Kerika makes Scrum easy for everyone, even people who are not techies. This tutorial video shows how you can set up boards for each of your Scrum Sprints.
We just updated Kerika today, and along with the usual bug fixes and other behind-the-scenes stuff we have made an improvement to the way Views are shown on your Home Page:
Some of our users have dozens of boards in active use at the same time, with large (and sometimes overlapping) teams, and as a result their Views counts are nearly always high.
As you can see from the screenshot above, the Home page now shows two counts for each View:
- The total number of items that match for that View, and
- The number of items that match that are assigned to you.
This makes it easier to see if you need to go back to a View to catch up on something that’s directly related to you, i.e. is assigned to you.
We are (finally!) getting around to updating the Kerika tutorial videos; what we have on our YouTube channel has definitely gotten stale.
Here’s the first in the new series:
This video is intended for new users: people who discover Kerika and sign up to start new accounts.
For people who sign up by clicking on an invitation email sent from a coworker, we have a different video that is more focused around their needs:
And, finally, for people who sign up to use Kerika with Google Apps — and this is the vast majority of Kerika users, worldwide — we have this video:
There’s a lot more coming.
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 used to have a feature that let you get a task summary email from Kerika everyday at 6AM that summarized all the things that you were responsible for that are overdue, due this week or due next week.
When we introduced the Views feature, we thought perhaps this 6AM email was not needed any more, so we took it out of the user interface for a few months — although people who had previously been using this feature continued to get their daily emails.
It seems like we underestimated the usefulness of this feature: new users started asking for something just like it, so we have brought the feature back. (And thanks for helping us understand we had screwed up in taking it away.)
You can access this feature from your Preferences page:
This email can show your tasks organized in two different ways, and, if you like, you can get both sent to you every day:
A typical task summary, where tasks are grouped by date, would look like this:
The board names and card names are also links that you can use to open the relevant work item.
When we first added the ability for you to add a list of tasks to a card on a Task Board or Scrum Board, our expectation was that these tasks would be short and to the point: maybe just a few words long.
And to make the display of tasks neat and tidy inside a card’s details view, we truncated long tasks to show just two lines worth. We figured this was a reasonable restriction that would make the layout look better, and wouldn’t actually inconvenience anyone since we really didn’t expect people to create very complex tasks, that might take more than one sentence to spell out.
Well, that turned out to be a bad assumption: the tasks feature turned out to be far more popular than we expected, and we soon started getting complaints from people that didn’t like seeing their tasks get truncated to two lines.
We have fixed that with our latest update to Kerika: now, all tasks will show fully, no matter how long they are. Here’s an example:
In the example shown above, the first task is long enough to spill out over three lines, and all three lines are shown.
So, there you go: tasks became a little more flexible!
If you create a list of tasks on a card on a Task Board or Scrum Board, Kerika does a bunch of stuff in the background to make sure your view of what’s due, at the card level, board level and account level, are always correct.
We found a couple of edge cases where the due dates on tasks wasn’t rolling up correctly to the card level, potentially giving users a misleading view of what was currently due for them:
- When the last task with a scheduled due date was removed (deleted) from a card, this wasn’t correctly adjusting the due date for the card itself.
- Similarly, when the last task with a scheduled due date was no longer scheduled, this wasn’t correctly adjusting the due date for the card.
Both bugs have been fixed. They were real edge-cases, so it’s likely that most users never noticed them in the first place, but still…