Kanbanpad is proud to introduce our new and improved task window! Our old interface was getting a bit cumbersome, so we decided to streamline it, and add a few awesome features at the same time!
That right kids, now whenever you make a change to a text field, those changes will automatically be saved when you either click in a different area, close the task, or even close the browser window.
We have also made the task window header match the color of the task.
With our new action menu, a simple mouse-over will give you access to the features you already love(backlogging or deleting tasks), and it makes room for more exciting features and addons to come(foreshadowing;).
You may be asking yourself, what the heck is this “?” for? Like many of you, we work with a distributed team, stretching across a wide range of time zones and bed times. From time to time one developer will have a question for a developer who may not yet be online. Well now all they need to do is mark the task with a big fat “?”, assign the other person to the task, and Viola, communication is improved, and the day is saved.
Every so often when you hear people talk about kaban, they tend to have questions like “are we doing it right?” or “our board has more than 3 columns, is that OK?” The truth is, there is no such thing as the perfect kanban board - only the one that is best for you and your organization.
The beauty of capital K Kanban, is its focus on modeling your existing workflow, whatever that may be. This allows you to get some distance from the trees and get a big picture view of how your process works or, more importantly, how it doesn’t work. By applying the concepts of modeling your workflow, and identifying roadblocks, you can begin to tailor your process and your board to better suit your needs. So whether you require 12 distinct steps each with multiple sub-steps, 2 swim-lanes and 8 classes of service, or you find that “to do”, “doing” and “done” are all you require, so long as it works for you, and you continue looking for ways to improve, then congratulations! You are doing Kanban right.
There are all kinds of great uses for Kanbanpad, aside from office work. This great organizational tool can be used in all aspects of your busy life. To help you find more uses for your Kanbanpad account we are going to be showcasing Board Spotlights. Our first one is going to be a wedding! See the Kanbanpad Board for a wedding here: https://www.kanbanpad.com/projects/ec1787ea65e37afe8e82
Perhaps you may be able to use it or share it with a friend that is looking to get married. Next month we’ll have something new. Do you have any suggestions or requests? Shoot us a reply with your ideas to; firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here at Kanbanpad, we have started a User Spotlight as well. Flaunt your flow at Kanbanpad and in return get some recognition for your project. It’s a win win situation!
I know, I promised you excitement and adventure, and what’s more enthralling than cleaning your house? If you’re anything like me, you can be easily overwhelmed by all of the honey-do’s for the day. I don’t know where to start, I don’t have a clear plan of attack, and I end up with a halfway cleaned house. (Or not cleaned at all…)
Using Kanbanpad, we can organize our chores, and watch as our chores are finished one by one, and our house transforms itself from a mess to a mansion. Let’s get ready to get our hands dirty, and our house clean.
I’ve created all of my tasks for today’s adventure, and it looks a little harrowing, but I’m sure I can do it. Using the urgent tag, I’ve denoted which tasks are most important to get done in a timely fashion. I’ve used column-coding to denote task areas within the house. Whether it’s the whole house, bedroom, living room, or kitchen, I can now attack the mess one room at a time instead of going from one to the other. I’ve also included a color coding system to signify automatic chores such as washing the dishes or doing laundry, small tasks, large tasks, and tasks that need to be finished last (such as sweeping/mopping.) These tasks can be completed while I work on other tasks simultaneously allowing me to pull another task from my queue.
By starting with small tasks such as cleaning the kitchen counters or putting away my DVDs, I can already see things make their way into the finished column, and give myself a sense of accomplishment, adding to my motivation to tidy.
Next, I decide which room to tackle first. It’s up to you personally, but I would rather work on a room with the least amount of tasks so I can get it finished and move onto the next room. However, that could leave me with a time issue, and rooms with more tasks may end up being rushed. You could start with the more visible rooms, such as the living room or kitchen. It’s really up to you, that’s the beauty of Kanbanpad, you have complete control, we’re just here to help you get it done.
As C-Day goes on, I complete my rooms. Kanbanpad has become a great motivator for me. I feel a sense of accomplishment every time a move a task from the queue to in process, from in process to finished, and when I finish an entire column, I feel great.
We love these ideas, and we’ve been busy making Kanbanpad the ideal Personal Kanban tool, and we wanted to share with all of you what we’ve been doing, and even more importantly, why.
Take a moment to think about your to-do list. Whether mental, written down, or tracked with a listing app, your to-do list is lying to you. Your list is a clump of large tasks, and you have the very real intention of meticulously crossing off each of them until you’re left with a pile of completed tasks. It calls to you like a siren, with promises of productivity and accomplishment, and convinces you that this cluster of tasks is the epitome of project management happiness.
To do lists lead to several efficiency roadblocks. Multitasking is a myth, overloading is a real detriment to accomplishment, and the shotgun approach to task management leads to a lot of half-finished items. Yet, we continue to use to-do lists, believing wholeheartedly that we’re the problem. We lack the motivation and responsibility to complete our tasks, and our to-do lists are the victims, being horribly neglected by their cruel masters. None of this is true.
Multitasking doesn’t exist. What we believe to be multitasking is really task-switching. The average human brain can process a finite number of tasks at one time. We’re constantly switching back and forth between to-do list tasks, which requires a period of brain-resetting, putting yourself back into the optimum frame of mind for the task you’ve switched to. Meanwhile, as you’re juggling your tasks with the perceived ease of a circus performer, here comes Mr. Manager, Mrs. Wife, or any of the other influences in your life asking you for “one quick thing.” How do we get anything done this way? It’s simple. We don’t.
Multitasking leads to overloading. That moment when you take a step back and realize “there’s no way I’m going to get all of this done,” is very real and can lead to only two ends. Either we end up with a few finished tasks and a lot of half-finished tasks, or we finish all of our tasks, but they’re sloppy and internally incomplete. Neither of these are ideal.
The shotgun approach is how many people go about tackling their to-do lists. Do a little here, a little there, eventually we’ll end up with everything done. That’s not how it works. We envision ourselves dividing our tasks into smaller, easier to maintain tasks and valiantly slaying them in a giant battle just you against your numerous tasks. In reality, however, we’re pricking each of them with a push-pin, hoping that’s enough damage to move onto the next rapidly-approaching foe.
But, how do we fix this? How do we pry ourselves away from our to-do lists, and where do we from there?
Two words: Personal Kanban.
Kanbanpad is our gift to the project management world, and now we’ve made it just as easy for you to use Kanbanpad for your personal life.
Let us introduce Personal Kanbanpad. It’s easy to get started and is viewable from the same dashboard you’re used to seeing in your working life.
To start, create a project, in the pop up modal, choose “Personal” from the Privacy Level drop down. You can still assign personal kanban boards to organizations, or you can keep them private.
Once inside your project it will look very similar to other Kanban projects. The difference here is that there the UI elements for assigning tasks are gone. This simplifies Kanbanpad boards to fit more effectively into your personal life. Just as you do with any other Kanbanpad board youc an adjust your columns to fit your project or life. You can start with something as simple as a 1 column board, with your backlog, completed tasks, and an in-progress column.
As you begin to shape personal Kanban to fit into your everyday life, you will adjust your board accordingly by adding or deleting columns, adjusting Work In Progress (WIP) limits, or any of the many other ways Kanbanpad allows you to shape your Kanban experience.
Get your life in order and start getting stuff done! Let us know how you like our new Personal Kanban.
How To Archive a Project
Archiving project is a simple two-click solution. When you login to Kanbanpad you might notice a few new icons next to each of your projects. These icons are to help you quickly archive, restore, delete, and open your projects. Take a look:
Clicking the archive button will prompt the following popup, allowing you to second guess your archiving decision.
From there we simply click “OK” to archive the project, or we can click “Cancel” to abort archiving.
How to Restore a Project
Don’t fret, once a project is archived it can be restored! First of all, we need to have the ability to view our archived projects. On your top toolbar you will see that Kanbanpad has given you the option to toggle your archived project views.
Now, once the page reloads, you can see your archived projects alongside your live projects. From here you can see the contents of your archived project by opening it, or you can restore it to a live state by clicking the restore icon. It looks similar to the archive button, only it signifies a change in the opposite way.
Once that button is clicked, your project is restored, and will be visible whether or not you have the “Show Archived Projects” toggle on.
So, there you go! De-clutter your Kanbanpad dashboard quickly, and keep track of past projects simply and easily.
- Team Kanbanpad
Last week we were at the Lean Systems & Software Conference in Boston, MA getting the word out about Kanbanpad and Clutch, and boy was it a success. Our setup was pretty cool! We had a monitor displaying an online Kanban board, as well as two iPads on hand to demonstrate the flawless integration of Kanbanpad on both mobile and online, and we’ve gotten pretty great at our demonstrations. There was a lot of buzz about the happiest project management tool on Earth floating around the conference, and we’ve collected a lot of feedback about what features are most important to you, our users.
Our ringleader, Ron Evans (@deadprogram) had the opportunity to give his lightning talk, “How To Jam in Flow” that had conference attendees up on their feet and demonstrated using musical interaction as a way to stimulate group flow. It was a lot of fun clapping, “shhhing”, and “aeeeueeeeiiiiiieeeeuuuing” our way to team solidarity. Ron showed us a unique way to teach a valuable lesson and got the crowd ready to go for the rest of a beautiful day at LSSC.
When it comes to conferences, schwag is king, and the Kanbanpad team came equipped with some pretty useful gear. Our Clippy Kanbanpads were designed to be used with your physical Kanban board. Just because Kanbanpad is online, doesn’t mean you can’t have Clippy with you in the real world! I may have snuck off with a pad or two myself…
It was great meeting so many key members of the Kanban community and attending seminars taught by some of the brightest minds in agile. We gained a whole lot of important knowledge that we’re going to apply toward your Kanbanpad experience. Keep an eye out for some key features to be deployed in the future.
Take a look at some of the photos we took at LSSC, we wish we had more to show, but we were busy having way too much fun!
The excitement around our tool is growing, and we continue to see new individuals and teams signing up everyday, and we have you, our dearest users to thank for that. Thank you for helping us to grow and cultivate the happiest project management tool on Earth!
We Are Happy To Notify You
We’ve been working away on many improvements to our notifications system over the last couple months.
You can now choose to only receive daily or weekly summary of the projects you care about.
In order to see these changes, please:
1. Log In
2. Open a project
3. Click on the project’s drop down menu:
4. Select “Notification Settings” and you will see the options for receiving daily or weekly summaries:
In addition, you can choose to follow updates for specific tasks only. In order to see this change, follow the steps listed above. Under the “Notifications Settings” menu, you will see a drop down bar that allows you to follow updates for specific tasks only:
Our email notifications also have some new HTML formatting. Here is a difference between the old email notifications:
and our new notifications:
I hope you enjoy our improvements =)
- The Hybrid Team
It’s been a couple months now since Kanbanpad released our Russian-translated version to the public. I’ve been meaning to officially release it by writing a blog post, but it kept getting pushed to the end of the priorities list. Anyway, there’s some time now so I’ll start writing.
Back in September, one of our users (Maksim Makarov) approached us one day to ask to help translate the site to Russian in order to help his team use our service. We thought the offer was cool, so we sent over the text of the site in English and he returned the translated text a few days later. We then set up i18n support and silently released it.
We determine the language for a user by using the Accept-Language header sent by the browser. Chances are this is already automatically set when you installed the browser, so there’s usually no change necessary on your part. If it was not set up automatically or if you want to check it out, please see your browser’s language settings and set Russian to be at the top of the list.
I asked Maksim to write a little bit of his side of the story, so here it is: LEAN APPROACH TO MANAGING TASKS / Бережливый подход к управлению задачами
Unfortunately, since no one in our team speaks fluent Russian, we won’t be able to reply to feedback or support requests written in Russian.
Lastly, I’d like to publicly thank Maksim for his work in translating the text of the site. We really appreciate it and it helped us gain some traction with users that we would not have been able to reach otherwise. Thank you Maksim!