Spring Hackathon roundup - Pinned Stories, custom Git Branch formatting, a secret (shhh) video game, and more!
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News and Updates

Spring Hackathon roundup - Pinned Stories, custom Git Branch formatting, a secret (shhh) video game, and more!

Tiffany Go
Head of Product Marketing
May 28, 2020

Last week we hosted our third Shortcut Hackathon and our first fully remote one! While circumstances were a little different from our last Hackathon, we brought the same creative enthusiasm and teamwork to the table. The Hackathon commenced on 5/21 and concluded on 5/22 with 3-minute presentations given via Zoom. Prizes were awarded for People’s choice, joy, Kurt’s choice (no, not Kurt Russel, our CEO Kurt), and most ship-able.

In less than 24 hours the team came up with some exciting updates and built solid foundations for new features. Read on to see all the cool things our teammates hacked together during this hackathon.

Pinned Shortcut Stories (Winner: People's Choice - tie!)

Hacker: Ben Wittenberg

Ben created a way to pin Stories to your browser, which allows you to maintain a visible queue of Stories you can go back to easily.

Status: Not shipped.

Pinned Stories

All About Dot (Winner: People's Choice - tie!)

Hackers: Jennifer Scroggins, Courtney McCleve, Melissa Keller, Al Power & Richard Huffaker
This group found a way to infuse more joy into the Shortcut website by creating a website easter egg that triggers a side-scrolling video game featuring the world's most beloved perfectly round mascot, Dot! Check out the video to see the hackathon version of it in action.

Status: Coming soon!


Custom Git Branch Formatting (Winner: Joy)

Hackers: Andrew Childs, Jeremy Heiler & Connie Chau
This project would make it possible for organizations to define and customize how they want their git branch names to look.

Status: Shipped!

Custom git branches

Watching the Lookers - real-time Story viewers (Winner: Kurt's Choice)

Hacker: Osei Poku

Sometimes, spying is a good thing 🕵️‍♀️ Osei created a way for you to see in real-time who's looking at your Stories!

Status: Not yet shipped

See who's viewing a Story

Table Markdown Helper (Winner: Most Ship-able)

Hacker: Kieron Keenan

Kieron added a Table Markdown Helper to the existing Markdown Editor to make it easier to create tables in Shortcut!

Status: Shipped (Woo!)

Table markdown help

Prevent a given PR from moving stories

Hacker: Eli Naher

Eli created a way to customize GitHub integration automation of Shortcut Workflow States. When you have multiple branches connected to a Story, Eli created a way to flag certain Stories from making updates to Workflow States in Shortcut until you are ready to ship.

Status: Not shipped

Shortcut Chrome extension

Hacker: Andrew

Andrew's project allows folks to use the Shortcut Chrome extension to pull up Shortcut and comment on Stories from anywhere.

Status: Not shipped

Shortcut Chrome extension

Standalone Web App

Hacker: Rinchen Havelaar
Rinchen worked on a standalone version of the Shortcut web app so you don't need to search for your Shortcut tabs in a forest of tabs 🙌

Status: Not shipped.

Shortcut Desktop App

Expandable Doc Links in Write

Hacker: Christine Cha & Kieron Keenan

Christine and Kieron worked on an update that would allow you to expand Epics that are linked in a Doc so you can view all the related Stories.

Status: Not shipped

See related Stories with linked Epics in Docs

Mobile Navigation enhancements

Hacker: Jenel Meyers

Jenel worked on updating the mobile app navigation to more closely match the Shortcut web app navigation, making it possible to access Milestones, Projects, and Iterations in the app.

Status: Not shipped

Performance and Backend Projects

Our backend team tackled a host of projects that span performance optimization to automating some of our team's processes so we can build faster and better.

  • Entity history in the Admin UI (Hacker: Francis Avila) See what people did at a specific time period to see what was changed (removed and added) to provide an easier way to look at exactly what happened to a certain entity
  • Transitive Joy (Hacker: Toby Crawley): Toby conducted an experiment in changing the way the web application checks for updates from our servers when the application's tab isn't visible that may reduce the number of requests to our servers by 75% if it is successful. We're testing it on ourselves now.
  • Automated code quality: (Hacker: Toby Crawley) Toby wasn't satisfied with just one project, he tackled TWO. His second project focused on automating some code quality rules for our backend source code.
  • Datomic Query Tool in Admin UI: (Hacker: Daniel Gregoire) Daniel built a Datomic query console into our internal web admin with support for saved Datalog queries and utilities for interacting with the data in the browser’s JavaScript console.

The 2020 Shortcut Hackathon gave us the chance to take a creative break from our roadmap and dedicate time to building things to bring a little joy to ourselves and our customers too. We walked away energized, inspired, a bit tired from shipping so much stuff in less than 24 hours, and more committed than ever to improving the Shortcut user experience and building the best project management platform for software development.

Let us know what your favorite hacks and projects are in the comments or let us know in the Shortcut Slack Community - you may see your favorite Hackathon project in Shortcut!

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