Views are unique to Kerika: no other work management system provides such an easy way to see what matters, across all the boards you are working on.
These Views make it easy for organizations to really scale up their use of Kerika across multiple projects and many ongoing projects at the same time.
We have now added a very useful new View: What’s New and Updated. As you might guess from the name, this View lets you catch up on everything that’s new and changed, across all the boards you are working on — as a Board Admin, Team Member or Visitor.
This View can work very effectively as a Dashboard for managers who need to keep track of many different boards, all working at the same time: instead of constantly revisiting each board one-by-one, this View is a simple, comprehensive way to see everything that’s changing across all your boards.
The updates are shown in Kerika’s unique “heads-up” notification style: the blue New tags highlight cards that have been newly added to your boards (that you haven’t opened yet), and the orange highlights show you precisely what’s changed on your old cards.
The new and changed cards are sorted into columns, with each column containing all the new and changed items within a particular board. The newest changes appear at the top of a column, and if a board has nothing new to report, the corresponding column is not shown (so your View doesn’t get cluttered up.)
(Cards that are moved to the Done or Trash columns on a board are not included in the View, to help avoid getting the View cluttered.)
As with all Views, it’s easy to operate on all the cards within a column, by selecting the Column Actions button that appears on the top of each column:
The Mark All Cards As Read action is useful if you want to ignore everything that’s going on in a particular board, e.g. when you have just returned from a status meeting where you got fully briefed on what’s happening on a particular board.
Another way to temporarily ignore individual boards is to Hide Column: this collapses the column from the View, and let’s you focus more intently on the handful of boards you care most about.
Selecting a card in this View lets you open the card within the View itself, or to open it on the board where the card actually sits:
(Sometimes it’s easy to deal with cards just by themselves; sometimes the View Board action is more helpful, if you want to be sure you understand the full context in which a card changed.)
Using your mouse’s right-click action will also bring up a bunch of useful actions for that card:
In addition to all the other actions you can perform on cards, you also have the option to get the URL (address) of card using the Get Link action. Every cards, every canvas and every board in Kerika has a unique address, and using these URLs anywhere on a board, e.g. in the board’s details or chat, will automatically set up a link between the two cards.
When you mark a card as “read” on this View, it remains on the View until you click on the Refresh button (shown at the top-right corner of the View).
And, as with all Views in Kerika, the What’s New and Updated View includes the “For Me” toggle button on the top-right corner: clicking this will quickly filter the View to show you just those items that are personally assigned to you.
This feature is available to all our users, just like every other feature in Kerika: it doesn’t matter whether you are still in your 30-day free trial, you are working on the free Individual Plan, or are benefiting from Kerika’s free Academic and Nonprofits Accounts. Everyone always get the same Kerika goodies 🙂
We have offered free accounts to small nonprofits and schools/universities from the very beginning of Kerika’s existence, but this was always on an ad hoc basis: someone would occasionally ask us for a free account for their school or nonprofit team, and we would agree.
Looking back, we found that we agreed to almost 99% of all the requests that ever came to us: the only situations where we turned someone down were
When we couldn’t figure out what the nonprofit was doing, or even whether it really existed. (Having a domain for your school/nonprofit really helps, even if it is not in English.)
When the school was for-profit, (We dodn’t see why we should subsidize for-profit organizations.)
When the organization was essentially a governmental entity that was getting funded through public money in a normal way.
With these caveats aside, we have tried to be very generous and helpful for small organizations that are doing philanthropic work, or are schools.
But our old process for dealing with these requests was really haphazard, and when we implemented our new billing system and improved account management features, we also made it easier for us to grant nonprofit status to a much larger group of organizations, providing they are small teams.
Our new process makes everything much easier for schools and nonprofits: we are whitelisting entire domainsso that everyone from that domain who signs up automatically gets a free Academic & Nonprofit Account.
This means that only person ever needs to make a request on behalf of a school or university: if that gets approved, we will approve it for everyone from that school/university.
With a free Academic/Nonprofit Account you can have up to 10 people working on boards owned by that account: it doesn’t matter how many boards you have, or how big these boards are.
If you need more than 10 people, you will need to sign up for a Professional Account, which is $7 per user, per month (normally billed annually, as $84 per user).
Here’s a partial list of schools and universities we have already whitelisted for free service:
Adler Graduate Professional School, adler.ca
American Quality Leadership & Educational Management, aqlem.com
Arizona State University, asu.edu
Austin Community College, austincc.edu
Australian Pacific College, apc.edu.au
Bethlehem University, Palestine, bethlehem.edu
Boston University, bu.edu
California State University, Fullerton, csu.fullerton.edu
Campbell University, campbell.edu
Carnegie Mellon University, cmu.edu
Catholic Education Diocese of Wagga Wagga, Australia, ww.catholic.edu.au
Clemson University, clemson.edu
Cochise College, cochise.edu
Coconino Community College, coconino.edu
College Euroamericano, Monterrey, colegioeuro.edu.mx
College La Grange du Bois, Savigny Le Temple, clg-la-grange-du-bois-savigny-le-temple.fr
Colorado State University, colostate.edu
Cornell University, cornell.edu
Crefito-3, Sao Paulo, crefito3.org.br
Duke University, duke.edu
Edmonds Community College, edcc.edu
Escuela de Educacion Secundaria Tecnica No. 5 de San Martin, Argentina, galileo.edu.ar
Everett Community College, everettcc.edu
Faciplac, Brasilia, faciplac.edu.br
Fundacion de Estudios Superiores Universitarios, Medellin, fesu.edu.co
George Fox University, georgefox.edu
Humboldt State University, humboldt.edu
ICDL Colombia, icdlcolombia.org
Iḷisaġvik College, ilisagvik.edu
Indiana University, iu.edu
Institucion Universitaria Colegio Mayor del Cauca, Colombia, unimayor.edu.co
Instituto Potosino de Investigacion Cientifica y Technologica, Mexico, ipicyt.edu.mx
Instituto Superior de Ciências Económicas e Empresariais, Cape Verde, iscee.edu.cv
Instituto Superior de Formacion Docente Salome Urena, Dominican Republic, isfodosu.edu.do
Iowa State University, iastate.edu
Kalamazoo Valley Community College, kvcc.edu
Kirtland Community College, kirtland.edu
Kuruwi, Cabo San Lucas, kuruwi.edu.mx
Lane Community College, lanecc.edu
Macquarie University, mq.edu.au
Maricopa Community Colleges, maricopa.edu
Michigan Tech University, mtu.edu
Mid Michigan College, midmich.edu
Milwaukee Area Technical College, matc.edu
Mount Holyoke College, mtholyoke.edu
Mount Wachusett Community College, mwcc.edu
Mundo Sin Fronteras, Oaxaca, sinfronteras.edu.mx
National Kaohsiung University of Science and Technology, Tawian, kuas.edu.tw
National Taiwan University of Science and Technology, ntust.edu.tw
Newman University, newmanu.edu
North Carolina State University, ncsu.edu
Oregon Health Sciences University, ohsu.edu
Ośrodek Szkolenia, Krakow, straz.edu.pl
Paul Cuffee School, paulcuffee.org
Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine, pcom.edu
Thanks to a longtime user from Poland, we discovered — and fixed — a bug that crept into one of our recent feature enhancements, where items couldn’t be permanently deleted from the Trash column on Task Boards and Scrum Boards.
The Kerika team works in 2-week Sprints, but not every Sprint results in a feature being deployed to production: sometimes we have to wait for enough pieces to be built before we can release an entire feature.
(Bug fixes always get deployed at the end of each Sprint, and we we aim to have zeroknown bugs at all times.)
If you left Kerika running overnight in your browser while we rolled out a new version, it’s important to make sure your browser updates itself to get the latest software from our server.
To make this easier, we are introducing a notification inside the app that will let you know that you need to reload/refresh Kerika to make sure you are working with the latest version. This notification appears only when we have a new version deployed, and we can detect (or suspect) that your browser is running outdated code.
Hope you like it — we finally got around to customizing the WordPress TwentyThirteen theme we have been using for this blog.
Nothing fancy; just making sure the colors and font (especially the fonts!) are consistent with our website and app. We use Roboto everywhere now: we find this to be a really easy to read font for most screens, and think that Google did a great job in coming up to an alternative to the traditional Arial/Helvetica.
We are also trying to clean up the Categories and Tags we use to help you find older blogs: there were too many overlapping categories/tags that had accumulated over the years so we got rid of a bunch of them.
We have been busy through the holiday season, as usual, but there isn’t a lot of stuff to show you yet since the big new thing we are working on — a more automated and efficient account management and billing system — won’t be ready for a while.
Meanwhile, we have been working through bug fixes on a regular basis; many of them obscure and probably unnoticed by anyone but the Kerika team itself, but we don’t like to have known bugs sitting around so we knock off bugs fairly quickly even if no one has complained (yet).
Here are some of the bug fixes we have done recently (in no particular order):
A problem that affected direct sign up users who wanted to preview their documents, but didn’t allow third-party cookies to be set in their browsers.
An obscure situation where someone who owned a board, but wasn’t part of the board team, shared it with another user: in some situations the second user didn’t see this board listed correctly in their Shared With Me tab of their Home page.
Another obscure circumstance in which a board owner’s face wasn’t shown correctly in the Shared With Me tab of other users.
Helping a user restore access to a board that had gotten corrupted somehow in the database: this wasn’t the user’s fault and we wanted to make sure no work was lost.
Some improvements to labels used in My Preferences to clarify (better) the user’s choices.
Fixing at least one situation where someone wanting to sign up with their Google ID (as a Kerika+Google user) was getting endlessly redirected by Google and never reaching Kerika. (For some reason everyone who reported this problem is located in Norway; don’t know why…)
A problem affecting direct sign up users: they weren’t seeing thumbnails of their files in their Kerika cards and canvases.
Some situations where a browser left running Kerika overnight didn’t refresh itself automatically the next morning, and required the user to manually refresh the view.
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.)
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
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