So what if Trello met Github Issues and decided to have a child? It would most likely be Waffle.io. And you know what, I love it and I think you might too.
When I worked at Fubra, myself and few others decided to use Github Issue for our project management. Alice covers this in a blog post at Furba.com that the newer teams use in their iteration. It was an elegant solution using a tool we used already utilised. The only this was on boarding the none-coders of the group. They were open to the solution as they helped conclude this was the right option.
After a few months, we had a fluid workflow. Our digital solution was Github Issues with a physical Kanban board just to ease the process.
Life was good.
Well, it was then, but the more I used this process I realised it wasn’t that efficient. Rather it could be more efficient. I always had the idea to create an app that would mix a Kanban board with Github Issues. When I first posted about this idea, I got a bit of resistance stating that it wasn’t the correct use of Github. I kind of discarded the project and never pushed forwards.
I recently thought about the idea again and was about to start the project when I came across Waffle.io.
I mean, bloody hell! These people had the same idea as me and even implemented it the exact way I would have. Great minds think alike and all that.Looking at Twitter a few people are saying they thought the same thing as well, so a much-needed product I say well done and I bloody love it!
What Does Waffle.io Provide
It’s a nice and simple app; connect your Github account to Waffle.io and you have access to all your repositories. Add a project using new or existing repo (private or public) you have a new Kanban board. All your open issues get placed in the Backlog whilst they await being placed in a column. You can drag and drop an issue into one of the columns and a label is added (exactly like one in Github). This means that if you are in either Github Issues or Waffle.io, you status is visible and sortable. It works vice-versa, you can view your labels in Waffle.io. The only drawback is I don’t think you can sort by them at the moment.
- It uses the Github Issues comments as well so you can add or view comments on either system. Though, you can’t drag-and-drop files into the text editor like you can on Github Issues. A minor issue if you ask me!
- There is also the ability to add a size in the form of a traditional Scrum hourly number, another handy feature. I would like the option to change this to your own system, I know a few people use the tee-shirt analogy.
- You can edit the Kanban, changing titles and adding columns to match your project life cycle. Good as it is missing a few stages I larger organisations would like, or my key column, “feedback”.
Waffle.io is a handy tool, and it doesn’t need full commitment from a whole team. Long as your status get stored in Github Issues, you can choose to use Waffle.io or completely ignore it. As it uses existing features found on Github, not adding; it’s a two way process. The team agrees to use labels such as “In-Progress” or “Ready” and you are good to go. It makes it easier for none-coders to get into the mindset of using it by making it like Trello.
For any team or lone developer, I recommend giving Waffle.io a try. Better yet, even if you are in a private repository or public, it’s free in “the cloud”.