Formerly known as Butterfly
My side project, formerly known as "Butterfly", is approaching completion of its first beta approach, which is an exciting time. It has been in development in one way or another for some time, so its going to be great to see it finally getting an early release out there and (hopefully) seeing some feedback from real users.
It's in the final stages of getting together some slides to kind of show it off, sorting out a final URL and hopefully putting together a stand alone WAR file that will come bundled with Jetty/HSQL so users can just fire it up and test it out locally in an attempt to lower the barrier to adoption.
In the meantime, here is a bit of a blurb about what its actually all about..
Having worked in Enterprise software, on large scale projects spread across several geographic sites (often across several countries) we have seen and used several disparate, mediocre tooling to support collaboration and communication across the teams (even across teams on the same site), as an example of this, on my latest project engagement we have the following toolset:
- A web application to track defects/bugs
- A web application to manage work tickets (for example, requesting infrastructure team to patch/restart servers etc)
- A web application to manage internal work items/ToDo lists within the team
- An internal wiki
- Email (of course)
- Online chats
This was not unique to this project, but the obvious problem was that with all these disparate channels and mechanisms it made collaboration more difficult than it probably should be. For example, having multiple web apps to manage common tasks meant that most users were never "always on" any one tool, so to raise a ticket/defect/todo it involved opening app, logging in etc. It also meant that knowledge was not easily centralised or searchable (searching for info across several web apps, email, and online chat archives is a pain in the ass) - The project attempts to tackle this inefficiency by building a single, user-centric web application that has these common communication and collaboration tasks at its heart whilst also borrowing metaphors and familiar mechanisms from popular social sites such as live feed "walls" for latest activity. Being user-centric it also means we can effectively capture the team/user relationships across the project.
Oh, and its called "Flutterby" now..
(there will be a more detailed write up shortly on the site once launched.. which is still pending the URL)