Category Archives: Tutorials

Tutorials on using Kerika.

A new system of welcome emails for new users

Along with our recent (and ongoing) effort to update all the Kerika tutorial videos, we will be rolling out a new system of sending welcome emails to new users.

These emails will come once a day for the first 10 days or so (it depends upon how many tutorial videos we end up creating), and each email will include a link to a specific tutorial: e.g. how files are managed in Kerika, or how teams can be set up.

Our goal is to help new users learn about core features of Kerika as quickly as possible, over the first couple of weeks of their usage.

These emails are distinct from the notifications that might be generated through your normal usage of Kerika, such as (optionally) getting a task summary sent at 6AM.

A simple unsubscribe system is also being rolled out in conjunction with these emails: if a user doesn’t find these tutorials helpful, they can stop receiving them.

Wrestling with SSL certificates

We had previously been using SSL certificates for our website (kerika.com) and this blog (which is on a subdomain: blog.kerika.com) that we got from GoDaddy, but we have moved away from them.

What pushed us away was their aggressive approach to billing customers: they automatically renewed our SSL certificates after just 9 months into a 12-month contract, which we found unacceptable.  Talking to their customer service people was an unhappy experience as well, so we decided to not do any more business with GoDaddy.

Now we are using a SSL from Amazon for our website and app (kerika.com): Amazon actually provides free SSL certificates to sites hosted on Amazon Web Services, and it was easy and simple to set up.

However, AWS doesn’t provide wildcard SSL certificates so we couldn’t handle our blog as well — particularly as our blog isn’t hosted at AWS. Instead we got a SSL certificate for the blog from RapidSSL which is reasonably priced.

So far, so good.

Kanban vs Scrum: what’s the difference, and which should you use?

We have a complete (one-hour long) video of the tutorial presented by Arun Kumar, CEO of Kerika, at the recent Lean Transformation Conference on the subject of Kanban vs Scrum: what’s the difference, and which should you use?

(The slides for this talk, and more, can be found on Slideshare.)

Topics covered:

Forming a team 00:01:32

The Product Owner 00:02:01

The Scrum Master 00:02:55

The Scrum Team 00:03:55

Pulling Work 00:04:04

The Product Backlog 00:05:45

Scrum Stories 00:06:25

Writing a good Story 00:07:35

From Epics to Stories 00:10:25

From Stories to Tasks 00:11:13

Estimating with Story Points 00:13:04

Organizing a Sprint 00:15:00

How long is a Sprint? 00:19:15

Sprints in theory 00:20:32

Sprints in real-life 00:20:53

Daily Standups 00:23:25

Burndown Charts 00:24:13

Team Velocity 00:25:35

Best Practices for Getting Scrum Right 00:28:00

The Nuclear Option 00:30:57

Where does Scrum work best? 00:32:02

Scrum in Government 00:33:25

Where does Kanban work best? 00:35:43

Collaboration Networks 00:37:25

Paper doesn’t scale 00:38:30

Using Kerika for Personal Kanban 00:39:50

Using Kerika for Team Kanban 00:40:24

Using Kerika in the Public Sector 00:40:37

Using Kerika for Scrum Projects 00:40:54

Capturing stories as “virtual sticky notes” 00:41:20

Summary 00:42:57

Question: how do you deal with poor performers on the team? 00:49:15

Question: in Scrum, are units of measure like lines of code still applicable? 00:50:08

Question: how do you measure individual performance? 00:51:03

Question: how do you handle poor performers within a team? 00:52:25

Question: when do you use the Nuclear Option? 00:54:20

Question: how do you estimate stories? 00:55:54

Photo credits: Abdul-Rasul Kassamali, Jama Abdirahman.