New Features and Improvements
August 29, 2014
- Added estimation to table view in tasks
It’s been a while since we last spoke, but that doesn’t mean nothing is going on in the 84kids.
We’ve been getting a lot requests about adding the WebDAV protocol to deploy lately, mostly due to Big Commerce ceasing its support of FTP deployments. We’re happy to tell you that now it’s possible to deploy via WebDAV in Springloops: you only need to provide URL, user name and password to your server.
Click here to read more about BigCommerce switching from FTP: http://blog.bigcommerce.com/switching-from-ftp-to-secure-webdav/#.U_MNPPl_s7c
Here’s the complete changeset for the last release:
We’ve been keeping a low profile for the past couple of weeks, but that’s because we’re onto something… new. It’s still too early to tell you what it is exactly, but it’ll be worth the wait – especially if you’re a developer and need a non-nonsense solution for your professional needs.
Alex and the 84kids
Dear Springloops users,
Last night one of our web servers broke down, which resulted in lack of access to the Springloops UI. The failure was hard to locate, but after a few hours of work we finally managed to fix it.
We are sorry for all trouble it may have caused to your business.
The server has been replaced and new means of monitoring and reporting have already been introduced to prevent similar accidents in the future.
Although the web service was down, the timeout did not affect the Git and SVN services and no data loss has been registered whatsoever.
In the last 2 years Springloops did not register any timeouts except for scheduled maintenances. We’re very sorry that the yesterday’s outage has ended this streak.
We’re aware, however, that the biggest problem might have been lack of communication. We apologize you had to wait so long for the information and will do our best to make sure it never happens again.
The last weeks of 2013 proved very benevolent for Springloops source & deploy: we’ve released a couple of useful additions, including a blame tool and online editor, together with numerous improvements to the whole project management suite.
Finally, the time has come to introduce one of the most requested features of all time. We are both proud and excited to announce that Springloops now supports deployments of submodules and externals.
Every company in the coding business has its own libraries that are the core of a project. Many a time these libraries are the same across all projects. In such case, the best idea is to add dependencies from external modules to a specific project. Such dependencies are called submodules in Git and externals in Subversion. Although the name and way of handling are different, their purpose remains the same: to allow users to contain one repository within another.
With today’s release, these dependencies can be deployed together with the files from the parent repository.
You can define which projects are going to deploy external repos at the left side of the Deployments tab. A submodule/external folder will also
be tagged with an appropriate icon in the Source browser:
All projects created before February 5, 2014, have this option turned off by default, whereas all projects created after that date will have this feature turned on. You can switch it off at any time in case you had problems with the externals (eg. authorization issues.)
Public repositories hosted outside Springloops are now also supported.
Springloops source & deploy will be continually developed alongside BamBam! and the rest of our apps in order to meet the needs of the most demanding web developers around the world. The view of the amazing websites that you make with our tools is just too much of a reward for us to quit.
Today we released two features that will make life of every Springloops user easier.
The first one is an online editor that allows you to edit files directly in the Springloops browser without the need to switch to command line or a third-party editor:
You will find it next to other options in the Source & Deploy: Browse tab right above the currently viewed piece. Clicking Edit will switch the view to full screen, allowing you to work on code in smooth fashion (syntax highlight is also supported.) Once you’re ready with the changes, click Save & Commit to automatically commit them to the repository.
The second feature relates to one of the most common requests we were receiving from both Springloops and BamBam! users: the ability to give access to the payments tab to other users. That’s why we introduced billing liaisons who have special rights to access the Account tab:
The users added to the billing liaison list are entitled to change plans, manage payments and download invoices. The only thing they cannot do in the Account tab is delete the account (only account owners can do that.)
The difference between admins and billing liaisons is that admins are able to add and delete projects but aren’t allowed to manage plans and payments, whereas billing liaisons have access to the account settings but aren’t allowed to manage projects (they can only access those to which they are assigned to.) Both roles can be combined freely, however.
Next thing on the roadmap? Submodules and externals for Springloops. See you in two weeks.
It’s been a long year for 84kids: we finally got a name for our team, inspired by the time we grew up in. We introduced a brand new UI to Springloops and divided it into four separate products, the biggest change to the system since the upgrade to v2.0 in 2009. We moved to a new
Thank you for sticking up with us in 2013. We’re not going to let the momentum die in the year to come. In fact, we aim higher. 2014 will be a blast.
Merry Christmas everybody and all the best in the New Year!
You know the drill: something’s not working and you need to find out why. You find the bug in the code, but don’t know how to fix it. Who you gonna call? The person who coded that piece. Don’t know who did it? Use the Blame tool and trace him!
The main function of the tool is to indicate who and when modified the file so that you can
blame the responsibility on him and drown in guilt in front of everybody use his help to fix the bug quicker and make sure it doesn’t happen again. It’s safe to assume all of us have used either svn blame or git blame at some point of work. Now you can access it directly from Springloops: just click the Blame link at the right side of Source Browser to see which lines have been modified in the currently viewed revision and learn who is the author and when the changes were made.
It’s the first one in the series of online tools that will improve work on repositories. The next in line is Online Editing, to be released soon.
If there’s somethin’ strange…
In your repo code…
Who you gonna call?
A few weeks ago we received an email from one of our users. Here’s what he had to say:
Every time I open up Springloops, it takes me a good two to three seconds to get my bearings.
Every time. And it always feels like there’s an extra step to get where I needed, like everything useful is one level too deep.
Anyway, keep it up you still have a great product.
Unfortunately, it appeared that Vincent wasn’t the only one having a hard time getting his bearings: we were receiving similar emails from other users rather regularly. We decided to perform an audit and investigate this matter closely. It appeared that the reason behind people getting lost like hobbits in the mines of Moria was lack of clear division between Global and Project view, which were very similar.
There are two main views in the system: Global and Project.
The first one, also known as Dashboard, is what you see immediately after logging into the system: the overview of all your projects. In order to make the view it more distinctive, we bulked all tabs from the main navigation bar in the Global View (i.e. All tasks, All wikis, etc.) into one drop down menu. This is how it looks now:
Grouping the “All” views under one menu allowed us to better expose features important for account management: Workflows, Permissions, Groups & People and Account settings. They are now easily accessible at the right (note that some users may not have access to some of them due to permission settings):
Clicking on a project brings up the Project View. This is where you work on tasks in BamBam!, browse source in Springloops, analyse time tracking reports in Chime and edit documents in Anchor. You can see which project you are currently in by the name at the top left corner under the colored line. Note that you can switch to the Global View at any time by clicking the link above. At the right side you can find Project Options with settings applicable to that project only.
We hope the changes introduced will improve the UX of the service and make the navigation easier. Once again, thank you for all feedback that you share with us. We want to develop the best online collaboration tool platform out there and, thanks to your suggestions, opinions and unbiased criticism, with each release we’re getting closer to our target.
Recently we’ve launched new Twitter accounts for BamBam! project management and Chime time tracking:
The good ol’ Springloops account is still up and running at twitter.com/springloops
You can now choose what information you want to receive by following one of the accounts (or more) above – we are not going to tweet about BamBam! on the Springloops channel anymore and vice-versa.
There’s also the LinkedIn profile of 84kids for all stuff professional @ linkedin.com/company/springloops
And if you’re more into casual side of 84kids and don’t mind posting a lolcat from time to time you can always catch us on Facebook @ facebook.com/84kids
The blog will remain a central hub for all information combined with special emphasis on updates and changelogs.
Don’t be a stranger and tweet us some time!
If you think of the May release as v3 upgrade, then the September upgrade is like a v3.1 patch. It is our final touch to the 18 months of redesign which resulted in Springloops getting younger brothers: BamBam! (tasks), Chime (time tracking), Anchor (wiki) and Turbine (notes, still in beta).
If we were to describe the changes in one word, it would be usability. We collected all feedback we’ve received from you since the redesign in May, analyzed it and introduced tons of UI improvements all around the system. It looks better, works better and certainly feels better to work with.
Here’s the list of the most important things introduced:
BamBam!’s here and needs your help!
With redesign finished, we are now officially ready to release BamBam! to the world at www.dobambam.com.
Check out the website and share it with your friends, readers and followers to help the little fella get the recognition he deserves! The more people learn about him, the faster we’ll be able to deliver new exciting features – like the mobile version, which is now our priority.
Along with BamBam! goes Chime, a free time tracking tool that’ll help you evaluate the real costs behind your work. Meet him here: www.getchime.com
Last but not least, we’ve updated the landing page for Springloops at www.springloops.io. Hope you’ll like the new looks!
We’d like to thank you for your support and invaluable feedback during the last months. We can assure you that you’ll hear about us here and there in the weeks to come.