Elsewhere in my life, there’s mainly music - you can find out more about that at paulroub.com.
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So far, most of the discussions about Veracity have been about its DVCS abilities. I thought I’d talk a bit about the other side of Veracity, the bug/work tracking side, from the users’ point of view. I’ll start with the Activity Stream.
One choice we made for the initial releases was to forego email notifications as a means of alerting users to new work, updated bug reports, code changes, and so on. There were a number of reasons for this:
Of course, Veracity has really nice search and filter tools, allowing you to see bugs assigned to you; bugs you need to verify; what’s up for you in the next sprint; any bug mentioning “snickers” or stamped with “SOOPER URGENT”; etc.
But we also wanted to give you a view of what’s going on with your project in a more ambient way, so we added the Activity Stream. Every 30 seconds, if anything new of interest has happened in your repository, it quietly updates to let you know.
The activity stream shows you the most-recent 25 things you might care about. In particular, you’ll see:
Here’s a shot of the last few items in email@example.com’s activity stream:
The goal of the activity stream is to be useful, as opposed to complete. If you look at the activity stream side-by-side with our version control history graph, you’ll notice that rev #7 isn’t listed, even though it’s the latest. Why not? Its comment was simply “merge”. That’s not terribly interesting, you probably don’t care, so we hide it. We also hide no-op work item updates, successful builds (our continuous integration setup spins those out constantly, and they’d push the more-urgent stuff off screen), etc.
You can also narrow down the work items shown in the stream to just those that you’re involved with. By checking “my updates only”:
you’ll only see work items where your username is either the Reporter, Assignee, or Verifier, or where the item has been stamped with your username.
You’ll still see all commits, since other people’s commits are certainly likely to be of interest to you. You’ll also still see your own commits, which are not likely to surprise you, so that you can drag them around.
Veracity work items can be related to each other (this depends on that, this is a duplicate of the other, etc.). They can also be associated with version control commits – check in some changes, mark the relevant bug.
All that is nicely searchable in the work item edit page, but when you want to associate with another recent bug, or with a recent commit, why type anything? You’re already looking at that item in the stream, so just drag it into the appropriate slot and Save.
For several of us on the Veracity team, the first we hear of a newly-assigned or reopened bug is when it shows up in our feed reader of choice. The Veracity activity streams for any repository (either the all-inclusive or my-updates-only version) are also served as Atom feeds. The link for whichever version of the stream you’re viewing is always available via the feed icon at the bottom of the stream:
Here’s this dev’s full-blown stream:
and his mine-mine-mine stream:
Note that the titles are live links to the relevant Veracity work item, changeset detail, etc. pages.
As ever, feedback, questions, and suggestions are very much welcome on the Veracity users mailing list. Drop in.
We’ll also have a booth at OSCON again this July, so stop by, say “hi”, kick the tires, argue about rebase…
I think, with this post, I’ll have reached a new peak in my quest to share scripts that almost no one else will use. What is the overlap between “users of the Todo.txt Touch Android app” and “pre-release Veracity users”? The odds of that being “just me” are favorable. I expect those odds to change. In the meantime, I’ve already written the script; it would be rude not to share.
Veracity, if you’ve been paying attention, is Sourcegear’s upcoming Distributed Version Control / Bug Tracking / more system with an open sourced core. The main reason this blog’s been so dead? “Busy. Busy coding. Can’t talk right now.” That kinda thing.
todo.txt is Gina Trapani’s script/app that aims to make simple todo.txt files more useful and mobile, while still maintaining the simplicity we love. I’m a fan and a daily user of the command-line script and the Android app.
One thing Veracity doesn’t have, as yet, is a mobile interface. Since all the boxes on which I deal with Veracity are behind firewalls, I couldn’t use one right now, anyway. But that doesn’t stop me from realizing I need to log myself a task or two when I’m out and away from the keyboard. What to do?
I add a new item in the todo.txt app, like so:
See how I set a “context” of @veracity? That will matter later. If I wished, I could also add tags (things prefixed by “+” in todo.txt’s world), and set a priority from (A) to (E). Here’s a few of those, after the auto-sync:
I have a cron job that runs every 20 minutes, along the lines of:
0,20,40 * * * * vscript todo2vv.js /path/of/todo.txt firstname.lastname@example.org veracity-pr
Which tells the the todo2vv.js script (download) to look in todo.txt for any @veracity items, mark them done in the todo.txt list, and add them instead to my Veracity todo list in the veracity-pr repository. Here they are after import:
And filtered by priority:
All have been assigned to our current milestone-in-progress (Sprint 18, the Veracity team being a scrummy one), stamped “todo” (along with any of those todo.txt tags), and given priorities matching any seen in the text file.
The script is fairly simple; it spends more time parsing todo.txt and managing files than creating the actual work items. Feedback, questions, comments are most welcome; at the moment, they’re probably best asked on the veracity-users mailing list.
Back to work. Gotta change the activity stream sorting.
Upside: we had a great time at PDC, got to talk to tons of users and potential users, and went through all of our T-Shirts and CDs very quickly.
Downside: if you dropped by the booth after Tuesday, you might be without a CD.
Hot on the heels of SourceOffSite 5.0’s release, SoS 5.0.1 is out with some important bug fixes. The SoS dev and QA team put a lot of effort into getting a solid, well-tested release out in a very short time span. Nice work.
Key changes in this release:
If you’re a SourceOffSite user and haven’t yet seen SoS 5… you really, really should. Looks, features, performance — this is a huge upgrade.
Why are we doing another update of SoS? Shouldn’t everybody just get away from SourceSafe and into Vault or Fortress? In a perfect world, sure.
But we know a lot of you are still living with SourceSafe, now and in the forseeable future, for all the usual reasons – time, budget, inertia, IT priorities that outrank your SCC provider. And we feel for you, and want to continue helping via SoS.
And now, we can help even more.
A folder-spanning “pending changes” window, so you don’t forget to check in one of the 50 file in your latest web update? Got that.
Multiple tabs, allowing you to keep tabs on your searches, your history, and everything else in your multitasking day? That too.
Performance? Yep. Stability? Sure. Modern UI? Gotcha.