Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Harvest & SuprGlu

There's a little application I really don't use that much, SuprGlu. It's an aggregator for all of my online life, and its kind of a blog/flickr/last.fm mashup. I love it, but I neglect it.
I've done the exact same thing with my blog in sticking oodles of tat onto it, SuprGlu should be exactly my kind of thing. For some reason I can't explain, it's not - perhaps because I already have a blog with oodles of tat all over it.

I'm not blogging about SuprGlu.

I'm blogging about another application from the people who made SuprGlu. Harvest looks great, from the very first page on in.

I didn't look much past the first page however.

The reason is because I'm familiar with basecamp; and in my mind I have in broad strokes lumped basecamp and Harvest together - no doubt under the surface they are as different as cats and dogs, but they look the same. I have no easy way to tell what makes Harvest different (though, of course, after the first few pages I begin to get the idea that it is a wildly different beast).

As a developer, rather than any other kind of project worker, I have abandoned tools like basecamp in favour of trac - because it offers such tight integration with source code control, issue tracking, and a wiki. I'm a very hard user to convince that Harvest is infact useful. Much of my project management is done adhoc - I abhor timesheets. Our work accounting department tried to make us do it with dead trees, and it just didn't work. I get shudders when our IT manager speaks of man-hours (they don't exist!) with that look in his eyes. If I was so busy I needed to divide my time between 6 clients and 27 projects, I'm not really sure I would have the time to micromanage and track my time.
Infact, I'd really prefer it if my email client could help manage this workload. Or my calendaring application. Anything that just half does the recording of important times and whatnot all by itself.

I got as far as starting a new project. I put in the name. There's a physical address - oops, I've been editing a client's details. I go to edit the internal project - I find I want to be able to associate URLs with it. Life would be great to be able to simply invite a new contractor to work with me and have them able to get going with trac, svn, our live servers, our production servers, etc - all of these available in link form.
There's no real facility for it.
Bugger.

That's the dealbreaker for me - this doesn't actually help me get things done :(

On the plus side, setup was flawless for this application - if you ever want an example of how to install an applicaton, this is how it should be done.

It's a wonderful piece of software, but it's utterly useless for me. Give it a crack and let me know if it's more useful for you...
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