Confluence 3.1-m7 Milestone Notes
Not quite a beta yet!

While this release is almost feature complete there are still one major technical improvement (superbatching) and one feature (the dashboard-widget) outstanding, so we can't call it beta just yet. Apart from that though, M7 is feature complete. Anything that you don't see here, you won't see in the final product. We will keep fixing bugs (yes, there are still quite a few unfortunately), but if something else in the functionality really annoys you, please raise it with us now! You can add a comment, or you can send us a mail, or of course raise JIRA issues.

Gadgets & Office Team

Indexing and Searching of Office 2007 files

The contents of Confluence attachments created by PowerPoint 2007, Excel 2007, and Word 2007 are now fully searchable inside Confluence. This includes files with pptx, xlsx, and docx extensions as well as other extensions like potx (PowerPoint template) and dotx (Word template).

PowerPoint 2007 previews

You can now preview PowerPoint 2007 files directly in Confluence. We're proud to say that this completes the goal of supporting the new 2007 file formats for the three main Microsoft Office products (Word, Excel, and PowerPoint) in Confluence 3.1. This is in addition to already supporting the legacy binary format.

Keyboard navigation of full-screen PowerPoint and PDF slideshows

If you are using Flash player 10 or higher, you will no longer see any controls when previewing Powerpoint or PDF files in full screen mode. Instead, you must use the spacebar or the arrow keys to move between the slides. Press escape to exit full screen mode.

Launch Microsoft Office from the Attachments screen.

Previously, you had to preview a file to get the option to edit it. We've added a new 'Edit' option to each attachment that will launch the appropriate desktop editor for that attachment. The old 'Edit' option has been renamed to 'Properties'.

Editing user preferences of OpenSocial gadgets in the Macro Browser

As promised in the last release notes we moved the editing of non-hidden user preferences to the usual location for macro parameters on the right hand side:

(info) Please be aware that the properties of Atlassian gadgets and gadgets with hidden user preferences still show up on the gadget itself.

Activity Stream Gadget

We've added an activity stream gadget for Confluence. This means you can now have your Confluence Activity on your JIRA dashboard or on a Confluence page! You can also directly comment from the activity stream.

Dialogs Team

Page move dialog

We've added new tabs and improved the design of the new Move Page dialog based on feedback from earlier iterations. Some key improvements:

  • A quick way of specifying a known location in the wiki using space and page title autocomplete (quick-nav style)
  • Search and Recently Viewed tabs for locating a parent page in different ways
  • An improved tree component which gives better loading feedback
  • Fixed description panels so helpful text doesn't disappear when you scroll the tree
  • A new location panel in the dialog so you know where you're moving a page from and to
  • Immediately highlight problems with the new location, such as attempting to move a page beneath itself or its children.

The move dialog is feature-complete for this release, but we still have a few remaining improvements to make. In particular, scrolling the tree to the correct location when it opens and making the tree completely undraggable will be fixed for the next release.

Image browser

The new image browser dialog now supports uploading files. The upload proceeds faster than before (because the entire window doesn't need reloading), and you'll get a thumbnail of your image preselected, ready to insert.

We've fixed the bugs with image borders that prevented them working properly in the rich text editor, and enabled borders by default for newly inserted images. The dialog also includes some simple keyboard navigation that should make it more intuitive to interact with. All features of the image dialog have been tested with all our supported browsers.

We also spent some time on improved validation of uploaded attachments and thumbnail generation. The old insert image window is now disabled, so please let us know if you have any problems with the new functionality.

The image dialog is feature-complete for this release, but also has a few issues which will be fixed before the final release. Better handling of server outages and not being able to attach due to permissions is coming in the next release.

Page "Permissions" dialog

We have reverted to the two row layout to avoid permission-restriction-inconsistencies, and fixed a few bugs along the way. Most notably, inherited restrictions are now displayed separately from the current level's restrictions, and hidden by default. This avoids cluttering the page with stuff you usually know about already (when working in restricted page hierarchies).

Engine Room

Nothing big went into M7, the super-batching work is ongoing and will mean faster page loads from 3.0-beta1 onwards.

Drag & Drop

The drag and drop feature now looks even better, bugs have been fixed and we have added a dropzone on the attachment screen to make it more obvious that you can actually drag and drop file to this page. (Yes, we also considered many other alternatives, but some were hard design-wise (and we left them for a later major redesign of the lower part of the editor screen), others were considered too subtle, and others were just out of scope (like a separate tab on the image dialog) due to the release being late already.

Please note that the drag and drop feature is not bundled yet, neither in M7 nor in Beta 1. However, we will publish it as part of Beta 2. We've been keeping it under the wraps a bit so the competition can't steal all of our ideas while we're not even shipping them. (smile)

The final addition we're considering for this feature is to enable drag and drop into the new 'Insert Image' (Image Browser) window to help the marketing campaign, but no guarantees are being made at this point.

Small Improvements

The footer is now always at the bottom at the viewport, rather than the bottom of the content. This makes the layout a lot cleaner on short pages:

New improved 'button-esque' design for the "Get more"-link button:

What's next?

Paul is busy building Beta 1 today, and that should hit EAC early next week, and we'll publish that too.

ConText, my previous editor of choice, burnt me when I discovered that its 'Search backwards' function doesn't always find matches. Now I'm searching for a new file editor to do my Confluence support in.

Are there any decent Windows-based editors that you would recommend, or is Cygwin Vim the undisputed king?

I'll be using it for log trawling and editing XML, VM and Java property files. The ability to filter text (eg show only lines containing SEVERE) would be useful, as would colour highlighting for XML and HTML. Also Id like something that won't choke on gigabytes of text.

If anyone has any suggestions, just let me know.










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Quick HOWTO - Confluence testing with Maven

These days, I find it sometimes easier to start Confluence in Maven rather than in IDEA when I want to reproduce test failures. It has a more standard classpath, for example, and matches the behaviour of Bamboo more closely.

Starting Confluence in Maven

Here's how:

Now you can run any acceptance test or tests in IDEA, pointed at this Confluence instance.

Configuring the tests in IDEA

If you're using port 9000 like in the example above, you'll need to change confluence_default.properties to set the port appropriately. The default is whatever some sloppy developer accidentally committed last – usually 8080.

When running the first acceptance test since you set up the instance, it needs to know what version of the functest plugin to install. Set the confluence.version system property in the VM settings of your test's run configuration to upload the right one:

-Dconfluence.version=2.10-SNAPSHOT

The exception you'll get if you don't set this system property is:

java.io.FileNotFoundException: Could not find plugin file Confluence Functional Test Remote API (confluence-functestrpc-plugin:com.atlassian.confluence.plugins:null:jar) to upload
at com.atlassian.confluence.it.plugin.WebTestPluginHelper.installPlugin(WebTestPluginHelper.java:73)
at com.atlassian.confluence.AbstractConfluenceAcceptanceTest.setUp(AbstractConfluenceAcceptanceTest.java:266)
at com.atlassian.confluence.AbstractConfluenceAcceptanceTest.setUp(AbstractConfluenceAcceptanceTest.java:213)
at com.atlassian.confluence.NotificationContentsAcceptanceTest.setUp(NotificationContentsAcceptanceTest.java:29)
at net.sourceforge.jwebunit.junit.WebTestCase.runBare(WebTestCase.java:58)
at com.intellij.rt.execution.junit.JUnitStarter.main(JUnitStarter.java:40)
at sun.reflect.NativeMethodAccessorImpl.invoke0(Native Method)
at sun.reflect.NativeMethodAccessorImpl.invoke(NativeMethodAccessorImpl.java:39)
at sun.reflect.DelegatingMethodAccessorImpl.invoke(DelegatingMethodAccessorImpl.java:25)
at com.intellij.rt.execution.application.AppMain.main(AppMain.java:90)

The 'null' at the end of confluence-functestrpc-plugin:com.atlassian.confluence.plugins means you haven't specified the version number with the system property.

Debugging

You can attach the debugger to Confluence on the port configured in the webapp POM, if you need to. I think it's 5005.

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Retrospective

What's this?

We conduct process meetings every three weeks where we look back at the last three weeks, discuss what is good and what not, and try to improve the situation all the time. Every now and then (after each major release) we take some time to reconsider a larger timespan in order to also tackle the bigger or underlying problems. In Confluence-land this is called Retrospective. We did one four months ago already, this is our second one.

A retrospective is more formal than a normal process meeting, but we try to keep it as simple as well. This time, the process was like this

  • Everyone could prepare history-, good-, bad-cards before the meeting.
  • History cards (yellow) were put onto the whiteboard quickly in two rounds
  • Everyone got to write a few good and bad-cards (green and red), then each one could put his top two onto the wall and explain them
  • We did two rounds of that, additional cards could be written during that time
  • Everyone wrote down 5 votes for each side on a piece of paper (or just took a mental note), and then the voting happened publicly by everyone at the same time. But since everyone had to decide first, the chances of cross-influencing others (donkey-voting) was minimized
  • We counted the votes, and discussed the top 4 good and top 7 bad. The rest will be looked at by Per soon, and then he decided is some more action should be taken.
  • We had the lunch break after the first two red cards, e.g. the collecting and voting and the first part of the discussion before lunch, the majority of the discussion after lunch. That way we didn't have all the discussion at once, which would have been quite exhausting.
  • Altogether we spent about 60 minutes on collecting, 40 minutes on the first part of the discussion, and then another 80 (or so) minutes on discussion after lunch.






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Confluence 2.10 Milestone 5

The Confluence team is proud to present Confluence 2.10 milestone 5. This milestone was deployed to our internal system on Friday and is the final milestone of 2.10 feature development.

This milestone contains many new features and enhancements that you can read about in the release notes - please log any issues you find with the milestone on JAC under the Confluence project as affecting 2.10.

Thanks!

Milestone 5 highlights

Office Connector

  • "View Online" or "View as HTML" link for supported file types on the Attachments screen, Attachments macro, and Search Results. This makes it easy to quickly preview Office files without having to leave Confluence

  • New look for the PPT and PDF flash viewer with a download button, and an improved fullscreen.
  • Conversion Queue for managing performance when you may have a lot of users using the Office Connector.



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Back in Action!

I'm now back in the office again after a 3 month backpacking tour of Europe. I managed 17 countries and had an amazing time, but it's good to be back after living out of a suitcase for so long. It's great to hear that Atlassian meet our amazing growth projections for the financial year and see our new sales process.

I'm looking forward to getting back into everything again. 500+ emails and many, many blog posts...















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Rare Website Luv

Usually we get compliments on our webinars and customer support. Today I got a nice compliment on our website I wanted to share with you all:

Hi Boots.

Thank you for contacting me. Let me congratulate your company for such a good commercial website, it is very simple for costumers to surf though the products information.

Best regards,
Tim













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Annual Sales Target - $10 million

Hello everyone,

We've set the new sales target for this year and wanted to communicate it to you as soon as possible. Given our stronger-than-expected performance last fiscal year and the robustness of our pipeline, we expect to exceed last year's performance by at least 10%. Therefore we have set this year's goal at a conservative $10 million. $10million won't be a cake walk but it's not out of reach for a strong sales team like the one we have here. You will be receiving your individual goals in the next week. In the mean time, keep up the good work and maintain the focus!












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We're halfway into Movember and the Mo Bro's are making some serious progress. Although Sloat has resorted to taking headshots in black and white to increase contrast...and Revo is starting to look more and more like Ron Jeremy everyday.

The Donation Situation

_"Movember is helping to support three vaccine research programs and move 12 new medicines from the laboratory to clinical trials. These may alleviate pain and suffering for the nearly 2.5 million men and their families who are currently facing prostate cancer in the U.S. How else can we say thank you from the bottom of their hearts and ours?" said Dr. Jonathan Simons, Prostate Cancer Foundation President and CEO, "Without Movember, the progress of those projects would have been hindered."
Kudos to the Sydney boys who picked up their game and have now overtaken the San Franciscans in their fundraising efforts._

Mo of the Week

The results are in and thanks to the Survey Plugin it's clear to see that Todd was the clear favourite for the Mo of the Week.

What about the other Mo Bro's?

From the Frontlines at Agile Australia 2009

Last week Nick and I represented Atlassian at Agile Australia 2009.
We had a decent booth in a great location right in-front of the conference doors and also next to the food station.

On the other side of our booth we had thoughtworks who were the major sponsor of the event. They must have had about 20 of their staff members there attending and speaking at the conference, while their booth was predominately occupied by two HR ladies actively recruiting new staff.

Attending the conference were a mix of people new to agile and others already using various agile methods. I came across two types of people:

1. Those using JIRA and wanting a GreenHopper demonstration.
2. Microsoft people who never use our products.

Needless to say I promoted the merits of JIRA+GH to both agile parties with a demo using actual GreenHopper data from JAC. Most customers were amazed at how easy GreenHopper was for agile methods and also how it can do 'KanBan things'. Every now and then people would ask about our other products but as this was an agile conference most of the attention was on JIRA+GH. This also could have been because quite a number of the presenters spoke about using JIRA+GH in their agile tool set - great way to get free plugs!!!

The number of attendees being thrown around at this event were about 300.
Next year they plan to have it at the Hilton hotel and have more speakers/streams and more attendees.

It was a good first conference and I think we should attend again next year.
Many thanks to Nick and Robyn for all their help.

Webinar Feedback

I got this email from a customer and thought I would share it!

Matt, hi

Just a quick note to thank you for the Webinar you hosted today. There was quite a group of us in attendance and it was very informative.

Cheers,
Thomas

New Starters

Today (Monday, April 14), Ted Tencza will be starting as Hosted Team-Lead in Sydney, and Andy Goldman, will be joining the SF Support Team as Sr. Support Engineer.

On Wednesday, Jodette Cleary will be starting as HR Director, and will be in two days a week for the next 3-6 months.

Stay tuned for their first blogs!

Atlassian in HR Awards


Talent have some great Friday afternoon news to share with you! Atlassian has been announced as finalists in 3 HR awards:

You can find out more about the awards by clicking through to the links above. Winners for the HR Leader awards will be announced on the 22nd of October, and winners for AHRI's award on the 11th of November.