New Tasktop Dev Features To Improve Your Software Development Lifecycle

Trevor BrunerPosted by

Pasted image at 2016_04_27 01_55 PM

We’re excited to announce our latest rollout of Tasktop Dev. You may notice a few changes. While we’re still keeping two versions of Dev (Pro and Enterprise editions), we’ve streamlined our Dev Pro offering.

First, you’ll see that the price has dropped from $99/year to just $24/year. That’s only $2 per month. We wanted to make this more affordable for all the individual developers out there who want to be able to pull their tasks from JIRA or Bugzilla into their Eclipse IDE. We’ve streamlined Tasktop Dev to ensure it has the features you care about. Additionally, once Atlassian discontinued support for their Eclipse plug in, Tasktop Dev is now the only place you can get a supported JIRA connector. We’re very excited to be able to provide this to you. This is the same JIRA connector that we have in Tasktop Sync, so you know it’s going to be supported for a long time to come.

This release of Tasktop Dev is a great opportunity to give a bit of history on Tasktop and tell you why Tasktop Dev is more important to our customers than ever before. I’ll give away the ending… Tasktop Dev solves our customer’s “First Mile” problem. What’s the First Mile problem? Keep reading to find out.

Back in the beginning, our founder Mik Kersten created Mylyn. His goal was to reduce the productivity costs associated with context switching. Mylyn allowed you to connect your Eclipse environment to other task management tools and created a task-focused working environment. When you activated a Task, Mylyn remembered all the files you were working on. Then later, when you came back to your Task, Mylyn would reopen all the files you previously had open. You didn’t have to remember where you left off. It also let you update any task you were working on. You could read and write to tasks without ever leaving your IDE. Again, reducing context switching. Tasktop was founded on this concept of minimizing distractions so we commercialized Mylyn and distributed it as our proprietary Tasktop Dev product.

Dev_1Then we realized that if a Tasktop Dev user could read and write to Tool A and also read and write to Tool B, why couldn’t we get the user out of the middle and let Tool A read and write to Tool B? We could use this technology to synchronize artifacts across systems, giving stakeholders the ability to share the most up-to-date information with each other. This further reduced distractions by eliminating one source of the corporate information scavenger hunt we all face. This idea grew into Tasktop Sync and has been wildly successful.

After years of connecting various tools, we realized that customers want to report on their entire lifecycle. They want to know about all the defects across all their tools. They wanted to create reports on their user stories, requirements, tests, etc. They had the analytics tools at their disposal (Tableau, Domo, etc), but couldn’t get the information to the tools. They were trying to build one-off tools to dump their data into their analytics tools, but were encountering the same problems they had when they were building point-to-point integrations. They needed to normalize their data. They needed to stay current with their various tools. They needed a solution for their Last Mile problem. This solution became Tasktop Data. Tasktop Data allows customers to collect data on the activities across their lifecycle in their own database for reporting purposes. Tasktop is in a unique position to help since we already knew how to talk to our customer’s tools.
We recently introduced the Gateway Add-On for Tasktop Sync. Gateway Add-On lets you to bring DevOps, version control and automation tools into your integrated lifecycle. For example, when I commit code to my Git repository, a link to that Git change set will automatically be written to the task I was working on in planning tools like JIRA. That means that on every one of my tasks, I can see exactly the pieces of code that were changed. That’s pretty powerful. But to make this happen, the task ID and URL need to be added to the Git commit message. This auto-fill of your commit messages is one of the core features of Tasktop Dev. So now, not only does the commit know about the task, but the task knows about the commit.

So Tasktop Data is the Last Mile, Tasktop Sync is the interstate highway connecting all their tools, but in order to have full lifecycle traceability you need something else. You need to connect your code to your tasks. Only then can you report on tasks (via Tasktop Data) that are synchronized between tools (via Tasktop Sync) and know what code those tasks affect (via Tasktop Dev and Gateway Add-On).

So you see, it comes full circle.

Tastkop Dev is the First Mile. It connects the code to the tasks. Gateway Add-On connects the tasks to the code (you want to trace both directions, right?). Tasktop Sync is the highway connecting all your ALM, PPM and QA tools and Tasktop Data is the Last Mile supplying your information to your analytics tools.

Tasktop Dev is more important than ever. It’s the First Mile in your journey to a fully automated view into your development lifecycle. You want to see what tasks and stories were delivered in a given build? You need Dev, Gateway, Sync, and Data. You want to see full traceability from Requirements to Tests to code, and to see what code changes are in production? You need Dev, Gateway, Sync and Data.

Throughout our company evolution, one thing has stayed constant.. we want you to be able to work in the tool that make the most sense for you. This means that developers can live their life in in their IDE using Tasktop Dev. BAs and testers can stay in their respective requirement management and quality management tools. And managers can have an executive dashboard to see a global view of their development lifecycle.

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