October 11, 2019

Board Genius has Launched!

Matt @TacosToGo

That final 10% takes 120% of the time! After a year of part-time work, Board Genius is finally live. Total amount of work was about 230 hours.

What did I learn?

Not a new lesson but a great reminder that being at the whim of other people's APIs is a scary place. Jira, for example, is so tedious to wrangle and the documentation is somehow verbose yet not helpful! Sometimes you can't do what you thought. Other times, you have to jump through 10 hoops to achieve a simple task. This is a problem I'll have to keep dealing with over and over as I add more integration and maintain existing ones.

The savior of the project is unit testing. Without that, Board Genius would have been broken so many times in ways that are very hard or lengthly to test/debug. Unit tests keep an eye on tedious and hidden areas of the application logic.

So all the hard work is done now, right!? Oh wait, what's that about marketing? ...

  1. 1

    I think this is a useful tool. However... when I was faced with this problem at my most recent company the first thing I did was bring everyone into alignment under the one tool (jira).

    It’s the cheaper and more sensible option. If you have a big department like I have then everyone using different tools is just chaotic and a good leadership will solve that problem with alignment.

    1. 1

      I agree that's the most sensible option. It's not always possible, though. In my situation, I would be managing a team of developers working a project for my client who uses Jira. In that situation, there are a few reasons for me to use a different tool:

      • I don't want my team of 5-10 developers to have to keep track of all the noise going on in my client's Jira - I want them focused.
      • I want to be able to add tickets for my devs that my client doesn't need to see or keep track of
      • I want my developers to be able to have technical discussions (i.e. comments on issues) that the client doesn't see
      • I don't want my client talking directly to my developers via Jira
      • I remember a client where each Jira user cost $25/month. My client doesn't want to pay hundreds of dollars a month to add my team.
      1. 1

        I can see where the fundamental difference is now.... client work. I never have and never will do client work in that sense, but I can see how this would make sense if you have an agency style business model.