14 Replies Latest reply on Jun 26, 2015 8:45 AM by jerrysalem

    development notes etc.

    malachydevlin

      Hi, I was wondering how you all handled ongoing development notes on a custom project.

      I am working on a largish solution at the moment and have an overwhelming amount of hand written notes, spreadsheets, emails, printouts, diagrams, todo lists, scribbled notes & diagrams etc.

      I'm struggling to keep it in any sensible order and to be honest most of the design process is coming out of my head.

      Just wondering is there any solution that you fellow developers find helpful.

       

      im beginning to think having it in a hard copy file will be as productive as anything else..

        • 1. Re: development notes etc.
          nicolai

          Well, you can build a database to organise this stuff.

           

          There are lots of tools, the web based tend to work better. Evernote, OneNote will let you store and group all sorts of documents and access them from different locations/devices. The hard copies probably could be scanned or just filed with locations recorded, so you can search them

           

          Basecamp  is very good with documents and project management, a bit expensive though.


          If you are in-house and in Windows environment check if IT uses TFS or JIRA, both can store documents and track projects.

          • 2. Re: development notes etc.
            TimAnderson

            I tend to use Evernote to supplement any hard copy I have. After meetings I convert my hand-written notes into Evernote for 2 reasons. Firstly I know I will not be able to read the notes in the weeks to come (my writing is terrible) and secondly it helps flesh out thoughts I had while writing notes.

             

            Evernote lets me keep ideas, checklists, pdfs, web pages eytc together and synchronised on my desktop, laptop and iPad

            • 3. Re: development notes etc.
              nicolai
              I tend to use Evernote to supplement any hard copy I have.

               

              You can take a picture of the hard copy and upload it to Evernote, very straight forward process in the mobile app.

              • 4. Re: development notes etc.
                Extensitech
                I'm struggling to keep it in any sensible order and to be honest most of the design process is coming out of my head.


                That issue reared its ugly head when I hired my first employee.


                Lately, I'm doing much, much more documentation "in-line" with comments and so forth: Script comments, scripts that are JUST comments, field comments, sticky notes on the RG, function comments, comments off the side of the layout or only visible in layout mode, etc. I used to have a separate documentation file (in Word) but I found that no one, myself included, ever seemed to open it up and read it (until and unless they'd already screwed something up!). Comments that show up where the developer "is" are much more effective, IMHO.


                Chris Cain

                Extensitech

                • 5. Re: development notes etc.
                  Markus Schneider

                  - we got an own FMGo solution to track the times AND protocolling the work. This can be quite detailled

                  - we got a 'ReleaseNotes' Part (separate table with some functionality) in the custom solution where we jot down the most important stuff, categorized et all

                  - we do FMDiff runs frequently (comparing the older with the current version), maye once in a week, month,

                  - from time to time, we do a CossCheck run (analyzer, nees a DDR)

                   

                  - when the solution is online, the ReleaseNotes will turn into a 'ticketing system'

                  • 6. Re: development notes etc.
                    TimAnderson

                    Yup Nicolai,

                     

                    but sometimes screen real estate means easier to look at the original hard copy! Evernote plus Fm working window plus Script workspace plus 4 x inspector palettes.....

                    • 7. Re: development notes etc.
                      nicolai
                      Evernote plus Fm working window plus Script workspace plus 4 x inspector palettes.....

                       

                      Time to plug in an external monitor? I have two.

                       

                      Even when you visit a client and work on a laptop, usually they will be fine to spare a monitor for a day.

                      • 8. Re: development notes etc.
                        TimAnderson

                        Me too - 2560x1440 and 1920x1200!

                        • 9. Re: development notes etc.
                          DLarsen

                          If you are in a Windows shop you should consider OneNote from Microsoft. Works well on the PC but there are iOS versions for iPad and iPhone too and they are very solid.

                          • 10. Re: development notes etc.
                            DLarsen

                            Oh, I forgot to mention; OneNote comes with MS Office so you may already have it and just aren't using it.

                            • 11. Re: development notes etc.
                              taylorsharpe

                              Here here, Chris Cain.  I strongly concur on putting lots of notes in scripts and calcs.  Also, I put notes about layouts past the right hand margin so I know any tricks or unusual things I am doing with a layout.  Or you can put them in the layout and just have them hide with hide calc of 1 so no one ever sees them but you.   Putting notes where the action really happens is more likely to be seen by a developer down the road working on this project than a document, at least in my experience.

                              • 12. Re: development notes etc.
                                nicolai
                                OneNote from Microsoft. Works well on the PC but there are iOS versions for iPad and iPhone

                                 

                                There is a version for Mac as well and it is pretty good.

                                • 13. Re: development notes etc.
                                  alangodfrey

                                  And (not 'instead') you could use Trello.  It's normally used for collaborative work, but it can complement Evernote and in-file notes.

                                  • 14. Re: development notes etc.
                                    jerrysalem

                                    One technique I have used is to create a table right in the solution that only the developer has access too (that is the [Full Access] account.

                                     

                                    Keep it really simple.  Subject, Body text fields. Date Created TimeStamp, and a container field.

                                    Just one layout no scripts.

                                     

                                    This way I have a place to write notes about the solution and store important documents. 

                                     

                                    Just my $0.02