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Hello all. We've been very busy in the last couple of weeks, releasing our first public beta of Mockups for FogBugz and opening up the hosted app's private beta to a few selected "friends and family" members (more on both soon).
Even with all that, we were able to make some improvements here and there which we hope you'll like.
The biggest change is the way the Mockups for JIRA trial period works. We received a wonderful email from a perspective customer saying that the big ugly watermark on the generated mockups prevented his company from properly testing the plugin, which really opened my eyes about it. Thanks so much Michi Y., you rock!
I had resorted to the watermark option out of lazyness, it was just so much quicker to code at the time. Once again, the lazy approach proved itself to require more total time than the "do it once and do it right" approach I usually go for. So this week I completely rewrote the license manager for Mockups for JIRA. It now gives you a fully-functional 30-day trial, just like Mockups for Confluence and Mockups for XWiki (and soon Mockups for FogBugz). Ugly watermarks are a thing of the past.
On a personal note, this new license manager is the first one I wrote using the agile "Test Driven Development" methodology, and I have to say, I'm a total convert! 🙂 I finally "get it". I have seen the light, how could I have not been doing this until now? I'm so embarrassed. 😉 I want to publicly thank my friend Stefano Masini (@stefanomasini) for showing me the way to enlightenment, as he has done so many times before.
Here's what else is new this week:
There's lots going on. In fact, a little too much for my taste. We like to only bite off what we can chew, but the (sudden to us) FogBugz 7.0 release stuffed a bunch more stuff in our mouths unexpectedly. Sorry for the imagery, but it's a pretty accurate depiction of how I feel right now. 😉 Don't worry we'll pull through, give us a couple of weeks.
The big news of the week - which will certainly help - is that Valerie switched from being a half-time to a full-time employee, and she promised to get over her shyness and introduce herself on this blog soon. 😉
I also met with lawyers a few times to talk about protecting the Balsamiq brand and different contracts that I need them to write. Lots going on there, exciting stuff (if a bit dry).
We have lots more news coming up in the near future, so stay tuned!
Onward, this is so much fun!
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My department at Intuit and I really enjoy using the product. Anxious to try the prototyping capability. Its a good tool goes hand in hand with Dan Roam’s book on the Back of the Napkin.
Thanks for mentioning me on your blog. I’m glad I could do something useful for you, even if it’s hard to really believe I could “enlight” anything on your road. That seems already pretty bright to me! 😉
Keep up the good work man!
I’m so exited with the online version that I can’t wait. I really think in this “Cloud Computing” era that will be a huge step forward for Balsamiq.
Maybe I’am too fast, but I’d love to see features like “sharing” mockups with people, make them public or private, having a group of teammates collaborating on the same mockups, allow other people comment about your mockups, and stuff like that. That will be awesome and you definitively will increase the number of people using your tool.
So keep us posted about Balsamiq Mockups. I’ll be the first reading the upcoming news.
Thanks for your hard work,
Santiago L. Valdarrama
Owner and Funder, Laura Software