Doubling down, cutting our Free plan

Fred Oliveira on September 21, 2012, Comments (3)

It’s hard to believe Goplan has been around since 2006. During these last 6 years, we’ve focused on making a platform for collaboration that our team, and companies like us, would love to use. We’ve seen it be used by companies large and small, running all sorts of businesses, around the world. It’s been amazing, and we wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for you and the rest of our users. We’re delighted to be able to work on this product.

Today we have rough news for users in our free plan – in short, we’re cutting it soon -, and we’d love to take the next couple of paragraphs to explain why we’re doing it, and what this means for you.

Why we’re removing our free plan

Ask anyone on our team, and we’d all say the same thing: it gave us an enormous pleasure to be able to help out companies by providing a free plan. It helped people bootstrap their projects, as we once did too. We also helped a number of non-profits and open-source projects throughout the years, when we believed the causes behind them.

Ultimately, however, providing a free plan takes a large toll on several things. Supporting such a huge (we do mean *huge*) number of free users in terms of computing power, storage, and more importantly, support is tough.

We want to focus our resources on providing an amazing service to people who are on our paid plans, and want to build the best collaboration platform out there.

What this means for you

To make this transition as smooth as possible for all of our users, we’ve given everyone who had a free plan with us 3 free months of our $10 Startup plan (with capacity for 10 unarchived projects and 10 users) – you can see this update in the “Edit Company > Your Subscription” page after logging in. We hope these 3 months surprise you positively enough that you decide to become a paid subscriber to our service.

We realize that this might mean we lose a few of you who for whom the startup plan is too much. If this is your case, we’d love to answer any questions you might have about successfully transitioning elsewhere – please get in touch with our team at support@goplanapp.com.

We hope you decide to become a paid subscriber, and that we continue to serve you in the future. We’re focused on the task of making Goplan the best platform out there, and we think you’ll love it with us.

Here’s to the next 6 years.

Avoiding downtime

Fred Oliveira on September 19, 2012, Comments Off

Early this morning, Goplan was down. In fact, this was the second time Goplan was down this month, tarnishing the otherwise impeccable uptime record we were on. We’ve been down a total of 9 hours since January 1st 2012, which results in 99.985% uptime for this year, all because of these two individual recent incidents – we can (and want to) do better.

We’re never happy when downtime happens, and every time we experience an incident such as today we take measures to make sure it doesn’t happen again. The biggest lesson from today was that we need to respond quicker to these incidents. So we improved our alerting and auto-scaling systems to be more aggressive: we’ll know sooner that something’s up, and we’ll consequently fix it sooner too. We want to be transparent about this too: we setup a public page at Pingdom where you can keep an eye on our uptime as much as we do.

We feel your pain whenever downtime occurs. We’ll keep fighting to keep those 99.98% back to 100. We’re sorry about today. Thanks for being with us through this.

Just launched: Internationalization

Fred Oliveira on September 11, 2012, Comments Off

One of the most frequent requests we’ve seen in the last few years here at Goplan was for internationalization in our interface. We’re happy to announce that we’ve just launched the support for it, and that if you live in a portuguese speaking country, chances are you noticed already. We’re launching internationalization with support for english and portuguese, and are planning to expand our language choices soon.

You’ll be able to configure the language you see on Goplan by going to your personal account settings. Let us know if there’s a language you’d like to see our interface in!

Just launched: Company calendar

Fred Oliveira on June 9, 2011, Comments (12)

In the last 2 days we launched 2 new features (the new project status widgets and the generic post-commit hooks for developers), so we thought we’d go for 3 features, 3 days in a row. This one’s something we wanted and you wanted too. A company-wide calendar, listing calendar events, tasks and milestones happening in all the projects you care about in your company. The new calendar is stepping into the shoes of the very old (and quite outdated) company agenda, which basically listed the same thing, but in a way that was not as friendly.

This feature is now active on all user accounts, and can be accessed straight from the dashboard by clicking “Company calendar” in the sidebar (the old “Company agenda” link is now gone). Keep in mind you can’t add events through this calendar interface yet as it is read-only, but it’s in our plans for the future.

Hope you like all the new features and updates we’re rolling out. As always, your feedback is quite welcome. Reach us in the comments here or by email at support@goplanapp.com. Thank you!

Just launched: Project status info

Fred Oliveira on June 9, 2011, Comments (5)

Here’s something exciting. We’ve just rolled out project statuses for the Goplan dashboard – if you login to your Goplan account you should see them already. These allow you to get a quick glimpse of your project’s progress, based on the amount of tasks that are still remaining. If you click the project status widget you also get a rundown of the number of tickets pending on that project.

People have been asking for this feature for a bit, and we’re very happy to be able to roll it out today. We’re definitely interested in hearing your thoughts on this feature and ideas for improvements on the dashboard if you have any. Hope you like the updates!

About the Goplan iPhone app

Fred Oliveira on June 8, 2011, Comments (11)

People who’ve been with us for a while know that we’ve been working on an iPhone application for Goplan. They also know it never launched – a cause for some dispair and disappointment, both for our users as well as ourselves. We thought we would explain why the app isn’t out yet and what we’re doing instead.

We saw an iPhone application as a way to access Goplan when mobile – something we’d appreciate ourselves, and that we know users would like to have too. However, in recent weeks we noticed how long we were spending on creating an OS-specific application for the iPhone (for a small number of our users) and not dedicating to the main product. After pondering on this for a while, we came to the conclusion that we’d better serve our users by focusing our efforts on our main web application’s features and experience.

So it is with a bit of sadness that we announce that we dropped our plans for an iPhone specific version of Goplan, at least for the near future. We want to keep improving the main application for everyone, and by focusing on it we’ll better serve all our users. We’ll also start to think about an HTML-based version of Goplan ready for mobile devices that people on iOS devices, Android and Blackberry can enjoy.

We know this decision is bound to disappoint quite a few of you – particularly those who’ve been waiting for it for a bit. But it is for a good cause. We want to nail the perfect project management experience online, and focusing on the main app is the best way to do it. Our API is available for developers who want to build app on top of Goplan. Our reframed focus on the main app experience will bring lots of great things and updates to Goplan (today we rolled out a few UI updates and the new post-commit hook support for developers). As always, we welcome your feedback regarding this announcement. We work on Goplan every day for you guys, so your opinion matters. Thanks!

Just launched: Generic post-commit hook support

Fred Oliveira on June 8, 2011, Comments Off

This is a developer feature – if you manage your software development projects on Goplan, this post might interest you. Read on!

A couple of weeks we launched post-commit hook support for Github. We don’t discriminate based on version control systems or services you use, so today we’re launching generic post-commit hook support on Goplan. So if you want your source code commit messages to show up on your project’s activity feed, you can check the updated “Hooks” page inside each of your Goplan products for information on how to push messages to our system.

We’ve had several requests for generic git and subversion support, so here it is! We hope that these features help you keep track of everything related to your projects right from inside Goplan. Let us know if you have any feedback on this feature or our product as a whole.

Just launched: Github hooks

Fred Oliveira on May 30, 2011, Comments (1)

We’re big fans of Github. We use it to host our source code (both open as well as closed), and have individually been users since the very early days of the service. It makes us quite happy to launch post-commit hook URLs for Goplan projects.

So if you create software and host your source code on Github too, you can go to any of your projects on Goplan and use the new “Hooks” menu to grab the URL to use on Github as a post-commit hook. This makes your source code commits show up in your Goplan activity, linking directly to the commit on Github. Exciting! Let us know in the comments how you feel about the change and if you are looking for something else. Happy post-commit hooking!

Note: The Agendacat picture above is from the Octodex and was created by firstdegree.