Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Thoughts after an Ideas meeting

The Ideas Quality Backlog meeting was a little different this month. We decided to go through the top ranked ideas on Projectplace Ideas in general and not just the ones with status Quality Backlog. The purpose was to update the User Experience Team on the top needs from our user base and see if there are some that can be at least partially solved with an easy solution.

There are the ideas that we talked about:

I will insert a little comment in each of the ideas that we have discussed and will take some of the more interesting points here, interesting in my own subjective opinion of course.

Dependencies: This is still something that we are looking for more information from you about. What is the big attraction? Please let us know what the actual need is. I have posted a question in this thread a couple of times and haven't had a lot of replies. If this would really help you, please let us know in which scenarios dependencies are necessary and if you're using Planner and/or Tasks for your plan.

Document Management:
  • The Plug-in functionality that we have for Internet Explorer and Firefox extended to more browsers and platforms. It's really nice that you like the Plug-in and PowerTab and we have a taskforce looking into the possibilities of doing something that would work for more users. Let me be absolutely clear about the fact that this is not an easy task and we will not build a specialist solution for each browser - operating system setup. The current Plug-in provides two basic funcionalities: Drag and Drop between Projectplace and your computer and the possibility to open files straight from Projectplace in the right application, use them there, and then save them back to Projectplace when they're closed with integrated serverside lock and version management. As far as I know, noone else can do this for any browser? If I'm wrong please let me know. We would like to look at a solution that works, and does not require extensive installations because at the end of the day, it needs to be easy for our users. While we are looking at this, we are also making sure that the basic interface should be as user friendly as possible, whether or not you use the Plug-in.

  • Syncing of offline content. This is something that we hear from time to time. However, in my experience having worked for Projectplace since 2001 this need is slowly decreasing with more unbiquitous internet access. Feelfree to disagree with me, but please tell me why I'm wrong and when you need it.

Mac Support: It seems like a lot of our Mac users think that we don't support them. Let me just do a quick recap of what I normally say. Projectplace works fine on a Mac and we support it. We recommend Firefox, but you can certainly use Safari aswell for most things. A few things like time reporting don't work in Safari, on a Pc or a Mac. There are two things that are different on a Mac:

  • There is no Plug-in for any web browser on Mac. See above on the discussions about the Plug-in.
  • The online function provided via our partner Netviewer has a different client for Mac. It has less functionality than the Pc client, notably you can not use the inbuilt VoIP in Netviewer for Mac. We hope to get an updated version of Netviewer that includes support for starting online meetings on Mac later this year and I will keep you updated on what the new client will look like. Last time I checked, a week or so ago, it still did not include VoIP but had the possibility to rent a conference call room through the Netviewer client at local rates for the duration of the meeting. Or you could use one of the free VoIP services like Skype.


  1. "Drag and Drop between Projectplace and your computer and the possibility to open files straight from Projectplace in the right application, use them there, and then save them back to Projectplace when they're closed with integrated serverside lock and version management.

    As far as I know, noone else can do this for any browser?"

    Please check www.teamspace.de for this functionality.

  2. Hi,

    I have tested teamspace and I like the nifty upload function. We will also add a multiple file upload functionality to Projectplace. However, I could not see how to drag and drop files within the actual teamspace itself, or to drag and drop files from teamspace to my computer.

    I also could not open my files (open office) without first downloading them to my computer? And there was no integrated lock but a manual one, the same as working in Projectplace without the Plug-in.

  3. I think that the plug-in for Mac/Safari support is not needed if you instead could arrange the drag and drop via html 5.

  4. ExtJS supports drag and drop via its javascript framework. Also supports browsers since beginning of 2000 (IE6). Might be a good idea to use their framework...?!