from you!

New release (1.0.1276)

A new release is available:

This release brings a couple of major bug fixes as well as some minor new features. The rest of this post discusses one of the new features. Your life may be made more complete by reading it.

JIRA's standard workflow is a little something like:

  1. Enter issue
  2. Assign to user
  3. User starts progress
  4. User tracks time against issue
  5. User resolves issue (progress implicitly stopped)
  6. Issue is verified and closed

If you're anything like me, you probably forget to do steps 3 and 4 regularly. Worklog Assistant helps you track your time in JIRA by being an interface you can go to to accomplish 80-90% of the work you need to do with your JIRA tickets. Indeed, if all it did was let you log your time worked, it probably would not be very helpful. Some of the things you can do from the Worklog Assistant interface:

  • Issue filtering and free text search
  • Workflow transitions (stop progress, resolve issue, etc)
  • Commenting on issues
  • Issue operations (edit, move, etc)

Typically, when you start tracking time against an issue, you are starting progress on the issue. However, JIRA has no mechanism that I know of (besides writing a server-side plugin) to perform the "Start Progress" transition when you log work.

So now, Worklog Assistant will helpfully execute the "Start Progress" transition the first time you log work against an issue. This means you never have to remember steps 3 and 4 again! One less thing to remember makes for happy people and happy people can only be good for your project.

With that, I bid you good day and hope this coming week sees you make a lot of progress!

Now, if only Worklog Assistant could do my work for me...

Sunday, January 3, 2010

New release (1.0.1135)

The first release of the new year is available:
This release includes some bug fixes and a new feature. See the release notes for details on the bug fixes.

Some users and myself noticed that a lot of the time, as soon as we turn off a timer, we published the worklogs to JIRA right away. So my workflow would be a lot like:
  • Start timer
  • Do some work
  • Stop timer
  • Command-P for publish (or CTRL-P on Windows/Linux)
Now you can click the "Automatically submit worklogs" option in the redesigned configuration window as shown below:

Whenever a worklog is added to the pending worklogs, it is automatically submitted. Any errors that occur are reported to you otherwise you can continue on your work. This is a good way to ensure that you don't forget to submit your worklogs to JIRA. As it turns out, this is a common occurrence. Hopefully this lets you work with a bit more security on that end of things.

Well, that's all for now! Have a good week and happy time tracking :)

About this blog

We strongly believe that tracking your time properly is the first step to deterministic software development. If you feel that you have been guessing or you can't be bothered to remember to log time, Worklog Assistant might be for you!

Give it a try!

Please download a free 30-day trial today by clicking on the link below: Download