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Try It Now - CAAC Roulette App

  • 1.  Try It Now - CAAC Roulette App

    Broadcom Employee
    Posted Mar 06, 2018 01:58 PM

    Hello Community! In my role as a DevOps Product Owner, I've needed to talk to internal developers about their experiences with our services. I need to avoid my natural tendencies to make biased decisions, such as talking to folks who are similar to me or who sit near me, so I hacked together this app to do the choosing for me. By letting the app decide who I talk to, I get more diverse conversations and thus make better decisions. This app is a general purpose tool that you can use too to help you connect with any user in Agile Central. For example:

    • As a Executive/Leader, connect with contributors to ensure they're aligned on your company's vision, motivated, and have a chance to ask you questions
    • As an Internal Product Owner, connect with developers in your organization to perform empathy interviews and get feedback on the value you deliver
    • As a Release Train Engineer, connect with train members to find risks and understand each members' unique strengths for making better plans
    • As a CA Agile Central Subscription Admins, connect with Agile Central users to understand the health of your implementation and discover ways to improve


    This app was inspired by an episode of the Invisibilia podcast where a techie made an app to connect him with random Facebook groups - Eager To Burst His Own Bubble, A Techie Made Apps To Randomize His Life : All Tech Considered : NPR 


    Note this app is not supported by CA and was created as a Hackathon. If you'd like to try more of my Agile Central apps, check out my app posts and GitHub.


    As a Hackathon, I'd love any feedback you have. This is just a MVP, so all enhancement ideas are welcome!


    How it works

    Welcome serendipity into your life with CA Agile Central (CAAC) Roulette! This app presents a random user with profile details and their recent work. (Note - the screenshots below look pixelated due to lots of redacted content)



    Some users have more or less profile information in Agile Central, so the app will adjust what is shown:


    If you aren't seeing recent stories for a user, you may need to change the project scope for the page to a project higher up your project hierarchy so it can find the user's work items.


    Make yourself a calendar reminder to play roulette once a week (or more!) and give it a spin. If the selected user is someone you've already talked to or doesn't match the criteria you want, give it another spin with the "Next User" button.


    Installation Instructions

    If you've never used a custom app in Agile Central, you're missing out! You can use my app right away by using a Custom HTML app to copy my code into Agile Central Custom HTML | CA Agile Central Help. My app's source code to copy into the app can be found at https://raw.githubusercontent.com/wkammersell/caac-roulette/master/deploy/App-uncompressed.html . If you need any help while installing the app, please let me know!


  • 2.  Re: Try It Now - CAAC Roulette App

    Posted Mar 06, 2018 04:46 PM

    I like it and the idea! Another reason it'd be awesome to have more Flowdock integration in AC - I'd love to be able to click on someone and kick off a 1:1 with them. Ah, we all can dream, can't we?


    I am noticing though that it is pulling in anyone from within the workspace ... it would be cool to be able to filter just a little bit, probably by project and be able to scope down?

  • 3.  Re: Try It Now - CAAC Roulette App

    Broadcom Employee
    Posted Mar 06, 2018 04:53 PM

    Thanks for the feedback John! I'll think about the project scoping idea and see if there's something I can add.

  • 4.  Re: Try It Now - CAAC Roulette App

    Posted Mar 06, 2018 05:01 PM

    This is just one workspace admin's opinion, but since you asked for feedback, let me give you some honest feedback:  I have zero use for this tool, and I am disappointed that CA spent time on it. 


    Our company has submitted numerous enhancement requests that our users have asked for, and we keep getting told "not on our roadmap".  So it is frustrating to me to see time and brainpower spent on something that has such little value to us.


    Like I said, just one person's opinion.  Maybe there are lots of other users out there who will love this.

  • 5.  Re: Try It Now - CAAC Roulette App

    Broadcom Employee
    Posted Mar 06, 2018 06:54 PM

    Thank you for the honest feedback Matt! I appreciate that you care about making Agile Central awesome, as I do, and that you took time and care to give your thoughts. I agree that this app isn't going to be useful for everyone, and its target user is someone who gets value from conversations with fellow Agile Central users while wishing to avoid bias in doing so.


    I wrote this app as a hack: to provide value to myself, to others, and to develop my coding skills. It's my way of giving back to the Community and to leverage our collective wisdom on the best way to solve problems. It's also part of personally trying new innovative ideas that may sink or swim to determine what is valuable to our users and what isn't. As a Product Owner, who doesn't code, it was a great way to spend my personal evening/weekend time to develop a new idea, and the app is not supported by CA in any way.


    At Agile Central, we value exploring new innovation and structure it through our Hackathon events. Hackathons are a time for developers to take customer feedback, or their personal passion, and create new solutions and Agile Central features. You may be surprised the incredible value that first came from a Hackathon. Here's some recent Hackathon successes:



    If you'd like to learn more about Hackathons, we have a webinar coming up on April 11th - CA Agile Central Community Webcast - Ready, Set, Hack: Fostering a Culture of Innovation Through Hackathons – April 11 1:00PM ET 


    Thank you again for your feedback, and I'm more than happy to go into more depth. We're also constantly reviewing customer feedback to look for patterns to identify the features that will have the most benefit for the most users. If there's a particular request that you would like an update on, please message me and I'll gladly get more information.

  • 6.  Re: Try It Now - CAAC Roulette App

    Posted Mar 06, 2018 07:09 PM

    William, thanks for your positive response to my negative feedback.  I agree, there have been many, many useful features that came of Rally/CA Hackathons.  All of the ones on your list above are great examples of features that I have found valuable.


    In this particular case, this particular feature just missed the mark for me. And I figure the only way to improve things is to give feedback.  I'll get back to you with the links for our MVP requests.


    Thanks again for your thoughtful and professional response.

  • 7.  Re: Try It Now - CAAC Roulette App

    Posted Mar 07, 2018 12:34 PM

    I too, am a product owner who doesn't code, but i'm not letting that stop me from learning how to customize apps.    Knowing how to code is like knowing how to read music. It does not guarantee, nor is it a prerequisite to creating beautiful works of art.

  • 8.  Re: Try It Now - CAAC Roulette App

    Posted May 23, 2018 07:20 AM

    Agreed - zero use for this.  Use the time to fix "IDEAS" submitted.

  • 9.  Re: Try It Now - CAAC Roulette App

    Posted Mar 07, 2018 01:02 PM

    After installing, I'm not getting all the info.  No pictures, no Last Active Date, no Next user button.  Any ideas?  I fear it is entitlement/permissions related.

  • 10.  Re: Try It Now - CAAC Roulette App

    Broadcom Employee
    Posted Mar 11, 2018 12:38 AM

    Thanks for trying the app Michael! And thanks for the screenshot! It looks like the user who is being loaded doesn't have a Last Activity Date, which shouldn't have been possible from the way the app gets its data. I've now added a safeguard check to see if the Last Activity Date exists. If you grab the latest code from GitHub at https://raw.githubusercontent.com/wkammersell/caac-roulette/master/deploy/App-uncompressed.html  it should fix the issue. I'd love to hear if that got it, or if the error still exists.


    If the error still exists, it'd be great to see the error you're getting by looking at the Javascript console for your browser. If you're using Chrome, it's under View > Developer > Javascript Console and there should be a bunch of red text from whatever is causing the bug.

  • 11.  Re: Try It Now - CAAC Roulette App

    Posted Mar 12, 2018 05:42 PM

    The error is gone!    The app is a pleasure!  I modified things a tiny bit, because I can, lol.

    I added an 's' to the image hyperlink.

    I swapped out Language for Member Since.  (aka User.CreationDate)

    I added the Time Zone (aka user.LastSystemTimeZoneName)

    I made the picture a tiny bit bigger



    The Recent Stories fetch/filter has a bug.  The stories it pulled for me are very old.


    I think the Full Name string and the aka string should be swapped, but that's debatable. 


    A cool addition would be to add an optional dropdown to select the role to familiar yourself with other Scrum Masters or Product Owners.


    A MUST HAVE suggestion - augment the URL for the User Story links to include "blank" so it opens in another tab and not the app.




  • 12.  Re: Try It Now - CAAC Roulette App

    Broadcom Employee
    Posted Mar 16, 2018 12:26 AM

    That's awesome that you tweaked the app!! If you want to make a pull request, I'd love to accept it back into the app.


    For the story list, a better way for me to do it would be via the Lookback API, but I didn't want to invest in that extra complexity if folks weren't going to use it. Right now it looks for stories where you're the owner with latest update date. Depending on your organization's workflow, that may mean that only older stories are shown. Better would be to use the Lookback API to see the stories where you were most recently the owner.


    In our organization, people often put jokes as their display name, which is why I did the full name as the prominent one. We have a tradition of updating them regularly or updating them for each other (since many of us are workspace admins).


    For the URL, I'm using the Rally.nav.Manager.showDetail function which can take a set of args that may be able to open in a new window, but the documentation is unclear. For me, I'm using QDP - Detail Pages | CA Agile Central Help  - which means the details are opened in the side page rather than making a page navigation. If you switch to QDP too then it's not an issue.


    Thanks again for the feedback! I've added issues in the repo for your finds/suggestions - Issues · wkammersell/caac-roulette · GitHub. You should definitely do the PR to close out issue 5


  • 13.  Re: Try It Now - CAAC Roulette App

    Broadcom Employee
    Posted Mar 26, 2018 10:32 AM

    michael.addington - I made an update to use the Lookback API to fetch recent work items, which should fix the issue you found with them not seeming recent. Now it will look for items you recently worked on, even if you're no longer the owner.


    I tried to keep the changes minimal so you can still make a pull request for your changes. If you'd like help with the pull request process via Git, I'm happy to help walk you through it. It can be your next quest on your app customization adventure! You could even treat yourself to a Nerd Merit Badge - Open Source – Nerd Merit Badges 

  • 14.  Re: Try It Now - CAAC Roulette App

    Posted Apr 17, 2018 03:44 PM

    kamwi02 - I would love to have a walkthrough of GIT Pulling.  How can we go about it? Sorry about the long delay in replying.   Train planning and releases got the best of me.

  • 15.  Re: Try It Now - CAAC Roulette App

    Broadcom Employee
    Posted Apr 17, 2018 06:28 PM

    No worries michael.addington! I sent you a private message via the community, and if that didn't get to you, please email me at william.kammersell@ca.com and I can get you started. Congrats in advance on your first PR!