A followup to DeanGoodmanson's idea of adding "project management" functionality to ZWiki, eg for tracking future zwiki development work.

This page is based on an article of Joel "On Software" Spolsky. He describes a simple spreadsheet system project management system matched ZwikiIssueTracker's simplicity and can be used to plan software. It looks like this:

Excel schedule

Let's practice what we preach for ZWiki:
(TBD=To Be Defined/Determined/Discussed/Done)

Mockups

ZwikiContributorsFeatureTaskPriorityOrig EstCur EstElapsedRemain Remarks
DeanGoodmanson, PieterB, FlorianKonnertzUse Zwiki for simple project management
  • Discuss tasks ;)
  • Prototype Detail/Edit page, Summary page (this, and FilterRoadMap? page.
  • Create prototype in raw HTML
  • Create prototype as extension to ZwikiIssueTracker
  • ...
Low TBD TBD TBD TBD  
PieterBWikiMail: create ZwikiFrontend?
  • Check for e-mail message size and bounce large messages
  • Add icon, filename and link to file to the Zwiki automagically
  • Make uploading to zope available to Pyton 1.5.2
  • ...
Low TBD TBD TBD TBD  
PieterBProposalGeneralDiscussionNG
Low TBD TBD TBD TBD  

Individual Issue Page mock-up:

Feature

Priority

Orig Est

Cur Est

Elapsed

Remain

Feature

Priority

##

##

##

##

Tasks

Do This

Do that

(Note: Keeping tasks freeform, not contrained to a field, might be easier..)

Remarks

There's standard_zwik_footer implications

(Note: I think these are implementation remarks...need to double check original intention. I think it's best to seperate these (short items, due to listing in query) from customer/outside comments, which, when necesary, would be interpreted and summarized here.)


Comments

JohnDoe here, I've got a customer who could really use this! Could you get a sponsorship cost and date committment to get this by a certain date? Are there any other dependancies, risks?

(end of mock-up)


Discussion

2002/10/16 22:25 GMT (via web):
I created a second Javascript/HTML mockup for the ZwikiAndProjectManagement. Please have a look at http://gewis.nl/~pieterb/zwiki/pm.html (only tested on Internet Explorer yet).

-- PieterB

SimonMichael, 2002/10/18 22:37 GMT (via web):
Hi Pieter - I like that article (excluding the silly mozilla comments) and I'm very interested in experiments like this one. Currently I use local plaintext outlines and zwiki tracker most. Cf some other todo lists at ZwikiDevelopment?. A lot of the things I've tried tend to become stale or unwieldy as they grow. Your javascript mockup looks nifty in phoenix (mozilla), except I think some fields (hours ?) may not be displaying. Go go go! :)

WB
I'd like Elapsed to be the sum of a list so I can see in detail who spent ours on it. -- WimBekker

DeanGoodmanson, 2002/10/21 21:49 GMT (via web):
Questions:

a. Should the Task field be a. Wiki'able (wiki links, STX, etc.) or just plain text

b. Should the Task field be a searchable item in a whole-wiki search?

Originally I had the inclination that it be a delimited portion of a page, but that's more error prone than simply a large text field.

anon
My answers to Deans quetstions:

a) Two ideas for storing the tasks:

  1. (structured)text-field. For example in Latex table format

    Task1 & OrigEst1 & CurEst1 & Elapsed1
    Task2 & OrigEst2 & CurEst2 & Elapsed2
    

  2. Create tasks as "sub-issues" (e.g. IssueNo123?_1) and use the textfield of those Issues. In that way, other meta-data can also be assigned to tasks.

b) Yes!

-- PieterB

DeanGoodmanson, 2002/10/22 14:15 GMT (via web):
I'm currently intrigued by Scrum, which looks like it may work with this implementation. I think sprint tasks could be marked with a badge. http://www.mountaingoatsoftware.com/scrum/index.html

DeanGoodmanson, 2002/10/28 22:49 GMT (via web):
Thought of the day.. (From c.l.py martin v. l.'s sig.)

I have a feeling that any simple problem can be made arbitrarily difficult by imposing a suitably heavy administrative process around the development.
Joe Armstrong, comp.lang.functional

FlorianKonnertz, 2002/11/12 22:50 GMT (via web):
Just want to drop a note about my work on ZwikiForProjectManagement?. In the moment i refine my PersonalTaskManagement?: create nice linked TodoLists? in text+link rendered mode and linked Protocols about my work. (see NooWiki:FloTodoLists and NooWiki:FloWorkProtocol ) - Also i experiment with SubWikis?, hopefully i get the SubWiki configuration asap so instead of using "Flo...." page names i can use "MyTodoLists?" in the FloK SubWiki. Then it is possible for each user to create his own SubWiki and host his TodoLists? there. Then in the main wiki there could be some general ProjectManagement? pages which put their content via dtml from the personal pages together. - It is a little rudimentary, so let's wait for the great ideas.... !! pages moved to subwiki NooWiki:FloWiki. Search for them there. - FloK,01-16

DeanGoodmanson, 2002/11/15 07:17 GMT (via web):
Did major housecleaning here.

I sat at the Tracker.py code, intending to crank out a Roadmap.py equivilent, and came up short.

Each task is rolled into a feature. Problem: Features are comparable to categories, but DYNAMIC. Assumption: Task is the smallest unit. A feature is comprised of one or more tasks.

We'll want user discussion around the feature, implementation discussion around the tasks. How do we accomplish this? Keep the feature discussion in General or the larger topic area Discussion pages?

Is it an issue if each task has a redundant text field to associate it with a feature?

Next issue: Priority. Personally, I don't like the Priority by # system. I'd prefer a text system such as the tracker...nobody remembers what the #'s mean, and we don't need to search by #, and even so, we can prefix the description wit a number.

Finally, I prefer to manage tasks by iteration/milestone, etc. I'd like to build this in as a propety, even if it has only a couple of values. Current, Next, Future.

Realistically, unless a veteran Zopista steps in, I can only scrap together something that looks amazingly close to the Tracker. Should I bother? Or wait for the ZWikiTrackerRefactoring? .

In all honesty, I'm mostly tempted to try to attempt a Scrum implementation rather than Joel's, as it's got concrete implementation details and measurable results. Easier for me to understand (than my own made up system), sellable to mgt. :} Harder to implement than a paired down Joel implementation that may have less features than the Spreadsheet but discussable/subscribable tasks.

On my current project communication/knowlege management is more of a struggle than task management, so I'm also more pulled towards SubWiki and the BloggingDiscussion .

DeanGoodmanson, 2002/11/17 06:20 GMT (via web):
ZwikiRecordBook

I'm giving up on specifically implementing Joel's spreadsheet for a more general approach, then a specific implementation. Details at ZwikiRecordBook

BillSeitz, 2002/11/25 13:54 GMT (via web):
I'm interested in tweaking ZwikiIssueTracker for ProjectManagement? use as well. My interests are defined in WebSeitzWiki:ProjectFlux and WebSeitzWiki:CollaborationWare.

I'm playing with ZwikiIssueTracker on my private machine at the moment for this. My focus is on (a) adding an assigned-to property and (b) using Zwiki's natural hierarchy to map to a hierarchy of tasks.

Because one's taste in ProjectManagementSoftware? design is largely determined by the environment you're working in. For me, that involves multiple projects/activities, too much personal multi-tasking, constantly changing priorities, and unknown task estimates. Thus my software focus in on having individuals add their own task detail to their hierarchy, and making it easy to shift priorities from one "project" to another. The fact that different people deal with environments with different parameters (Joel's needs are clearly very different) make a single shared tracking codebase a challenge.

TedLongstaffe 2003/01/07 20:45 PST (via web)
I have created a mockup similar to that of PieterB except that I started with the idea that I wanted to enable subtasks from the outset. The current version at http://www.geocities.com/longted/zwikinav0.htm lets the user change existing features/tasks and by clicking on the + or - links, you can show or hide the various levels of subtasks. Obviously this version would need lots of further work to allow insertion/deletion of tasks/subtasks. Also, and very importantly, how can WikiName links and other wiki markup be used with a Javascripted solution?

TedLongstaffe, 2003/01/07 20:45 PST (via web)
You may encounter errors when using the test code listed above. I think this is because Geocities adds some HTML that does not agree with my Javascript. Hopefully, you can just "ignore" the errors and the code should work. In IE6, when it asks if I want to debug (twice) I just say no and then it loads fine. I guess I need to find a better site to host my code!

FlorianKonnertz, 2003/01/16 16:02 GMT (via web):
Hi Ted, how can i use your zwikinav code? The JavaScript code goes into the header, so do i have to put it on a normal wikipage or is it about integrating only the JavaScript code into a new customized header?

TedLongstaffe, 2003/01/17 01:07 GMT (via web):
Hi Florian. Apparently Zwiki disables Javascript so unless you were to override the disabling code, this won't help. Also, the functionality is very limited - it only shows the data that it is initialized with, you cannot insert, delete, move entries and I have no idea how the data would be saved. It was really more about testing an idea. At this point I have abandoned the code for now and am thinking about how to do something at the server side using DTML or Python or some combination (like ZwikiIssueTracker). Yesterday, I got my own Zwiki running on my home PC under Windows XP. Bye for now.

PieterB, 2003/01/21 19:44 GMT (via web):
Maybe MozTop? and/or Mozilla's XUL (XML UI Language) might be usefull for something like this.

FlorianKonnertz, 2003/02/06 08:05 GMT
Hi! RFC: who wants to have an extended ZwikiIssueTracker? And which fields and properties are needed? PieterB, DeanG? Do you think it's useful to create a new page type based on the current tracker type or do a new approach?

See also Scrum --PieterB, 2003/04/18 14:51 GMT
Dean created a ZwikiScrumDiscussion page. I'll add some comments over there.

article yet related article link --2003/05/27 14:48 GMT
http://www.rolemodelsoftware.com/moreAboutUs/publications/autoTracker.php