Drupal Feeds

Container

Latest Drupal Modules - Wed, 2017-08-23 00:51

Are you missing the Symfony's dependency injection container? This is what you're looking for!

Usage

To start using this package you must install it via Composer. Thereafter add the following lines to the *.info file of the module which is going to populate dependencies to the container:

Categories: Straight From Drupal

Dries Buytaert: Reservoir, a simple way to decouple Drupal

Planet Drupal - Tue, 2017-08-22 20:52

Decoupled Drupal seems to be taking the world by storm. I'm currently in Sydney, and everyone I talked to so far, including the attendees at the Sydney Drupal User Group, is looking into decoupled Drupal. Digital agencies are experimenting with it on more projects, and there is even a new Decoupled Dev Days conference dedicated to the topic.

Roughly eight months ago, we asked ourselves in Acquia's Office of the CTO whether we could create a "headless" version of Drupal, optimized for integration with a variety of applications, channels and touchpoints. Such a version could help us build bridges with other developer communities working with different frameworks and programming languages, and the JavaScript community in particular.

I've been too busy with the transition at Acquia to blog about it in real time, but a few months ago, we released Reservoir. It's a Drupal-based content repository with all the necessary web service APIs needed to build decoupled front-end applications, be it a React application, an Ember front end, a native application, an augmented reality application, a Java or .NET application, or something completely different. You can even front-end it with a PHP application, something I hope to experiment with on my blog.

API-first distributions for Drupal like Reservoir and Contenta are a relatively new phenomenon but seem to be taking off rapidly. It's no surprise because an API-first approach is critical in a world where you have to operate agnostically across any channel and any form factor. I'm convinced that an API-first approach will be a critical addition to Drupal's future and could see a distribution like Reservoir or Contenta evolve to become a third installation profile for Drupal core (not formally decided).

Decoupled Drupal for both editors and developers Reservoir welcome screenThe welcome screen after installing Reservoir.

The reason decoupled Drupal is taking off is that organizations are now grappling with a multitude of channels, including mobile applications, single-page JavaScript applications, IoT applications, digital signage, and content driven by augmented and virtual reality. Increasingly, organizations need a single place to house content.

What you want is an easy but powerful way for your editorial team to create and manage content, including administering advanced content models, content versioning, integrating media assets, translations, and more. All of that should be made easy through a great UI without having to involve a developer. This, incidentally, is aligned with Drupal 8's roadmap, in which we are focused on media management, workflows, layouts, and usability improvements through our outside-in work.

At the same time, you want to enable your developers to easily deliver that content to different devices, channels, and platforms. This means that the content needs to be available through APIs. This, too, is aligned with Drupal 8's roadmap, where we are focused on web services capabilities. Through Drupal's web service APIs, developers can build freely in different front-end technologies, such as Angular, React, Ember, and Swift, as well as Java and .NET. For developers, accomplishing this without the maintenance burden of a full Drupal site or the complexity of configuring standard Drupal to be decoupled is key.

API-first distributions like Reservoir keep Drupal's workflows and editorial UI intact but emphasize Drupal's web service APIs to return control to your developers. But with flexible content modeling and custom fields added to the equation, they also give more control over how editors can curate, combine, and remix content for different channels.

Success is getting to developer productivity faster Reservoir side by side previews of HMTL and JSON APIReservoir includes side-by-side previews of content in HTML and JSON API output.

The goal of a content repository should be to make it simple for developers to consume your content, including digital assets and translations, through a set of web service APIs. Success means that a developer can programmatically access your content within minutes.

Reservoir tries to achieve this in four ways:

  1. Easy on-boarding. Reservoir provides a welcome tour with helpful guidance to create and edit content, map out new content models, manage access control, and most importantly, introspect the web service APIs you'll need to consume to serve your applications.
  2. JSON API standard. Reservoir makes use of JSON API, which is the specification used for many APIs in JSON and adopted by the Ember and Ruby on Rails communities. Using a common standard means you can on-board your developers faster.
  3. Great API documentation. Reservoir ships with great API documentation thanks to OpenAPI, formerly known as Swagger, which is a specification for describing an API. If you're not happy with the default documentation, you can bring your own approach by using Reservoir's OpenAPI export.
  4. Libraries, references, and SDKs. With the Waterwheel ecosystem, a series of libraries, references, and SDKs for popular languages like JavaScript and Swift, developers can skip learning the APIs and go straight to integrating Drupal content in their applications.
Next steps for Reservoir Reservoir API documentation API documentation auto-generated based on the content model built in Reservoir.

We have a lot of great plans for Reservoir moving forward. Reservoir has several items on its short-term roadmap, including GraphQL support. As an emerging industry standard for data queries, GraphQL is a query language I first highlighted in my 2015 Barcelona keynote; see my blog post on the future of decoupled Drupal for a quick demo video.

We also plan to expand API coverage by adding the ability to programmatically manipulate users, tags, and other crucial content elements. This means that developers will be able to build richer integrations.

While content such as articles, pages, and other custom content types can be consumed and manipulated via web services today, upstream in Drupal core, API support for things like Drupal's blocks, menus, and layouts is in the works. The ability to influence more of Drupal's internals from external applications will open the door to better custom editorial interfaces.

Conclusion

I'm excited about Reservoir, not just because of the promise API-first distributions hold for the Drupal community, but because it helps us reach developers of different stripes who just need a simple content back end, all the while keeping all of the content editing functionality that editorial teams take for granted.

We've put the Reservoir codebase on GitHub, where you can open an issue, create a pull request, or contribute to documentation. Reservoir only advances when you give us feedback, so please let us know what you think!

Special thanks to Preston So for contributions to this blog post and to Ted Bowman, Wim Leers, and Matt Grill for feedback during the writing process.

Dries Buytaert: Reservoir, a simple way to decouple Drupal

Feeds from Drupal.org - Tue, 2017-08-22 20:52

Decoupled Drupal seems to be taking the world by storm. I'm currently in Sydney, and everyone I talked to so far, including the attendees at the Sydney Drupal User Group, is looking into decoupled Drupal. Digital agencies are experimenting with it on more projects, and there is even a new Decoupled Dev Days conference dedicated to the topic.

Roughly eight months ago, we asked ourselves in Acquia's Office of the CTO whether we could create a "headless" version of Drupal, optimized for integration with a variety of applications, channels and touchpoints. Such a version could help us build bridges with other developer communities working with different frameworks and programming languages, and the JavaScript community in particular.

I've been too busy with the transition at Acquia to blog about it in real time, but a few months ago, we released Reservoir. It's a Drupal-based content repository with all the necessary web service APIs needed to build decoupled front-end applications, be it a React application, an Ember front end, a native application, an augmented reality application, a Java or .NET application, or something completely different. You can even front-end it with a PHP application, something I hope to experiment with on my blog.

API-first distributions for Drupal like Reservoir and Contenta are a relatively new phenomenon but seem to be taking off rapidly. It's no surprise because an API-first approach is critical in a world where you have to operate agnostically across any channel and any form factor. I'm convinced that an API-first approach will be a critical addition to Drupal's future and could see a distribution like Reservoir or Contenta evolve to become a third installation profile for Drupal core (not formally decided).

Decoupled Drupal for both editors and developers Reservoir welcome screenThe welcome screen after installing Reservoir.

The reason decoupled Drupal is taking off is that organizations are now grappling with a multitude of channels, including mobile applications, single-page JavaScript applications, IoT applications, digital signage, and content driven by augmented and virtual reality. Increasingly, organizations need a single place to house content.

What you want is an easy but powerful way for your editorial team to create and manage content, including administering advanced content models, content versioning, integrating media assets, translations, and more. All of that should be made easy through a great UI without having to involve a developer. This, incidentally, is aligned with Drupal 8's roadmap, in which we are focused on media management, workflows, layouts, and usability improvements through our outside-in work.

At the same time, you want to enable your developers to easily deliver that content to different devices, channels, and platforms. This means that the content needs to be available through APIs. This, too, is aligned with Drupal 8's roadmap, where we are focused on web services capabilities. Through Drupal's web service APIs, developers can build freely in different front-end technologies, such as Angular, React, Ember, and Swift, as well as Java and .NET. For developers, accomplishing this without the maintenance burden of a full Drupal site or the complexity of configuring standard Drupal to be decoupled is key.

API-first distributions like Reservoir keep Drupal's workflows and editorial UI intact but emphasize Drupal's web service APIs to return control to your developers. But with flexible content modeling and custom fields added to the equation, they also give more control over how editors can curate, combine, and remix content for different channels.

Success is getting to developer productivity faster Reservoir side by side previews of HMTL and JSON APIReservoir includes side-by-side previews of content in HTML and JSON API output.

The goal of a content repository should be to make it simple for developers to consume your content, including digital assets and translations, through a set of web service APIs. Success means that a developer can programmatically access your content within minutes.

Reservoir tries to achieve this in four ways:

  1. Easy on-boarding. Reservoir provides a welcome tour with helpful guidance to create and edit content, map out new content models, manage access control, and most importantly, introspect the web service APIs you'll need to consume to serve your applications.
  2. JSON API standard. Reservoir makes use of JSON API, which is the specification used for many APIs in JSON and adopted by the Ember and Ruby on Rails communities. Using a common standard means you can on-board your developers faster.
  3. Great API documentation. Reservoir ships with great API documentation thanks to OpenAPI, formerly known as Swagger, which is a specification for describing an API. If you're not happy with the default documentation, you can bring your own approach by using Reservoir's OpenAPI export.
  4. Libraries, references, and SDKs. With the Waterwheel ecosystem, a series of libraries, references, and SDKs for popular languages like JavaScript and Swift, developers can skip learning the APIs and go straight to integrating Drupal content in their applications.
Next steps for Reservoir Reservoir API documentation API documentation auto-generated based on the content model built in Reservoir.

We have a lot of great plans for Reservoir moving forward. Reservoir has several items on its short-term roadmap, including GraphQL support. As an emerging industry standard for data queries, GraphQL is a query language I first highlighted in my 2015 Barcelona keynote; see my blog post on the future of decoupled Drupal for a quick demo video.

We also plan to expand API coverage by adding the ability to programmatically manipulate users, tags, and other crucial content elements. This means that developers will be able to build richer integrations.

While content such as articles, pages, and other custom content types can be consumed and manipulated via web services today, upstream in Drupal core, API support for things like Drupal's blocks, menus, and layouts is in the works. The ability to influence more of Drupal's internals from external applications will open the door to better custom editorial interfaces.

Conclusion

I'm excited about Reservoir, not just because of the promise API-first distributions hold for the Drupal community, but because it helps us reach developers of different stripes who just need a simple content back end, all the while keeping all of the content editing functionality that editorial teams take for granted.

We've put the Reservoir codebase on GitHub, where you can open an issue, create a pull request, or contribute to documentation. Reservoir only advances when you give us feedback, so please let us know what you think!

Special thanks to Preston So for contributions to this blog post and to Ted Bowman, Wim Leers, and Matt Grill for feedback during the writing process.

Categories: Straight From Drupal

Type Style

Latest Drupal Modules - Tue, 2017-08-22 20:47
Summary

Type Style allows users to associate colors and icons with their types. This is an important feature for building rich user interfaces, as content editors can quickly associate iconography and colors with a type. Currently Content types, Custom block types, (core) Media types, Taxonomy vocabularies, and File types are supported, but any custom or contributed type can be supported.

Categories: Straight From Drupal

Web3

Latest Drupal Modules - Tue, 2017-08-22 20:09

This will be the place where we enable Drupal for the next web - web 3.0.

Categories: Straight From Drupal

Account Activation Reminder

Latest Drupal Modules - Tue, 2017-08-22 17:46

A module allowing site administrators to resend activation emails from a selected user account page.

It also offers
- a custom email subject line
- a custom email body

This module is safe to use on a production site. Just be sure to only grant 'administer users' permission to developers.

Categories: Straight From Drupal

Group Role Delegation

Latest Drupal Modules - Tue, 2017-08-22 17:43

This module allows group owner to grant specific roles to users.
User can set expiry date for selected roles, expiry dates are controlled by cron job, so it automatically removes any expired roles.

Categories: Straight From Drupal

Workflows Assignee

Latest Drupal Modules - Tue, 2017-08-22 17:38
Categories: Straight From Drupal

DrupalEasy: How do I learn Drupal?  Let me count the ways.

Planet Drupal - Tue, 2017-08-22 16:22

Resources to learn Drupal are many and certainly vary in delivery, focus and quality. When you are trying to figure out the best way to train up, considerations like schedules, learning styles, and trainer reputations play pretty heavily. You also need to look at the program and compare it to what you already know, what you need to know, and what you should know to get into practice as quickly possible. One of the biggest obstacles is often finding, and then choosing the training program(s) that are right for you, and perhaps your team. But what if you didn’t have to choose?

Drupalize.Me and DrupalEasy are proud to announce that we are making it easier to get trained up in Drupal in a way that helps overcome challenges, meets needs, and addresses the different ways people learn. We are bundling our training programs and resources beginning with DrupalEasy’s Fall 2017 session of Drupal Career Online. The DCO will include access to all of the thousands of Drupalize.me tutorials during the 12-week course, and a deeply discounted subscription after graduation. Current Drupalize.Me subscribers will also receive a special Drupalize.Me tuition rate for this and any future sessions of the DCO.

Drupalize.Me’s Addison Berry came up with the partnership idea as a way to help the community grow by helping along the learning process of people who can more quickly become solid developers.  Addi says, “Any way we can make it easier, and better for people to get quality training to become developers is good for the community, and good for all of us.”  In addition to providing comprehensive Drupal training that focuses on best practices, Drupalize.Me and DrupalEasy share a love of building the Drupal talent base across the world.

Drupalize.Me provides a premium, membership-based training library of thousands of tutorials divided into specific pathways according to your learning goals.  It is trusted by users around the world, and backed by Lullabot, one of the top open source strategy, design, and development companies.

DrupalEasy has been offering instructor-led comprehensive Drupal career technical education (the first of its kind) programs since 2011, launching the 12-week, 132 hour Drupal Career Online program in 2015. The DCO ensures individuals and teams can rely on expert live instruction, office hours and mentorship, expansive learning resources, and a curriculum that thoughtfully stacks skills and emphasizes best practices to ensure graduates have the best possible foundation to become practicing Drupal developers.

The first session of Drupal Career Online that includes unfettered access to the Drupalize.Me’s tutorials in the Site Building, Theming and Development learning pathways begins October 2, with an application deadline of September 26th.  To learn more and get an idea of the DrupalEasy learning platform, sign up for one of two Taste of Drupal free information sessions in August and September or contact DrupalEasy.    



 

 

 

DrupalEasy: How do I learn Drupal?  Let me count the ways.

Feeds from Drupal.org - Tue, 2017-08-22 16:22

Resources to learn Drupal are many and certainly vary in delivery, focus and quality. When you are trying to figure out the best way to train up, considerations like schedules, learning styles, and trainer reputations play pretty heavily. You also need to look at the program and compare it to what you already know, what you need to know, and what you should know to get into practice as quickly possible. One of the biggest obstacles is often finding, and then choosing the training program(s) that are right for you, and perhaps your team. But what if you didn’t have to choose?

Drupalize.Me and DrupalEasy are proud to announce that we are making it easier to get trained up in Drupal in a way that helps overcome challenges, meets needs, and addresses the different ways people learn. We are bundling our training programs and resources beginning with DrupalEasy’s Fall 2017 session of Drupal Career Online. The DCO will include access to all of the thousands of Drupalize.me tutorials during the 12-week course, and a deeply discounted subscription after graduation. Current Drupalize.Me subscribers will also receive a special Drupalize.Me tuition rate for this and any future sessions of the DCO.

Drupalize.Me’s Addison Berry came up with the partnership idea as a way to help the community grow by helping along the learning process of people who can more quickly become solid developers.  Addi says, “Any way we can make it easier, and better for people to get quality training to become developers is good for the community, and good for all of us.”  In addition to providing comprehensive Drupal training that focuses on best practices, Drupalize.Me and DrupalEasy share a love of building the Drupal talent base across the world.

Drupalize.Me provides a premium, membership-based training library of thousands of tutorials divided into specific pathways according to your learning goals.  It is trusted by users around the world, and backed by Lullabot, one of the top open source strategy, design, and development companies.

DrupalEasy has been offering instructor-led comprehensive Drupal career technical education (the first of its kind) programs since 2011, launching the 12-week, 132 hour Drupal Career Online program in 2015. The DCO ensures individuals and teams can rely on expert live instruction, office hours and mentorship, expansive learning resources, and a curriculum that thoughtfully stacks skills and emphasizes best practices to ensure graduates have the best possible foundation to become practicing Drupal developers.

The first session of Drupal Career Online that includes unfettered access to the Drupalize.Me’s tutorials in the Site Building, Theming and Development learning pathways begins October 2, with an application deadline of September 26th.  To learn more and get an idea of the DrupalEasy learning platform, sign up for one of two Taste of Drupal free information sessions in August and September or contact DrupalEasy.    



 

 

 

Categories: Straight From Drupal

Drupal Modules: The One Percent: Drupal Modules: The One Percent — Views Parity Row (video tutorial)

Planet Drupal - Tue, 2017-08-22 14:55
Drupal Modules: The One Percent — Views Parity Row (video tutorial) Project page screenshot NonProfit Tue, 08/22/2017 - 09:55 Episode 32

Here is where we bring awareness to Drupal modules running on less than 1% of reporting sites. Today we'll look at Views Parity Row, a module which will allow the rows in your view to be rendered through different view modes.

Drupal Modules: The One Percent: Drupal Modules: The One Percent — Views Parity Row (video tutorial)

Feeds from Drupal.org - Tue, 2017-08-22 14:55
Drupal Modules: The One Percent — Views Parity Row (video tutorial) Project page screenshot NonProfit Tue, 08/22/2017 - 09:55 Episode 32

Here is where we bring awareness to Drupal modules running on less than 1% of reporting sites. Today we'll look at Views Parity Row, a module which will allow the rows in your view to be rendered through different view modes.

Categories: Straight From Drupal

Elasticsearch Connect

Latest Drupal Modules - Tue, 2017-08-22 13:54

Provides a set of tools to index your contents in a single Elasticsearch index.

Categories: Straight From Drupal

Commerce License Fix

Latest Drupal Modules - Tue, 2017-08-22 12:51

Websites using the Commerce License module lack a Rule to revoke the licenses from a user when the order gets cancelled. This is partially fixed with the patch provided by torgosPizza in #2470467: Rules actions for revoke/suspend.

Categories: Straight From Drupal

top 10 google news

Latest Drupal Modules - Tue, 2017-08-22 09:18

Top 10 Google News is a simple module to add a block to our Drupal site to display the latest Google News headlines with short description with image and link to the news page on sections you choose.

Configuration

1. configure the API key and version (at "admin/config/services/google_news").
2. After that you can put the block to any region on your page (using "admin/structure/block").

Categories: Straight From Drupal

Social Sharebar

Latest Drupal Modules - Tue, 2017-08-22 08:42
Categories: Straight From Drupal

Agiledrop.com Blog: AGILEDROP: Web Accessibility in Drupal 8 – part 1

Planet Drupal - Tue, 2017-08-22 07:19
At AGILEDROP, we like to share our knowledge and experience with others. Our development director Bostjan Kovac did that at DrupalHeart Camp Zagreb with his session Web Accessibility in Drupal 8. We will look at this session and we will present it in two parts. This is the first part. The inspiration for his session (and of course this blog post) came from the fact that web accessibility was a demand when Bostjan worked on a couple of projects. He also went to one of the similar sessions on Drupal Camp in Vienna 2015 and decided to take a closer look at it. Today Drupal websites sites have… READ MORE

Agiledrop.com Blog: AGILEDROP: Web Accessibility in Drupal 8 – part 1

Feeds from Drupal.org - Tue, 2017-08-22 07:19
At AGILEDROP, we like to share our knowledge and experience with others. Our development director Bostjan Kovac did that at DrupalHeart Camp Zagreb with his session Web Accessibility in Drupal 8. We will look at this session and we will present it in two parts. This is the first part. The inspiration for his session (and of course this blog post) came from the fact that web accessibility was a demand when Bostjan worked on a couple of projects. He also went to one of the similar sessions on Drupal Camp in Vienna 2015 and decided to take a closer look at it. Today Drupal websites sites have… READ MORE
Categories: Straight From Drupal

PreviousNext: Scrum Masters are only effective when they are co-located with their teams

Planet Drupal - Tue, 2017-08-22 04:18
Share:

Browsing through the interweb I happened across this bold statement a few weeks ago. A statement so bold, it inspired me to write a blog post in response.

by irma.kelly / 22 August 2017

Scrum Masters being co-located with their teams, sure it is the best and most favourable scenario for teams working on complex projects, but to go as far as to say that Scrum Masters are ONLY effective in this instance - nope. Sorry, I have to graciously disagree.

Obviously there are different challenges that come with facilitating Agile ceremonies and interacting with the team remotely as opposed to face-to-face. A completely different approach needs to be taken on my behalf to keep the team engine purring away.

Personally for me, the “different approach” I take with managing remote teams, as opposed to co-located teams is to ensure uber transparency and over-communication on my part in regards to the all of the work that the team currently have in-flight. On my part this includes:

  • Ensuring that work in flight includes “Acceptance Criteria” and a “Definition of Done” agreed to by both the team and the client. This ensures that both the client and the team have an agreed vision of the product we are building. More importantly, it removes the need to make assumptions about a solution on both sides

  • The use of an online and up-to-date Kanban board that both the client and the team can freely access

  • Complete honesty with the client and the team in regards to all aspects of the project. Especially during the trickier and stressful moments of project delivery. If something is starting to go pear shaped, call it out early - don’t hide it!​

There are a plethora of tools now available that help enable remote collaboration. I thought it might be worthwhile sharing some of the tools that the teams at PNX use to make remote collaboration simpler.

Slack / Go To Meetings / Google Hangouts

With a large percentage of our internal staff located across Australia, these are PNX’s go-to tools for remote collaboration. We utilise both GoToMeeting and Google Hangouts (depending on individual client preferences) as tools to enable our daily stand-ups with our clients. Daily stand-ups and the ability to quickly ask via a hangout or GoToMeeting has drastically reduced the amount of email correspondence between PNX and our clients. The result? A reduction in idle time, as questions can be answered relatively quickly instead of waiting for a reply via email.

Access to an online Kanban board

The ultimate in uber transparency. There is nothing more satisfying for an Agile Delivery Manager than to see tickets move to the right of the board. Likewise for our clients! Each ticket on the board details who the work is assigned to and the status of the task. At a glance, anyone with access to the project kanban board can see the status of work for a given sprint.

Google Sheets - My favourite go-to tool, when it comes to interactive Agile ceremonies

The most common question I’m asked about working with remote teams is “how do you facilitate an Agile ceremony like a Retrospective with a remote team?” My favourite go-to tool for this is Google Sheets. Before each retro, I spend a half hour putting the retro board together on a Sheet. I try and mix it up every retro as well, using different Retro techniques to keep things interesting.  I mark defined spaces on the sheet where comments are to go, and I share the sheet with the team. Facilitating the Retrospective via a video conference (if possible), I timebox the retro using a timer app shared on my desktop. The team then fill in the Google Sheet in real time. The virtual equivalent of walking up to a physical board, and placing a post-it up there! I have replaced all of the original text captured during the retro with lorem ipsum text. What's said in retro - stays in retro! We had a little fun with the below retro as you can see!

For sensitive conversations - A video conference (or the phone)

The tools above are handy for enabling remote collaboration but for sensitive conversations with a colleague or client in a remote location, a video conference (where you can see each other) is a must. Sensitive conversations are fraught with danger via chat or email and a neutral tone is difficult to convey when we’re in the thick of things. If a video conference is not possible, though, simply pick up the phone.

I’d love to hear about some of the tools you use with your team to enable remote working. What are your recommended tools of choice?

Tagged Remote Working Photo of irma.kelly

Posted by irma.kelly
Agile Delivery Manager

Dated 22 August 2017

Add new comment

PreviousNext: Scrum Masters are only effective when they are co-located with their teams

Feeds from Drupal.org - Tue, 2017-08-22 04:18
Share:

Browsing through the interweb I happened across this bold statement a few weeks ago. A statement so bold, it inspired me to write a blog post in response.

by irma.kelly / 22 August 2017

Scrum Masters being co-located with their teams, sure it is the best and most favourable scenario for teams working on complex projects, but to go as far as to say that Scrum Masters are ONLY effective in this instance - nope. Sorry, I have to graciously disagree.

Obviously there are different challenges that come with facilitating Agile ceremonies and interacting with the team remotely as opposed to face-to-face. A completely different approach needs to be taken on my behalf to keep the team engine purring away.

Personally for me, the “different approach” I take with managing remote teams, as opposed to co-located teams is to ensure uber transparency and over-communication on my part in regards to the all of the work that the team currently have in-flight. On my part this includes:

  • Ensuring that work in flight includes “Acceptance Criteria” and a “Definition of Done” agreed to by both the team and the client. This ensures that both the client and the team have an agreed vision of the product we are building. More importantly, it removes the need to make assumptions about a solution on both sides

  • The use of an online and up-to-date Kanban board that both the client and the team can freely access

  • Complete honesty with the client and the team in regards to all aspects of the project. Especially during the trickier and stressful moments of project delivery. If something is starting to go pear shaped, call it out early - don’t hide it!​

There are a plethora of tools now available that help enable remote collaboration. I thought it might be worthwhile sharing some of the tools that the teams at PNX use to make remote collaboration simpler.

Slack / Go To Meetings / Google Hangouts

With a large percentage of our internal staff located across Australia, these are PNX’s go-to tools for remote collaboration. We utilise both GoToMeeting and Google Hangouts (depending on individual client preferences) as tools to enable our daily stand-ups with our clients. Daily stand-ups and the ability to quickly ask via a hangout or GoToMeeting has drastically reduced the amount of email correspondence between PNX and our clients. The result? A reduction in idle time, as questions can be answered relatively quickly instead of waiting for a reply via email.

Access to an online Kanban board

The ultimate in uber transparency. There is nothing more satisfying for an Agile Delivery Manager than to see tickets move to the right of the board. Likewise for our clients! Each ticket on the board details who the work is assigned to and the status of the task. At a glance, anyone with access to the project kanban board can see the status of work for a given sprint.

Google Sheets - My favourite go-to tool, when it comes to interactive Agile ceremonies

The most common question I’m asked about working with remote teams is “how do you facilitate an Agile ceremony like a Retrospective with a remote team?” My favourite go-to tool for this is Google Sheets. Before each retro, I spend a half hour putting the retro board together on a Sheet. I try and mix it up every retro as well, using different Retro techniques to keep things interesting.  I mark defined spaces on the sheet where comments are to go, and I share the sheet with the team. Facilitating the Retrospective via a video conference (if possible), I timebox the retro using a timer app shared on my desktop. The team then fill in the Google Sheet in real time. The virtual equivalent of walking up to a physical board, and placing a post-it up there! I have replaced all of the original text captured during the retro with lorem ipsum text. What's said in retro - stays in retro! We had a little fun with the below retro as you can see!

For sensitive conversations - A video conference (or the phone)

The tools above are handy for enabling remote collaboration but for sensitive conversations with a colleague or client in a remote location, a video conference (where you can see each other) is a must. Sensitive conversations are fraught with danger via chat or email and a neutral tone is difficult to convey when we’re in the thick of things. If a video conference is not possible, though, simply pick up the phone.

I’d love to hear about some of the tools you use with your team to enable remote working. What are your recommended tools of choice?

Tagged Remote Working Photo of irma.kelly

Posted by irma.kelly
Agile Delivery Manager

Dated 22 August 2017

Add new comment
Categories: Straight From Drupal

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