Jira from Atlassian Sucks

Jira, the project management and bug tracking software from Atlassian SUCKS BIG TIME. It sucks so much that I had to log into my website and write this rant even though I have a thousand other more pressing things to do. Jira and it’s lack of brilliance is the most irritating piece of software I have had the misfortune of experiencing and almost not using at all since Windows 98.

I just received another pre-alpha release of my app from my developer and as you would expect from such an early-stage release it was buggy. When something is buggy you write down the bugs so they can be fixed. And this is what Jira fails so hard at doing. By the time I logged into their slow sluggish hosted solution and clicked my way through their grotesque old-world menu system and finally found that little miniscule button for reporting a bug – I had already forgotten what it was. Safe to say I resorted to the most logical thing to do at that point – I opened a Google Docs text editor and added all the bugs as bullet points with the app version number as the title (even better, I shared that doc with my developer so he gets instant updates whenever I add something. Even better again, I can add bugs from anywhere now including my phone with the Google Drive App). And that is where all my bugs will go from now on.

This is the first time I am put in front of what the industry apparently thinks is a great, useful, brilliant and overall easy-to-use “behind-the-scenes” software and boy are they wrong. If this is as good as it gets my next piece of software will be a project management and bug-tracking app that makes Jira look like the crippled mouth-breathing relic that it is.

If Jira was free this rant wouldn’t be fair. But Jira is a subscription-based $10/month extortion where you pony up the cash because you are one of the unfortunate souls that have invested in all-things 90’s such as subversion.

Enterprise software is a funny world because things like Jira and Bugzilla can exist. But that’s also a huge opportunity. Let me give you a hint: mobile software development is still a huge booming gold rush in its infancy. It is expected to be worth $25 billion dollars in 2015. More entrepreneurs than ever before will enter this booming market with limited coding ability and they will need something other than Jira. If you can create a project management and bug tracking software that is tailored for mobile app development, resides in the cloud, is accessible from anything with a screen and an internet connection, is just as easy and straight forward to use as Gmail and its related services, costs $5.99 a month and let’s a cross-functional team spend more time fixing bugs than documenting them, you might have a winner. Please put me in the credits if you do.

Update

Use Trello. It has all the features I listed above, it is free, it works on any device, it is hosted in the cloud and it is very easy to use for a smaller team.

Hiring a Technical Person

I ran into a post about software developer interviews on The Daily WTF. It was full of software developers complaining about business people and how they are stupid.

I’ve interviewed countless people and the game works the same except when it comes to software developers. If a non-tech person shows up for an interview they do their best to impress. When a software developer shows up they have attitude and entitlement issues and expect you to impress them.

When a non-tech person shows up for an interview they do their best to convey they belong on the team. When a software developer shows up you have to convince them that they belong on the team.

Software developers are dangerous. They control your assets and your access to them. Because there is such demand for them they have the upper hand. How do we stop them?

Microsoft Sucks at Product Presentations

Screwing up a presentation is pretty easy, especially if you work for Microsoft. Just volunteer to present any of their cutting-edge products and the rest will sort itself out. Microsoft has an impressive history of embarrassing product presentations. It has become almost a tradition for each new iteration of Windows to crash on-stage to everyone else’s amusement.

The following video depicts Steven Sinofsky subjected to such humiliation. It is funny because he sticks to the script even after the tablet has broken down.

And then there’s Bill Gates. This video depicts a classic BSOD (Blue Screen of Death) on stage. These were the rule and not the exception in the early days of Windows (and Microsoft).