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Keep Your Codebase Maintainable - Introducing Inline Comments in Merge Requests

Posted by Titas Norkunas on Tue, Mar 19, 2013
  
  

Code Review is an essential practice for teams that want to have a Maintainable Codebase. Some teams go as far as instituting peer programming, where two developers to work on a single computer on a single piece of code. However, most of us don't have this luxury. For everyone else, we present lightweight Merge Request reviews with inline comments.

Today, after much experimentation and input from customers like you we are ready to release the fruits of our labor. Merge Request now include inline comments. Thanks go to Kivanio Barbosa and Ghislaine Guerin for their contributions.

mr inline resized 600

Includes, but not limited to:

  • Add Inline Comment by clicking the green comment icon
  • See who participates in the discussion on a specific version of a file

  • Mention people when replying - bring their attention to your Inline Comment

  • Enable Code Review notifications in stream to get emails about comments

We are listening to your feedback. Let us know how we can improve Merge Requests to suit your needs.

Learn more about Assembla Repository features here.


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Your Code: Accessible, Easy, Fast

Posted by Titas Norkunas on Fri, Mar 08, 2013
  
  

We haven’t been blogging for a while, but that does not mean we haven’t been busy. As you have seen, one of the things we have been working on is rethinking how code is browsed and how to improve the experience for both developers and other team members.

Dig into your code with the redesigned Code Browser

Code Browser


  • Browse the code faster with our ajax implementation of the source view
  • Merge request, fork (Git-only) and compare controls are easier to find and use
Understand your code’s history with Commits and Previous Versions

Commits / Previous Versions

  • Use Previous Versions to see commits affecting only a specific folder or file
  • Easily understand which tickets are affected by which commits
Keep your codebase sustainable with Inline Comments

Inline Comments

  • Discuss code on a specific commit
  • Mention people when replying to get the focus of that person right where you want it
We’re continuing to improve the Repository tool UI’s. You can read more about our Repository features here

Do you like what we’ve done so far? Let us know in the comments.

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Perforce Endorses "Beyond Scrum"

Posted by Jon Friedman on Thu, Jan 17, 2013
  
  

At Assembla, we have been working on going "Beyond Scrum" with new techniques for continuous delivery and scaling an agile project.  Our friends and technology partners at Perforce Software have joined the movement with a newsletter article: Beyond Scrum: How to Apply Agile Techniques to Distributed Teams and Large Projects.  This is the beginning of a tipping point in enterprise adoption.

Perforce built their presentation around one of our diagrams:

Perforce blog post Beyond Scrum

 

There is a lot of great material in this article. Much of it came from a joint webinar presented by Andy Singleton of Assembla and Randy DeFauw of Perforce. So take a look at the article, and if you want more detail watch the webinar too.

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Beyond Scrum: Introducing Simple Scalable Agile Development [Video]

Posted by Jon Friedman on Thu, Sep 27, 2012
  
  


On 9/25/2012, Assembla and Perforce presented a webinar titled "Beyond Scrum: Introducing Simple Scalable Agile Development." It is very clear that this is a hot topic with over 1,000 people registering for the webinar. For those that did not get a chance to register or attend, the video and slides are below. Enjoy. 

 View and download the slides.

Webinar Overview:

Scrum is the most popular Agile process, and aspects like the daily meeting are familiar to most developers and businesspeople. But it's not for everyone.

Scrum was designed for small collocated teams working on simple projects. Larger Scrum projects can experience hierarchical planning, integration nightmares, and inefficient use of resources.

In this webinar you'll see an Agile framework that avoids these problems by recognizing the concept that managing code is often easier than managing people.

Other Releated Resources from our Blog:

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Webinar: Beyond Scrum - Introducing Simple Scalable Agile Development

Posted by Jon Friedman on Fri, Sep 07, 2012
  
  


On September 25 Assembla and Perforce are presenting a new webinar: 

Beyond Scrum: Introducing Simple Scalable Agile Development

Scrum is the most popular Agile process, and aspects like the daily meeting are familiar to most developers and businesspeople. But it's not for everyone.

Scrum was designed for small collocated teams working on simple projects. Larger Scrum projects can experience hierarchical planning, integration nightmares, and inefficient use of resources.

In this webinar viewers will see...

  • An Agile framework that avoids these problems by recognizing the concept that managing code is often easier than managing people 
  • A demonstration of this framework that uses Assembla's hosted planning tools and Perforce repositories. 

Presented by:

Andy Singleton, CEO of Assembla, and Randy DeFauw, Technical Marketing Manager at Perforce

Tuesday, September 25 | 19:00 CEST | 1:00 pm EDT | noon CDT | 11:00 am MDT | 10:00 PDT

Screen Shot 2012 09 06 at 11.15.41 PM 

You can also try Perforce on Demand, hosted by Assembla here.

webinar logos         

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Announcing Perforce On-Demand

Posted by Andy Singleton on Wed, Jul 11, 2012
  
  


Today we are announcing the first-ever availability of Perforce depots (repositories) on-demand with integrated ticketing and collaboration tools. Existing Assembla users can add a Perforce depot to any new or existing projects. If you do not have any Assembla account, get started today for free.

WHY PERFORCE?

We like git for its developer-friendly workflows, and Subversion for its simplicity and multi-subtree scalability. However, Perforce brings some special capabilities:

  • Perforce is the repository of choice for game developers who use big asset files and terabyte-sized repositories.
     
  • Perforce has mature, commercially supported clients. They include visualizations like “heatmap,” which shows which lines are recently modified and a stream browser that shows the flow of code between streams.
     
  • Perforce merges on the server, which turns out to be useful. Git merges on the client. Git is a distributed VCS, where you have all of the information and software required to do a merge right on your workstation.  If you want to send code to a different stage of development someone with a different repository usually has to run a manual merge. Subversion is somewhere in between. It merges on the client, using information it requests from the server. This splitting of information places some limitations on the merges that it can do successfully and also requires manual intervention. Perforce is a truly centralized VCS that merges on the server. So you can set up streams and tell the server to merge changes automatically to specific teams, builds, and releases. The stream actions are important if you do a lot of continuous integration at enterprise-scale. You can accelerate development by feeding changes automatically to the various build and deploy points. That’s one reason why big software companies like VMware rely on Perforce.

WHAT DO YOU GET?

The Assembla implementation includes all of our normal repository features, including a Web code browser, activity stream, and email alerts. You also get professional server management and backup. You get integrated permissions, which means that every space gets its own p4d server with users that match the space's team and can login with an Assembla username and password.

We added code review with merge requests that are very similar to our git merge requests. A developer can make changes on a “development" stream, and then create a merge request to send them to the “mainline” stream. A mainline owner can use the online review board to make comments and merge the changes.

So, you get four sources of acceleration from Perforce on-demand, hosted by Assembla. First, you can quickly create depots and invite users. Second, you can work together in an Assembla workspace with a highly visible activity stream and tasks. Third, you can use Perforce streams to run continuous integration with merge, build, test, and deploy. Fourth, you can review code from a lot of contributors and make sure that it works correctly, and your mainline stream is always ready to deploy, and you can release multiple times every day.

HOW TO USE IT

1) Get a client from the Perforce site.  Add a Perforce depot to any new or existing Assembla project. If you do not have an Assembla account, get started today for free.

2) Follow the instructions on the Assembla Source/P4 tool to set P4PORT and P4HOST. When using non-cloud Perforce you only set P4PORT to point to a server. In our cloud implementation we send P4PORT to a proxy server, and use P4HOST to connect you to the correct depot in our redundant and scalable cloud of servers.

3) You get a mainline stream and you can commit to it directly. Or, you can create development streams where your contributors can work and submit merge requests.

CREDITS

We did a Perforce/Assembla press release.  Assembla received the opportunity to become the FIRST provider of on-demand Perforce repositories after I sent a note to Perforce last year suggesting that we try it. Special thanks go to Randy DeFauw at Perforce for pushing this project forward and providing technical advice. Vladimir Zdorovenco and Sergiy Golub from Assembla figured out how to use the p4 sever in an on-demand, Web product. Thanks go to Nigel Chanter and Chris Seiwald, who run Perforce, for agreeing to try it and allowing Assembla licensing for up to 17 users for free to use with your Assembla project. If more users are necessary, please contact us for details.

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