In this first edition of our new series of bi-weekly product updates, we will be covering the following topics:
- Public Product Roadmap
- Communication and Invitation to Dialog
- Packages and Package Developers
- Product Management - A Familiar Face Returns to Umbraco HQ
Public Product Roadmap
As announced at the Gold Partner Summit and during Codegarden in May 2019, we are making our product roadmap publicly available and I’m happy to announce that the first version is now live on our website.
As you probably know, predicting the future is a tough discipline in any profession - also when it comes to the evolution of software products, which often leads to changes over time with new learnings and changes in priority. This will also be the case for our roadmap. But we promise we will be fully transparent in our communication on the evolvement of the roadmap and any changes to previous versions. How? Read more about that under “Communication and Invitation to Dialog” later in this blog post.
Roadmap: Now - Next - Later
Roadmaps come in many shapes. For Umbraco, you can already get detailed information from our release overview for work in progress - so this is not what the Roadmap will be concerning. For the roadmap, we’ve chosen a more high-level approach by using a Now - Next - Later format, often used in Agile Development, as an easy overview of our current and upcoming priorities:
- Now are projects currently undergoing active development.
- Next are projects we are currently maturing and are expecting to pick up soon.
- Later are projects we expect to get to in the future, but we don’t yet know fully how we will approach them.
As projects move from Later through Next to Now, they will be refined and matured, which includes collaboration with our community and partners either directly or through our issues tracker and in RFCs (Request for Comments). We do this to ensure we bring you maximum value in the shortest amount of time.
Projects and initiatives do not always follow the chronological flow and may skip a step or be introduced directly in “Now” or “Next” should they be of higher priority.
Delivered since Codegarden and the Gold Partner Summit
Since we shared our first Roadmap at the Gold Partner Summit, we’ve delivered two important releases:
- We’ve released Umbraco version 7.15, the last planned minor version of Umbraco 7.
- We’ve released Umbraco version 8.1, a big update containing content migration from Umbraco 7 to 8, important updates based on 8.0 feedback and security improvements.
Other updates to the roadmap since Codegarden
- The project formerly known as Grid 2.0 has been split into an Improved Rich Text Editor initiative currently in progress (Now) and a new Block Editor (Next).
- The expected launch of Umbraco Headless has been moved to Q4 2019 given additional improvements that we want to include before the final release.
A Roadmap History subpage will be published soon so you’ll also be able to get an overview of completed tasks/features.
Communication and invitation to dialogue
We want to hear from you, and I want to hear from you. Therefore, do not hold back on reaching out whether it’s related to the roadmap, process or available products. Use the issue tracker, use face-to-face at any event where we might meet or use firstname.lastname@example.org, which we use as the shared entry point for product related conversations.
To keep you further updated on what’s new from Umbraco HQ D-team on topics like the roadmap, releases and other initiatives, we expand our communication with this new bi-weekly blog post (this is the first version) here on the official Umbraco Blog, with the purpose of transparency and rapid updates on any deliverables or changes. Feedback on this new format is welcome either directly or by using email@example.com.
Packages and package developers
Another topic that I want to address in this update is our handling of Packages and Package developers, specifically in relation to our release of Umbraco 8, which we’ve received a good amount of criticism for - and rightly so.
We didn’t give the package developers enough attention or information to allow them to properly prepare for the release of Umbraco 8, contrary to our own intentions. I would like to formally state that packages and package developers are obviously very important and valuable to Umbraco and we are therefore working on several initiatives to prevent that from happening again.
We are currently looking at which initiatives to take other than the obvious of improving our communication. We are certain that you as package developers have some thoughts and ideas as to how we can improve on this so please let us know by reaching out on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Product Management - A familiar face returns to Umbraco HQ
As the Umbraco project has grown in size and complexity over the years, so have our processes. We have for some time known that we needed to have staff dedicated full time on product management and product development.
It is therefore with great pleasure that I can announce that Rune Hem Strand is re-joining Umbraco HQ in a role as Product Owner. Rune has a long and impressive track record working with Umbraco. He has previously been working with everything from documentation, on-boarding, training and developer certification in Umbraco and thus has a great range of Umbraco knowledge and expertise.
With the addition of a Product Owner to the D-team, we will have more capacity to gather all your input, increase and improve our product-related communication, mature upcoming initiatives in collaboration with partners and community and finally, more time to catch up on the adoption and success of all the initiatives already delivered.
We welcome Rune to the D-team and Umbraco HQ on August 5th 2019.
That’s all for now, stay tuned for the next update in two weeks and please feel free to reach out to email@example.com with any feedback on today's update.