Twproject philosophy: a short story

BrothersThere were once two brothers and a sister, and they were managers at three companies.

The first brother was called Micro Manager, and he picked the most complex and integrated management tools, which were entrenched in the technical staff IDEs and into all their network activity, so that not a single line of code could be written without it being carefully logged. Not an hour could pass without justifying time spent; not a file could be opened without explaining why. Not a project could be created without designing a 100 leafed Gantt. And after a week everybody hated the system, and then they hated Micro Manager, and everybody was unhappy.

The second brother was called Over Simplify, and he didn’t want any kind of management apart from to-do lists. And everybody just had to-do lists, and for the first week everybody was happy. Then many started having long to-do lists, and some started worshipping them, and instead of working, they were compiling longer and longer personal to-do list. And every list was different from any other, and nobody knew what, when, how, and why, and everything was in a mess. And then they hated Over Simplify, and everybody was unhappy.

Their sister was called Reasonable Modesty, and she had minimal goals, had always clear that what matters is how people work and interact, and that software is always secondary, and should be flexible, not do too much, and not get in the way. She started evaluating Twproject.

Teamwork 4.0 released

Teamwork 4 about page
Teamwork's 4 "about" popup.

Download Teamwork 4. Today, 30th of January, 2009, Teamwork 4 is available for download. Get it here:

In the same page you can generate a 30 days evaluation license. The multi-platform installer includes an upgrader from version 3; you can buy both new and upgrade licenses here:

The base cost is 90 Euro per non-expiring license.

(If you live in a country where the currency is now particularly weak with respect to the Euro (e.g. Brazil), apply for a discount here. There are free licenses for blogger / journalist reviewers, as usual.)

See the introductory video and download the user guide here:

What we achieved. Producing Teamwork 4 was really difficult, because we had several aims that we wanted to pursue with this release:

  • get more integration between the different sections of Teamwork
  • expand project management functionality with resource management and business processes
  • create a “Teamwork talks” set of functionalities, so that Teamwork would natively interact with the various services which now are widely used to track one’s activity, from Google apps, to Twitter and Subversion
  • deeply revise the user interface, by:
    • keeping “embracing the web”, but empowering the basic url request – page display cycle with dynamical web parts that allow in place and multi-line editing
    • make it easier to reach information, through silently smart search functions and empowered dashboards  (see the future blog post on group ranking)

The last point was particularly intense, as we had to “absorb” the fact that the web itself is a source of user interface standards, and it has stopped trying to imitate other platforms.

User requests. Many of the changes and improvements came from recurring user requests: have an extended and printable user guide, interface translation in German and Spanish, in place task tree edit, Subversion integration, and many others. So post your requests on our feedback service, and you’ll see them realized with a little patience.

Features of version 4. How can a short blog post summarize Teamwork release 4? There is just too much, both conceptually and functionally. There is only one way to get to know Teamwork 4: see the intro video, download and install the application, give it a try, maybe have a look at the new user guide to get more in depth on the subjects that most interest you.

A very synthetic way of telling what’s new in version 4 is by using simply a tag cloud of the user guide contents:

Tag cloud of Teamwork 4 user guide
Tag cloud of Teamwork 4 user guide

Thanks. The team that produced Teamwork 4 is here:

Thanks to all users of version 3 that provided feedback and special thanks to beta testers and translators. Have a good evaluation!