Our January champion is Chris Mason – for energetically pushing the project train into motion


We are pleased to introduce Chris Mason in our series of posts to recognise the champs of the Ranger community. WP_20160104_15_16_43_Pro

He’s been nominated by his peers for his energy in the upcoming Import Export Kanban board extension project. He has done a lot of work on the Kanban extension, exploring how we can set up the project using a new process.  He’s worked hard to iron out some frustrating issues, and contributed his learnings to other teams when they needed help.  He truly is a champ!

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We asked Chris why he’s so passionate about his project

I joined this project initially because I saw a need for this kind of capability for my customers. As they are adopting SAFe-like practices and are working within 1 team project with dozens of teams, I saw that this as something they might be interested in using in their environment. In addition, I initially joined this project because I wanted to work on a larger-scale extension compared to some of the smaller ones I had played around with in the past.

However, besides the above, what has really excited me about this project is a lot of the side work we are doing as we are creating this extension. By this, I mean we are using a new way to develop, debug, and test the extension using a modern web toolset: the latest versions of Typescript, npm, Webpack, VS Code, etc. Trying to optimize the workflow for extension development has been a fun experience and I am pretty happy with the results we have come up with so far. We will be blogging about our workflow on this shortly.

What’s coming i.t.o. the Import Export extension?

Edward Fry posted a great overview of what we are planning for the Import / Export Kanban extension and we are approaching our v1 release. This first release will allow users either absorb Kanban settings from another team for all portfolio levels in the backlog, as well as apply their settings to another team. Outside of the storyboard shown in that blog post, we are adding a few additional pieces for this first release such as creating some UX around remapping work items from one set of columns to a new set. This will allow users to determine which columns work items should be mapped to as new columns get applied to their Kanban boards.

What’s planned for the future?

As of right now, our roadmap for this extension extends out several more versions. Future updates will include the ability to export configurations to a file that could be shared online, passed around a company, and eventually uploaded to a team. In addition, we plan to add fine-grained control over what settings to use, which portfolio levels to copy, naming of configurations, import/export across team projects, and more.

Wondering what the project lead had to say about about Chris?

Chris works hard on this project. He has taken the initiative in several areas, including a new extension build setup, mapping work item fields across boards, and wrangling fine points of the extension API with the help of Sondra’s team.  He also covers for me at our weekly scrums, and I really appreciate his overall willingness to help all of us when we get stuck.  In short, Chris is a great team player, and the Kanban project would not be nearly so far along without his passion and dedication. – Edward Fry

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