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Welcome to the new agile world


Seems like Claris Inc. is running like crazy and got much more productive the last months.

Instead of waiting a year for changes to show up, things are now going much more quickly. New stuff shows up every few weeks.

Looks like they have dozens of projects running in parallel. We saw a few things publicly announced in the vision webinar recently. Since we are taking part in testing and we develop plugin, we can already try a few things coming closer to release. Keep an eye on the announcements and future roadmap videos from Claris. Although at the current pace, a release may come before that.

What does agile development mean?
Projects are run with parallel developments in various area, separated in source code branches. Usually every 2 weeks a sprint ends and the project managers prioritize items for the next sprint. They schedule the work for the developers and review progress. When things are ready, they get merged in the main branch and go in the next release. Otherwise they stay in the backlog and may get more attention in the next sprint. Instead of having features planned a year in advance, Claris can now go within a few months from planning to shipping.

A consequence of that is that new features are not as old as they used to appear. You may see things labeled preview over several versions until the feature is completed. Be sure to try new features and report issues as soon as possible, so you can get a bug fix for the next release. With 3 or 4 releases a year, we may get used to upgrade your FileMaker installations much more often.

For a plugin developer, we may see more often changes to the plugin interface. A new SDK may now come for every new release within a year. And you may need to follow closer with the plugin versions to the releases as we can't make sure our current plugin may load in a future release. Often not a bug directly, but more likely, the plugin may make assumptions about the environment, which may no longer be true. We fix those things as we notice them, but we may not put them in the release notes beside some note like "Updated to newer plugin SDK". Don't expect old plugins to work and enjoy the new versions coming!

And now we wait for the next FileMaker version to enjoy our plugin even more.
26 03 21 - 12:21