Since the last release of the AIT Voting Extension in November last year we put in great efforts to further improve the process to democratize your backlog. Thus we are happy to announce today the new version of the AIT Voting Extension, which contains a lot of major improvements, new features and some bugfixes. The following post describes all the small and big things included in the new release.
Before we start with the contents of the release we want to announce two changes to the extension itself: With the new release, the AIT Voting Extension supports no longer Azure DevOps Server but only Azure DevOps Services. Further we only support Chrome for the extension. Other browsers will most probably work too but are not tested and therefore not supported by us.
Until now, when creating or editing a voting, the work item type of the items to vote on could be specified. This resulted in some problems when using the ‘Apply to backlog’-functionality, which were caused by the fact that a backlog can contain not only one, but multiple different work item types. This problem as well as the wish to also be able to create votings based on a query is solved by the new feature, which allows to choose between two types for a voting:
Using a backlog-based voting allows you to select the backlog-level to vote on. Thereby the available backlog-levels are dependent on the underlying process of the current team project. For example, for CMMI the backlog levels Epics, Features, and Requirements exist. As a result, the voting contains all work items which are part of the selected backlog-level and the already known ‘Apply to backlog’-functionality can be applied with some adaptions: The ‘Apply to backlog’-button is no longer available on the voting page but is now shown on the summary page for a finished voting (which is described in a later section). Thus temporary voting results can not be applied to the backlog anymore.
Using a query-based voting allows to select a shared query of type ‘flat list of work items’ as base for the voting. Shared queries of type ‘work items and direct links’ as well as ‘tree of work items’ are not supported.
After the query selection, all work items specified by the query are then contained in the voting. Since there is no direct relationship to the backlog in this case, the ‘Apply to backlog’-functionality is not available for query-based votings.
The second new great feature removes the necessity to manually control that people can only vote during a specific time span. Instead it is now possible to configure a start and end date and time, which determines the time span in which a voting is active. When a voting is active, it can be voted on the included work items as usual and a hint is shown when the active session for the voting will end. On the other side, when a voting is inactive (before the configured start or after the configured end), it is not possible to vote but the list of included work items and the current results can still be inspected as long as the voting is not stopped by the administrator. Furthermore a hint is shown which indicates if the voting has not yet started or has already ended.
Extended configuration possibility for allowed number of votes
Following another feature request we extended the possibility how to restrict the maximum number of allowed votes. Now it is not only possible to specify the allowed number of votes per work item, but also the number of votes per user can now be set.
In the past there was no other possibility to get and further process the results of a finished voting then manually extract them from the voting page. With the new release we introduced a summary within the voting settings page. The summary shows the results of the completed voting and gives the possibility to copy them as HTML. Thus the results can for example be distributed to all participants by mail or can be persisted somewhere else.
Furthermore the results can be applied to the backlog for backlog-based votings as described before.
The little things and bugfixes
In addition to all the new major features described above there are some minor things we want to mention:
- There is now an icon for the AIT Voting Extension in the vertical navigation.
- The bug that System.AssignedTo was not displayed for work items in a voting is fixed.
We hope you like the new features as much as we do. Please provide us with any feedback you have on the new release.