My work runs on Basecamp. We chose it for two reasons, first because it did (nearly) everything we needed it to do, second, because it was being developed by a company we loved.
Now, it's completely integrated into our days to day production. We depend on it. If I walked in to work today and Basecamp was down, I might as well turn around and head home. We've let 37Signals premiere product become essential to us.
As of today, we're using their formerly premiere product. And if we wanted to upgrade to their premiere product, we'd lose completely essential feature.
Yes, they can say that Basecamp Classic will be the same great product it's always been, but it won't. Part of that greatness was innovation, and I don't think anyone believes that 37Signals will continue to innovate with a product that has "Classic" in its name.
The solution isn't hard. 37Signals just needs to be clear.
Will critical features like Time Tracking be in a future version of Basecamp, or will that requirement make us, forever, second class users? Because, I'd rather be a 1st class user at one of Basecamp's competitors than a 2nd class user at the service I've been using for the past 4 years.
Basecamp Classic originally launched without even file uploads!
We'll be busy bees making Basecamp Next fill in gaps all over the place in the coming months. Looking into how we can solve people's time tracking needs with a great workflow in Basecamp Next is high on that list!
> If we had tried to reimplement every single Basecamp Classic feature in Basecamp Next before we launched, it would have taken a very long time.
As a software developer, I understand this. But I also understand that giving the user the power to migrate projects one-by-one, managing 2 codebases and offering support for 2 products is also a very large undertaking. I feel like adding Time and Private messages would have taken less time and perhaps only pissed people off momentarily when you flipped the switch, like when Facebook and YouTube users protest and then eventually shut up.
By over-engineering this process, I feel like you've opened yourselves up to competitors because now you're that company that is trying to satisfy everyone.
There's more to time management than just prediction. When I was working for a company doing client work, we used Basecamp to keep track of how long we spent on each project so we could bill appropriately.
If you're committing to adding Time-Tracking in the future, publicize it, so users like me will be confident that it's worth sticking with Basecamp.
Until that happens, you're telling us, "Sorry, you're not our target user base."
This is a big part of why we're keeping Basecamp Classic around for a very long time. Basecamp Next was not going to launch with all the features that Classic already has. So it's OK that it's not a perfect fit for all existing customers on Day 1.
The iPhone didn't have copy'n'paste for a while, either. There's just so much you can do for launch, if you want to ship.
There is a disclaimer, "Some stuff on the Goodbye list is completely gone from Next, while other things are just executed differently enough that they don’t resemble the way things worked in Classic... There’s some stuff on Goodbye that we ended up keeping."
That said, it's probably worth keeping this "goodbye list" in mind when DHH says carefully hedged things like how the team is "looking into how we can solve people's time tracking needs with a great workflow in Basecamp Next." There's a good chance that will NOT be time tracking as you know it.
Not that there's anything wrong with that, but I don't think you should be kept waiting around for a feature that may be axed.
Quote: "[...] one of the key arguments for a rewrite was that we wanted a dramatic leap forward in speed — one that wouldn’t be possible through mere evolution."
I'm a bit disappointed now as i was looking forward to Basecamp Next.
37signals, and DHH, constantly warn anybody that will listen, that they should not use free products because that "makes them the product" and leaves them at the mercy of an acquisition, or failure, etc.
But your comment shows that one can face the same risks with every Saas... Boxed software wasn't all bad! ;-) and open source software that you host yourself isn't bad either!
Something between boxed software and a one-for-all SaaS.
Excerpt: "...A lot of software developers are seduced by the old "80/20" rule. It seems to make a lot of sense: 80% of the people use 20% of the features. So you convince yourself that you only need to implement 20% of the features, and you can still sell 80% as many copies.
Unfortunately, it's never the same 20%. Everybody uses a different set of features. In the last 10 years I have probably heard of dozens of companies who, determined not to learn from each other, tried to release "lite" word processors that only implement 20% of the features. This story is as old as the PC. Most of the time, what happens is that they give their program to a journalist to review, and the journalist reviews it by writing their review using the new word processor, and then the journalist tries to find the "word count" feature which they need because most journalists have precise word count requirements, and it's not there, because it's in the "80% that nobody uses," and the journalist ends up writing a story that attempts to claim simultaneously that lite programs are good, bloat is bad, and I can't use this damn thing 'cause it won't count my words."
I want to migrate, but...
> Basecamp Classic and the new Basecamp don't offer the same features, so some data in Classic won't make it into the new Basecamp.
So maybe I'll stay. But wait...
> Will you continue to improve Classic? The majority of our design and development efforts moving forward will be focused on the all new Basecamp, but we'll continue to support Classic as long as customers continue using it. We expect that to be for many many years.
Maybe. Maybe not. The web moves very quickly you know. New browsers, standards, security risks etc. I can think of a million and one reasons Classic will get EOL'd sooner rather than later.
This is certainly faithful to their backwards compatibility intolerance. The new product couldn't be bound by the "burden" of the old. Now I the customer am left with a very distasteful choice to make.
Will you continue to improve Classic? No. We will fix any bugs or other problems that stop our customers using Basecamp Classic but we will not be developing new features. Our focus now is on improving Basecamp Next so that Classic customers are happy to transition.
Their response is completely disingenuous.
As stated, the majority of our resources will go towards the new Basecamp. That's honest and as clear we can be without misleading anyone.
Edit: To be clear, I'm not criticising the position of you not knowing - it's a fair position given this is launch day. I'm criticising the fact that the answer to the question didn't say we don't know.
(I'm not saying this as a negative thing, it's going to be really interesting to see the response to this, I know there was a blog post a while ago saying there hardly anyone on the free account upgraded) I'm using a free basecamp account but we only have one project and $20/$25 is just a little much for that a micro plan at $10 would be awesome :) )
I'm fine with Basecamp Next being "not for me" right now because of that, but that doesn't mean I'm not a little disappointed.
I do think that there is a magic $5-9/mo range that individuals will pay without thinking too much. Above that amount, they start equating a subscription with a trip to the movies or a (cheap) night out and you've lost them.
I suppose the big difference is that Basecamp offers unlimited users.
["PersonOrGroup", "Bucket", "BucketAccess", "Calendar",
"CalendarEvent", "Project", "Person", "CalendarDisplay", "Todo"]
["constructor", "isAllDay", "isTimed", "urlRoot", "getBucketPath",
"showPath", "bucket", "doesOccurOn", "doesOccurOnOrAfter",
"doesOccurBetween", "getDueDate", "summary"]
And obviously the difference between other ruby shops and 37signals is that they are the reasons other ruby shops exist.
My name is Jeff Morse. I'm a Recruiter at a super-charged start-up called Mixbook www.mixbook.com I came across your profile on hacker news and have a full-time Jr. Backbone developer opening working onsite in our Palo Alto, California office that is a great match for your background/experience. Would you be ready to make the move to Silicon Valley, the most innovative place for web start ups which offers superior growth opportunities for talented Backbone developers like yourself? Mixbook will pay for all relocation costs.
Would you be open to taking a phone/Sykpe call from our CTO, Aryk Grosz (see attached LinkedIn profile) to discuss the position further? If interested, email me your Skype ID and I’ll coordinate the call with Aryk.
We're Hiring http://www.mixbook.com/careers#job-openings
Our Product: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z_dhKroiAo4
About Us: https://gist.github.com/1960387
I'm just explaining it. I don't think that posting it as humor out of context is good posting on Hacker News.
I actually like that they've created a brand new experience/product, and have given everyone ample time (90 days) to evaluate whether or not they like it. I also thought the FAQ was clear, and the transition process was well explained.
As for the loss of time tracking that a few people have complained about... If you're really that serious about time tracking, you shouldn't be using the extremely limited time tracking capabilities of Basecamp Classic anyway. We use Harvest and integrate it with our Basecamp account, and it's a perfect setup for us. I always thought time tracking seemed like a "nice to have" feature of Classic.
I'm afraid what actually will happen is 45-50% will be on the new Basecamp, and 50% on the old, and it will be confusing to clients who sometimes use the old, sometimes use the new, etc... Will be interesting to see how it plays out, as with everything 37sigs does, it's innovative and if it works I wouldn't be surprised to see more people taking a similar approach.
I also agree that this could be seen as inconsistent with their stance on making opinionated software. However, I put myself in their shoes and see only a couple of options - you either revamp Basecamp with a new design/user experience and risk a huge backlash from your customer base, or you build a brand new product and give people the choice. I'd go with the latter option.
I just noticed that the Launchpad bar at the top of each page lists both Basecamp and Basecamp Classic when you're in the new Basecamp, but if you switch over to Classic you lose the quick link to the new Basecamp.
It would be nice during the trial to have the ability to switch back and forth easily from the Launchpad page/bar. This is a minor thing, but it would help me easily show my team the differences between Classic and Next because I know it will take a bit of "selling" them on it before we can fully make the transition.
Both links are also labeled "Basecamp Projects." I could see that causing some confusion with other people on my account.
They didn't own basecamp.com then, now they have.
"Project name is bigger than domains" is a part of lie part of true: Product and it's name important but if you can't get the domain just be arrogant and say to people it doesn't matter. But because you know the importance of the domain name , when you have money and chance get the domain and rule the world.
First time I've seen that, but makes sense for an OSS project to promote itself to people who would have the console open, i.e. devs.
It says on the front page:
projects managed with Basecamp
rock-solid uptime reliability record
of customers recommend Basecamp
I'd like to see a successful product or company that hasn't done some sort of 'shaddy marketing'.
The new product reminds me (even in the name) the failed NeXTSTEP operation systems. The incompatibility with existing solutions was part of it. Basecamp Next is not an upgrade, but a new product. It does not have the same set of features, in fact it has even less (time tracking, milestones, etc). Free accounts are also dropped out, as it seams. Old browsers like IE7 do not seam to be supported... A lot of things are going against what J was preaching all those years.
I can see Basecamp fans buying it, but if I would be a new user and I would check their website for the first time (that is also designed with you already knowing about Basecamp in mind) I would ask myself "why would I pay $20-$150 a month for a product with so few features"). It's a nice to-do list, but the users got smarter and the market moved forward - users need more features, not just a one-page project page (Google Docs can do half of it out of the box and for free).
Comparing side by side isn't the end goal. The goal is which product fits you best. If you love Classic, you can stay with Classic. If you prefer the feature/UI/ideas mix of the new Basecamp, come on over.
Also, does the API (http://developer.37signals.com/basecamp/) stay the same?
The API isn't ready yet, soon though!
It is a shame that API appears to be only an afterthought. Otherwise third parties could possibly offer some of the missing features.
Seeing this new Basecamp product makes me even more so want to use the OLD Classic version ... yet I can't.
I suspect we'll have to use to-dos or calendar events. But calendar events don't seem to appear on the overview page and can't be checked off as completed either.
Anyway, clearly I need to keep investigating.
I ask because my corporation can't use Basecamp unless this new product has coverage.
If you click on the blank project boxes behind the Red Marker "Welcome" text, the Add Project bounces to attract your attention.
I'd also say its not vague - they probably spent a great deal of time naming the pages/titles from a usability & SEO standpoint. I like the redesign a lot.
We use a Gmail contextual gadget to create Basecamp todo from emails so I wonder if that is going to work.
EDIT: Told the team about it in a ticket, JIC.
Not sure how 37signals can claim 99% uptime when on the first day of launch, it's not working.
37signals, this is why you don't rewrite software from scratch.
Now the People ("Everyone") section won't work for me.
I can't be alone with experiencing this pain - right?
Good way to start off the launch guys. I won't be a customer anytime soon. Just say'n
Good job 37signals. You instill so much confidence in your in attention to details in your product. Much like the recent known Rails security vulnerability that you never addressed and now Github was compromised as a result.
The validation that they are doing when you enter the card is just Luhn validation.§
This is basically just to ensure that the numbers entered into the field "at least have the possibility of being a valid credit card". No processing of the card is being done at this stage.
§ - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Luhn_algorithm