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Mapping Biases to Testing: Confirmation Bias

Xebia Blog - Mon, 08/08/2016 - 21:24
I use terminology from earlier blog posts about biases. If you have missed those posts, read part 1 here. I explain the terminology there. In the second post I wrote about the Anchoring Effect. Let me state the ‘bad news’ up front: you cannot fully avoid the confirmation bias. That’s actually a good thing, because
Categories: Companies

Agile 2016: The Lean Buffet

NetObjectives - Fri, 08/05/2016 - 15:28
The Agile Alliance's yearly US conference is a useful barometer of where many people in the Agile community are — the problems they face, the solutions they've tried, the experiences they wish to share. This year, I was paying especially careful attention to where Lean fit into the picture. The verdict: It's there, but not nearly as much as it could be. Many of the talks I attended had a nibble...

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Categories: Companies

Agile Aus – Robot Ethics

Growing Agile - Fri, 08/05/2016 - 14:57
Robot Ethics and the Future of Human-Robot Interaction Kate Darling Kate’s talk at Agile Australia was an interesting one, and although not about agile, she raised some things about robot ethics that I had never really even considered before. Like: is it okay for a cute robot to tell your kids they should buy certain […]
Categories: Companies

Targetprocess v.3.9.1: Share views with specific users, a Recent group for the Assignments list

TargetProcess - Edge of Chaos Blog - Fri, 08/05/2016 - 10:14
Share views with specific people

You can now share views and groups with specific individual users. This means that you'll no longer have to create a team in order to make views visible for specific people. Just select 'Custom sharing' in a view's Access tab and choose users who will have access to your view/group.


Added a 'Recent' group to the list of assignable users

Currently, when you open a list of users to assign somebody to an item, users are grouped by role. We've now added an additional 'Recent' group that contains users who you recently assigned to work items. Please note: This 'recent' list will only be shown if the entire list of assignable users contains more than 6 people.


Added the ability to filter cards by the date of the last state change

Do you want to filter your cards by the date of their last state change? You can now use the LastStateChangeDate field for filtering and visual encoding. For example: Let's say you want to see bugs or user stories which have been stuck in the 'In Dev' state for more than 2 weeks. Just use ?LastStateChangeDate < Today - 14(days) and EntityState.Name == 'In Dev' FilterByDate

Add specific views from the +Create menu

From now on, you can create a Board, List, Timeline, or Details view directly from the +Create menu. You don't need to create a board first and switch to another view mode afterwards. For example, if you want to create a list, just click on 'List' from the +Create menu. You can then proceed with the setup of the newly created list by clicking the Setup button on a blank template or on one of the predefined templates. All templates are filtered by whatever view mode is currently active.

  • Added an 'Assign to me' action to the List view
  • Renamed Project Team to Project Members in the `Notify by email` section of comment boxes
Fixed Bugs:
  • Fixed the Quick Add button in the Release view and Notes tab
  • Fixed the incorrect display of state and terms when a team is assigned to an inactive project in the default process
  • Fixed the 'Create bug' button's visibility in the Test Case Run view when Bug Tracking practice is off
  • Fixed an error that occured when opening Entity view after editing Allocations
  • Fixed TP2 page appearing when saving changes in the Settings->Team form
  • Fixed incorrect display of an Attachment's name if it was downloaded with extended unicode symbols
  • Fixed an error that occured when copying an entity that was attached to an Inbox message
  • Fixed display of a comment's creation time when hovering the mouse cursor over it
Categories: Companies

Youth in Agile Series, Part 1: Higher Education vs. the Real World

BigVisible Solutions :: An Agile Company - Thu, 08/04/2016 - 18:00

Youth in Agile is a new blog series sponsored by SolutionsIQ that gives young Agilists a voice in a world that is constantly changing and asking increasingly more of them. The contributors to this series are college-aged individuals who are part of the SolutionsIQ community — interns, participants of a certification course, family to SolutionsIQ’s core community. As Agile becomes more and more mainstream, it’s imperative that we begin listening to the next generation of Agilists who have hopefully learned from us and our mistakes and can continue down the path of growth in the work place that this generation and previous ones have carefully laid out.

This blog was written by Conner Mattingly, a Computer Science major at Washington State University in Pullman, WA.


Higher Learning vs. the Real World


Conner Mattingly
The real world. That’s what I hear college kids say when they are referring to life outside of school. A life that involves a career and more responsibility as they move out on their own. I would hear this “real world” phrase a lot and it was always kind of funny and lighthearted, but this summer when I began an internship at SolutionsIQ the phrase gained a bit more weight for me. Since starting my internship, I have had the opportunity to experience the professional world a little every day. Now I have an increased understanding that college is, in a lot of ways, very different from the “real world”, or at least in this case, the professional world.

Learning in College

In college, the work is more spread out. Instead of dedicating 40 or so hours a week to being as productive as possible at work, in school you’re expected to do as much work as is required to get the task done. The “products” that you deliver in college are much smaller than you might have to deliver at a job as well. However, school deadlines are much closer together. If you’re a developer, these environmental differences can lead to very different styles of programming, including acquiring bad habits. In my experience, college code is slapped together without much emphasis on the overall structure of the software. An analogy is that of constructing a house and then punching holes in the walls so you can get pipes and electrical wires to where they need to go — an ugly sight. The wires get tangled, the pipes leak, and half of the pipes and wires lead into rooms where they aren’t needed. The house is a mess but somehow the sinks work and you have overhead lighting. That’s what the majority of code in college is like. Lack of experience is definitely largely to blame for this but I feel that professors in most classes don’t place emphasis where it should be. Especially since college is meant to prepare you for the “real world” — or at least that’s what I thought.

Even after a short exposure to working in a software development environment, it seems to me that my Computer Science department is definitely behind the professional world. There are only a few tracks you can take and yet in the professional world there is a vast variety of disciplines to pursue that are all beneath the umbrella of Software Development. However, I have seen the start of a shift in college in how programming classes are made available. This year I was told that in fall semester of 2016, the college that I’m attending, the Voiland College of Engineering and Architecture, is offering a Software Engineering degree in addition to the Computer Science degree. This is huge. Computer Science at my school seems to emphasize — well, the science of computers so much that I feel like we’re only learning about the lowest level languages. I’m am not angry about any of the knowledge that I have gained because it is knowledge after all. But I am very excited about the Software Engineering program; it’s a step in the right direction to help students prepare themselves for a career in software development. I just hope they keep moving in the right direction.

Interning the “Real World”

I think the main disconnect between my school experience and my interning experience is the topics and skills that are emphasized. In actual software development, as I said, you have to think about the structure of the code. Since code bases are so large, if you don’t structure your code well, you could end up writing such tangled code that you never get the project done. This can cost companies millions of dollars, which means you could even lose your job. In college it just results in a bad grade. That’s probably part of the reason not much emphasis is put on code structure. But even if it’s not costing a customer money, focusing on the overall structure of the code will make any developer’s life easier and result in a better product. Since code quality and organization is hugely important in professional development, there are processes that exist to aid developers in their coding endeavors. One of these methods is Agile, which I have learned a lot about while at SolutionsIQ.

Agile is a way to develop software that lets teams create products fast and efficiently. Paired with Lean and Extreme Programming practices, the path of product development becomes clearer with every step taken toward the end goal. Software development, by nature, is very flexible and adaptive. Therefore the flexible nature of Agile principles lead to a perfect coupling of process and execution. Seeing Agile and other practices used in unison this summer blew me away. When the programmers stayed true to their principles, like collaboration and rapid feedback, development was simple and clean. I learned about test-driven development (TDD), refactoring, pair programming and so much more. It was amazing to watch. Yet this beautiful way of developing a product was covered for less than an hour one day in one of my classes this last year. That doesn’t make sense since it seems like Agile development and management leads to better production. I only have one more year of classes left and I am uncertain if I’ll hear any more of Agile while attending them, but I hope I do.

Agile is a way to develop software that lets teams create products fast and efficiently.
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The greatest thing about my internship has been my hands-on experience pairing with James Rosko. James is a very experienced and methodical software engineer who seems to write code with the same ease that others might draw a simple flowchart. Seeing him at work was an experience all in itself. While we were pairing, we developed the foundation for the MVC app we were planning to create. We set up the server, the database and a template for the client. What made the biggest impact on me during this process, which is quite common in development, was how James would work through any given problem. I don’t think I’ve seen anyone who could slow down and break problems down into their individual components as effectively as he did. His ability to make a problem smaller is a skill I hope to possess one day. The importance of this kind of skill is, in my opinion, one of the most important to have as a developer. Yet in school these skills are not always focused on, perhaps because of the environment. This is disappointing to me because I think that skills like these are far more important than some of the things that I have learned in school, even outside of software development. Not only do they allow for more effective problem solving, but these skills allow for an increase in learning efficiency. There are so many valuable skills that are required for, or are at least useful for, the “real world” that college, in my experience, doesn’t develop. Therefore, I think it would be beneficial for young people just starting their development careers to have access to some sort of long-term internship program where they could get the experience needed to develop professional-grade software.

In conclusion, I’m happy with the opportunity I’ve had to learn so much about software development and working in teams from professionals like James and others at SolutionsIQ. It has really changed my perspective on the “real world”. I enjoy my school work as well, but I hope that in the future there will be more programs dedicated to helping beginners like me cultivate the skills and acquire the knowledge needed to succeed in the world today.


For another young perspective of Agile, read the second blog in this series.


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The post Youth in Agile Series, Part 1: Higher Education vs. the Real World appeared first on SolutionsIQ.

Categories: Companies

Five ways to makes your dreams come true using unexpected tools

Kanbanery - Wed, 08/03/2016 - 16:35

Artykuł Five ways to makes your dreams come true using unexpected tools pochodzi z serwisu Kanbanery.

Here’s a way to achieve your life goals, track your progress, set milestones, and stay motivated! As you probably know, personal development is a continuous process that is very hard to measure. To monitor if you’re staying on track and raise your motivation you can use agile tools like an online kanban board. Harness the same solutions that work for top businesses to achieve your personal goals.

An online kanban board (like Kanbanery) can be used for just about anything, from tracking your latest initiative to creating a learning schedule, recording goals, and brainstorming ideas. Get inspired by these five personal development kanban boards.

1. Learn a new language

Have you ever signed up for an online course or started learning a new language, and then just forgot about it? Learning new things requires not only self-discipline but also good organizational skills. If you skip classes once, you risk of making a habit of skipping classes. Use a kanban tool to create your action plan. For example, learn Spanish in 100 days. On your online kanban board you can plan your activities and monitor your learning process.

How to do it?

For instance, each class that you take online (via Coursera, Udemy, Treehouse, whatever) is a project, while each lecture is a task. To have a clear action plan you can use the task description field to make notes about the lecture, or attach your lecture notes as file attachments. An online kanban board helps you work toward completing a class entirely instead of dropping out in the second week. It is a simple, visual way to coordinate and start scheduling your lessons.

If someone you know has similar resolutions or interests as you, you can set up a shared board. In this way you can motivate each other and share your experience and knowledge. You can also make your board public and share the URL with friends, which will make you more motivated to keep progressing toward your goals.

learing language

2. Read more

Whether you’re heading off to a beach vacation or hoping to make the most of quieter work weeks, you want to catch up on your reading. Sometimes you have no idea what to read. How many times has someone told you about a great book but you haven’t written down the title and then you forgot it? Or maybe you read something crucial for your work but when you want to look it up again, you don’t remember where you found it? If any of these situations sounds familiar to you, it’s time to change your reading habits and consider using a project management app.

How to do it?

It is very easy. Just create a simple project board “Reading”. It allows you to keep all of your books on one list. In this way you can easily come back to every book title without cudgeling your brain.To have a clear picture of your reading progress, you can name your columns To read one day, To read soon, Reading, and Read. In this way you will see your reading flow. By using different labels you can mark book categories like hobby, travel, work, self-development, etc. You can also invite your friends to view your reading list, and even let them add their book suggestions.

An online kanban tool like Kanbanery allows you to create similar lists for movies, travels or whatever comes to your mind

Categories: Companies

Agile Amped Rocked Agile2016 to Bring You the Greatest Hits of the Conference!

BigVisible Solutions :: An Agile Company - Tue, 08/02/2016 - 18:00

Barry, Josh and Roxi Being Silly at Agile2016A week ago today we were deep into the biggest Agile conference of the year: Agile2016 in Atlanta, GA! Now that it’s over and done, the magic keeps living on in Agile Amped podcasts featuring some of our favorite Agilists and others we were excited to meet for the first time. Bringing new and relevant stories to the industry is our goal with these podcasts, and we hope you enjoy viewing them as much as we enjoy making them for you! Just look at us having fun with our partners ICAgile!

This year’s conference was special for us because we partnered with our friends at Sococo and DZone for the first time to put a new spin on familiar Agile topics like distributed teams, collaboration and communication, technical excellence and leadership. As you watch our podcasts from this event, you may see Mandy Ross, Director of Marketing at Sococo, and John Esposito, Editor-in-Chief of DZone. Both brought a fresh voice and perspective to Agile Amped. We’re so excited to have worked with them and look forward to doing more in the future.

Without further ado, here are the greatest hits of Agile Amped from Agile2016 in Atlanta!

What’s your favorite podcast? What would you like to hear and learn more about? Let us know in the comments! And, as always, don’t forget to subscribe below!


The post Agile Amped Rocked Agile2016 to Bring You the Greatest Hits of the Conference! appeared first on SolutionsIQ.

Categories: Companies

Targetprocess mobile for Android: Release 1.6

TargetProcess - Edge of Chaos Blog - Tue, 08/02/2016 - 09:16
List of notifications inside the application

Previously, you could get push notifications sent to your device but couldn't view a list of them inside the application. We've now put all notifications into one place, so they will be much easier to find.

You can find notifications for:

  • state changes for entities assigned to you
  • new or updated comments where you were mentioned
  • when you are assigned or unassigned to an item


Real Time View Updates

Another helpful improvement we've implemented is live updates. If someone changes an item that is displayed on your board, you will see this immediately without needing to refresh the board.

Other Improvements
  • Added description autosave so that you can recover any recently closed description drafts, even if you didn't click the "save" button
  • Added version number to the application so you can see which mobile release you're currently working with

If you have any suggestions or feedback for us, feel free to shoot us a message at

Click here to download the Android app.

Categories: Companies

Seven Reasons why Darth Vader is a Terrible Product Manager

Xebia Blog - Sat, 07/30/2016 - 18:35
It’s not that I have run out of Samurai parallels but I ran into this blog called: “Darth Vader - The Best Project Manager in the Galaxy” and since it’s my sincere belief that this sword wielding (see there is a samurai parallel!) manager actually displays some pretty terrible Product Management Skills: Here are 7
Categories: Companies

The ‘Game’ of Agile Compared to Football: Training Camp & Preseason

Agile Management Blog - VersionOne - Thu, 07/28/2016 - 14:30

More than 30 years ago Hirotaka Takeuchi and Ikujiro Nonaka wrote an article titled ‘The New New Product Development Game,’ which compares product development to rugby. This year’s NFL draft inspired me to make a similar analogy to American football. … Continue reading →

The post The ‘Game’ of Agile Compared to Football: Training Camp & Preseason appeared first on The Agile Management Blog.

Categories: Companies

How to Rescue Yourself From a Risky Setback

Pivotal Tracker Blog - Wed, 07/27/2016 - 16:52

Did you ever take a risk and then realize, “OMG, I am in too deep?”

But by the time you realized it, it was too late.

There was no time for a do-over.

You were stuck and really the only logical thing to do next was to throw in the towel and call it quits.

Or was it?

Well, in today’s episode of FemgineerTV, we’re going to tackle the topic of how you can rescue yourself from a risky setback.

And to help us out, I’ve invited Jessica Mah, the CEO and Co-Founder of InDinero. She has grown InDinero from zero to multimillion dollar revenues with nearly 200 full-time staff, and has been on the cover of Inc. Magazine, and featured in the Forbes and Inc. 30 Under 30 lists. Jessica studied computer science at UC Berkeley.

Jessica went from engineering to entrepreneurship right out of college, but it hasn’t exactly been a bed of roses for her.

She’s had to overcome a number of setbacks along the way, including being on the brink of bankruptcy!

She’s been kind enough to share her story openly with us, and as you watch the episode you’ll learn:

    • Why it’s important to set goals (but not too many!)
    • How to respond to those
    • Why being direct with teammates and customers can help you work through a risky setback
    • How partners can be helpful, and how to nurture those relationships to withstand setbacks
    • How you can feel fearless and confident, but how it’s like a gas tank and needs to be replenished

If you’ve agonized over a significant setback, then I highly recommend watching this episode!

Listen to the episode on iTunes!

You can listen to this episode of FemgineerTV on iTunes. Please take a moment to leave us a review. Your positive review will help us get featured in News & Noteworthy and bring more exposure to the work we’re doing, as well as the talented guests we feature!

FemgineerTV is produced as a partnership between Femgineer and Pivotal Tracker. San Francisco video production by StartMotionMEDIA.

The post How to Rescue Yourself From a Risky Setback appeared first on Pivotal Tracker.

Categories: Companies

Comment Links

Pivotal Tracker Blog - Wed, 07/06/2016 - 23:59

Tracker’s notifications let you stay on top of story conversations as they evolve, whether you’re in the app or in your email inbox.

Now when you click a comment or mention notification, Tracker highlights and takes you directly to that comment.

We’ve also added the ability to grab links right from the comments. You can paste them into your favorite app like Slack so others can go directly to that comment.

Comment Link

We’ve also made it easier to open a story in a new tab. Just CMD-click a story or the arrow button in an expanded story (or the story preview hover).

Got feedback? Please get in touch via the Provide Feedback widget under Help in any project, contact us on Twitter, or email

The post Comment Links appeared first on Pivotal Tracker.

Categories: Companies

Tracker and Cross-Functional Teams: Where Do You Fit In?

Pivotal Tracker Blog - Tue, 07/05/2016 - 19:00

It takes a village to deliver a great software project. Tracker’s workflow accommodates a developer’s perspective well, but there can be many actors involved in delivering a feature. You’ll use Tracker differently and get different benefits depending on your role and competencies. For example, if you’re a UX designer or a business analyst, where do your activities fit in Tracker? You might have multiple roles and competencies; for example, maybe you’re a developer who also does design and/or testing. Let’s look at how you can use Tracker to keep your work visible and coordinate a variety of activities on a cross-functional team that’s collaborating to build a quality product.

Product owners and managers
If you serve as product owner, product manager, or you’re a line manager for your team, here are some features you can take advantage of to help you plan and prioritize.

Managing multiple projects and dependencies
Need to keep up with more than one project? Create your own workspaces so that you can check progress on several projects at a glance, make dependencies and blockages visible, and easily move stories between projects as needed.

My Work search to see individuals’ active stories
You can see what stories a particular project member has in progress by using the mywork search in combination with the member’s username or initials. This works across projects in workspaces, as well as in individual projects. For example, for the project member with username “chewbacca” and initials CB, type mywork:chewbacca or mywork:cb in the Search field. Some teams pin a My Work panel for each user and display it on a big monitor so they can see if anyone might need help with a time-consuming story.

My Work search across projects in a workspace

Epics are a great place to capture design assets, business rules, and examples that span multiple stories. When planning a new feature, start with the epic, and use the Epic Stories panel to add and prioritize related stories. The Epics panel provides a quick visual of progress and status of all the project’s active epics. You can mouse over the bar graph showing relative epic size to see how many stories are in each state, along with a projected epic completion date. You can use the Epic Stories panel to clearly see story priorities, and change them by dragging them within the panel.

For some creative ways to prioritize your epics, complete them more quickly, and make milestones more visible, see these epic tips for epics.

Managing priorities
You can choose from a variety of ways to make priorities visible in Tracker. If you need to move many stories around in your Backlog or Icebox, cloning the panel to more easily drag them to a new position helps. Selecting multiple stories for dragging to a new location—or for updating via the Bulk Actions menu—can also save you time. As mentioned in the previous paragraph, you can prioritize stories within an epic by dragging them directly within the Epic Stories panel.

Use release markers to group related stories and clearly reflect their priority.

Promote conversations and fast feedback with @mentions, and stay up to date by following stories.

Measuring progress and continually improving
Use Tracker’s Analytics to track metrics that may help your team identify pain points, shorten cycle time, and improve flow. This information gives managers as well as teams insight into project progress and trends. You can create your own custom reports with Tracker’s API, using endpoints such as Project History, Reports, and Story Transitions.

Working with design
Tracker is oriented towards software development work, where teams deliver agreed-upon desired outcomes for each story and feature. Managing design work presents a different set of challenges. You can try some alternative approaches to promote collaboration among designers and the rest of the team, and ensure design tasks are planned and tracked for each feature.

Design projects
Design teams often have their own backlogs, in a dedicated Tracker project for design work. They conduct planning meetings to discuss and estimate stories. A dedicated design project in Tracker makes design work more visible. Everyone on the delivery team can see what the design team is working on. They see the design ideas for upcoming features and follow the discussions and decision-making about each design. When a design story is delivered in Tracker, the product owner can accept the design or ask for more changes.

Development epics
Epics in the development project are a convenient place to attach design assets for each feature. Design updates can be recorded in the epic, so that every project member knows where to find the latest information.

Story tasks
One way to track design work for an individual feature story is to add design tasks to the story that can be checked off when completed.

Using labels to address design needs
Individual feature stories often require design work. Use labels to indicate that a story “needs design” or to inform developers to “pair with designer.” You can also assign a designer as a story owner. A “design accept” label alerts the designer to check the delivered story or pair with the product owner, tester, or other team member to review delivered work. When designs are implemented and approved, a label like “design accepted” denotes that all design tasks are completed for that story. Or, depending on your workflow, a designer can mark the story accepted.

Tracker and testing
Each software feature involves many testing activities. Just to give a few examples, developing a single story may require writing and automating acceptance tests, as well as functional, security, load, performance, usability, and end-to-end testing. Here are some ways to make your Tracker project’s testing activities more visible.

Description, tasks, and comments
Stories are a placeholder for conversations, and getting the right amigos together to talk about each feature is key. As your team discusses each story to achieve a shared understanding, you may want to capture some details in the story that can be used for writing executable acceptance tests, exploratory testing, and other testing and coding support.

You can put information such as examples, business rules, and outstanding questions in the description. Use Markdown to help organize the details.

Testing activities and notes can also be noted as tasks, so they can be marked completed as development proceeds. For example, if you link to a test script in a task, and check it off when it’s run and passed, the person accepting the story knows that the test has been run and passed.

Comments are also a handy placeholder for testing information. You can attach a test matrix, annotated mock-ups, testing charters, and other assets to make sure all necessary testing activities are done.

Links to executable test specs, information on a team wiki, and other documents can be embedded or attached to the story.

Another alternative is to create separate stories in Tracker for your tests. In that case you could use labels, so that clicking on a label will find the test case story or stories, and any related bug and feature stories.

Visibility and workflow using labels and @mentions
Depending on how testing fits into your team’s workflow, you can use labels to indicate if a testing task needs to be done or has been done. For example, a product owner can add a label “needs test” to indicate that exploratory testing is still needed. A tester who’s testing a delivered story can put a label such as “lisa testing” and a label like “test accepted” to show no more work is needed by a tester.

Combining labels with @mentioning team members in comments helps facilitate the workflow. A “design accept” label and an @mention to a designer ensures the designer knows to take a look or pair with a tester or product owner to do acceptance testing. If team members have a question about feature behavior and the product owner or customer isn’t available to ask right then, a @mention can help get the answer or arrange a quick meeting.

Stories for testing activities
A testing activity that extends beyond a particular story is often best represented by its own Tracker feature or chore. For example, exploratory testing charters can be added to the project, with a label that links them to the related epic or feature stories. These stories can be prioritized to be done at the appropriate time and are visible to everyone on the project so that anyone can do that testing.

Something’s missing or incorrect?
Tracker’s workflow assumes that a story that does not meet all specifications, or that is delivered with incorrect behavior, will be rejected. However, sometimes customers miss requirements when writing and discussing the story, or a bug found might not be directly related to that story. Then it might be appropriate to add new stories for the missed requirements or bugs.

Check out more ways to make testing visible in Tracker’s workflow and learn how we approach testing on our own Tracker team.

Supporting customer support
Your team’s customers will ask for new features and report problems. Tracker provides integrations with customer support tools and defect-tracking systems to help you prioritize and collaborate around stories to address them. These stories are created by dragging them in from an integration panel listing external bugs or tickets. They have a clickable link to take you back to the original item that they were created from.

Tracker generally updates linked tickets or items in external systems when the Tracker story changes state, and comments added to the Tracker story will be added to the linked item. However, subsequent updates to the ticket or item in the external system will not be propagated back to Tracker.

The person who has the ticket or bug in their queue in the external system, might update the Tracker story with anything new and relevant that was added there, or alert the product owner or manager running the project containing the story. The product owner or manager might also be watching support or bug system notifications so they can make any needed updates directly.

Typically, new bug reports and stories from external ticketing systems go into the top of the Icebox, which acts as an inbox. You can add a release marker to make this inbox more visible.

Screen Shot 2016-06-27 at 3.09.03 PM

Use labels to indicate that a story is a “feature request,” a “production” bug, “reported often,” or other information to help the product owner and team prioritize the stories appropriately.

If you get a lot of feature requests from users, consider using a dedicated project for these, labelling each request so that you can track how many users have asked for a particular feature.

We encourage you to experiment with different approaches to using Tracker and its workflow. Be sure to check out the integrations that members of our user community have shared to see what might help. Whatever hats you wear on your delivery team, Tracker offers ways to keep your activities visible and stay up to date on the big picture.

The post Tracker and Cross-Functional Teams: Where Do You Fit In? appeared first on Pivotal Tracker.

Categories: Companies

How to Prepare to Strike Out on Your Own and Pursue Your Creative Calling

Pivotal Tracker Blog - Wed, 06/29/2016 - 18:30

Have you contemplated leaving the comforts of a company to strike out on your own to pursue a creative calling?

Perhaps you have an idea for a product or service. While there’s a strong pull to pursue it, hesitation maybe holding you back.

You’re worried about being good enough, attracting customers and clients, and how to make it all come together to find fulfillment, while at the same time tending to the practical side of things like paying the bills!

You’ve probably heard plenty of stories around striking out to build a startup, raise capital, and pursue a big idea. While that sounds exciting, you’re looking for an alternative approach…

Well, in today’s episode of FemgineerTV, we’re going to be tackling all these topics. To help us out, I’ve invited Jessica Hische, who is a letter, illustrator, and type designer.

Jessica began her career working for a design studio called HeadCase. She then went on to work for a prominent designer, Louise Fili, and eventually struck out on her own. Jessica has had notable clients like Wes Anderson, David Eggers, Tiffany Co, and Nike, just to name a few.

As you watch this episode, you’ll learn:

  • Steps you can take early in your career, such as how to reach out to people or companies you want to work for and learn from;
  • Why a day job can be immensely valuable and how to find one that is nurturing;
  • Why you don’t have to run a 10+ person design studio or a 100+ startup, and can be a solopreneur;
  • How to reconcile your client’s vision with your own creative desires;
  • How to get compensated fairly by conveying the price and value of your work;
  • Why learning tangential skills as a creative can be helpful when it comes to hiring; and
  • How to balance side projects and attract work with the day-to-day work that pays the bills.

Whether you’ve been in your career for 6 months or 6+ years, and have toyed with the idea of doing your own thing but weren’t sure how to set your own terms, this episode is for you!

For those of you who are interested in design and typography, check out Jessica’s latest book In Progress. We also talked about her popular post, “The Dark Art of Pricing,” which you can read here.

Listen to the episode on iTunes!

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FemgineerTV is produced as a partnership between Femgineer and Pivotal Tracker. San Francisco video production by StartMotionMEDIA.

The post How to Prepare to Strike Out on Your Own and Pursue Your Creative Calling appeared first on Pivotal Tracker.

Categories: Companies

Obscure Gradle Error: RSA premaster secret error

A little madness - Wed, 03/30/2016 - 05:30

Just a quick post in case anyone else runs into the same obscure scenario. Setting up a new Gradle project on my OSX dev machine, the build could not download any files from Maven Central. When trying to establish an SSH connection I was getting:

RSA premaster secret error

A web search didn’t turn up much, making it clear this was not a common issue. The only hits I found where outdated or unusual configurations, whereas I believed I had a pretty vanilla setup.

Long story short, the problem was I had globally set the java.ext.dirs system property to the empty string to prevent another, unrelated (and equally obscure) error in the past. That was too blunt an approach — the JVM at the very least needs $JAVA_HOME/jre/lib/ext to be included in java.ext.dirs to load some core jars, including sunjce_provider.jar which includes implementations of the encryption algorithms required to establish SSL connections. User error on my part, which I paid for with wasted time — I hope this post saves someone from the same mistake!

Categories: Companies

All the small things

Agile Zen - Wed, 12/17/2014 - 20:19

Over the past couple of weeks, we’ve released a few small changes:

1) Links no longer open in the same window.

2) The backlog can now be pinned open. If you click the thumbtack in the backlog, it will stay open until you unpin it for that project.


3) You can now have cards default to the top of a phase instead of the bottom. Your setting will be persisted by project.



Categories: Companies

[Recap] Fast IT: Concepts and Examples from Assembla and Attivio

Assembla Blog - Thu, 07/31/2014 - 22:51

Last week, Sid Probstein, CTO of Attivio, and Andy Singleton, founder of Assembla presented a webinar about “Fast IT,” a new way of managing rapidly changing and Agile projects in areas like mobile, Web, analytics and marketing applications, while working smoothly with reliable core systems ("Core IT"). Andy discussed the dynamics of Fast IT, and Sid presented a case study of how Attivio spun up a major Business Intelligence app in two weeks with two people.

If you missed the webinar, view and download the slides

Want an overview of Fast IT in 60 seconds? Watch the video below:

Get notified about new and exciting content around Fast IT by completing the form below:


Categories: Companies

Assembla now allows automatic payments with PayPal

Assembla Blog - Fri, 07/25/2014 - 20:17

Paying for your Assembla subscription with PayPal has never been easier. We recently added the ability to set up recurring payments with PayPal that will automatically pay for your Assembla subscription every billing period, whether that be monthly or annually. Previously, it was a manual process that required logging in and paying every time an invoice was created.

To set up automatic payments with PayPal, visit your billing page > select the PayPal option > and follow the steps.

assembla paypal option1

If you have any questions or issues, please contact Assembla support at

Categories: Companies

Post Assembla events to your favorite chat apps: Slack, HipChat, Flowdock & more

Assembla Blog - Wed, 07/16/2014 - 02:26

If your team uses Slack, HipChat, Flowdock, or Bigplans for communication, we have added preconfigured webhooks to make setting up these integrations painless. Once configured, you can selectively manage the Assembla events that are posted out to these apps, such as ticket activity, commits, deploys, etc., to monitor project activity in real-time, inline with other team communication.

To get started, click on the desired integration below: slack logo HipChat Logo flowdock logo Bigplans logo
Categories: Companies

Interested in cryptocurrencies? Get started with 1000 free Ripple XRP

Assembla Blog - Tue, 07/15/2014 - 20:55

ripple logo

Ripple is a protocol for value exchange that makes it easy to transfer and trade fiat currencies, Bitcoin, or XRP - the native asset of the Ripple network.

Assembla is giving away 1000 free XRP (the Ripple native cyptocurrency) to any person with software development skills who is interested in learning about Ripple development. Get it here:

I called Ripple Labs a few months ago to find out more about ways that their "gateway" can help us pay developers in many different countries. Essentially, we do banking for the developers on our global team. We pay internal accounts, hold the money until they ask for it, and then transfer money to them by bank wire, ATM/Payoneer, or other mechanisms. We have found that the bank wire system is embarrassingly slow and unreliable. This is the problem that Ripple is trying to fix. Their gateway is like a bank in an open-source box. It keeps accounts in any currency, including USD, other currencies, XRP, and Bitcoin. It can transfer those accounts instantly and reliably on the shared "ledger." It is also gaining exciting new features such as "multi-signature" which enables outsourcing and crowdsourcing customers to post a budget amount, and then transfer it to their hard-working suppliers through an arbitrator.

Now I am working more closely with Ripple to help them scale up their development process. I decided to make this free XRP offer for two reasons:

  • Users need 20 XRP to activate a Ripple wallet. We want to remove the hassle from acquiring the XRP so new developers can get started.
  • We want to build an email list of developers that might be interested in working on internal development, bounties, or bank integration projects.
ripple blog CTA
Categories: Companies