Friday, April 17, 2009 - 17:34
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Several members of our core team just got back from a 3 day CiviCase meetup in beautiful Vancouver, Canada - hosted by Physician Health Program - BC (PHP-BC). Our main goals were:
  • Get face-to-face feedback from PHP staff who are using CiviCase about what's working and what needs improvement in the existing implementation.
  • Do some code sprints to get some quick wins for implementation within the current release cycle (2.2.3)
  • Review the list of candidate features for Phase 2 in order to get a better understanding of the requirements, and discuss a range of implementation "solutions".
  • Prioritize the Phase 2 list and come up with a scope of work and specifications for the 2.3 release.
The PHP-BC staff did a fantastic job of welcoming us, arranging logistics for housing and meeting space, and keeping us well fed (they hosted several incredible lunches and dinners)! We built an agenda that allowed us to get in-depth feedback on the current version, and then follow-up with time to code and share improvements and/or design ideas.   A key take-away for Lobo and myself was the importance of meeting with users to evaluating a major project AFTER they've had some time to work with it. The 6 week gap between when PHP-BC deployed CiviCase and this meetup worked well ... enough time to get a feel for how it's working, but not making users live with major pain points for too long. Kurund and Lobo also managed to code up a really cool general feature which will be part of 2.2.3 and is already available to try out on the public demo - a full-text search box. PHP-BC needed a way to find Activities and Cases with a particular word or phrase in the subject, description or any searchable text fields. The team expanded on this a bit - adding the ability to search text fields in most of the other record types (including Notes, Contributions, Participants and Memberships). This is definitely a phase 1 (relatively simplistic) implementation for this type of searching. It doesn't include indexing or advanced search expressions - and may not scale well especially for larger databases which are not hosted on high-performance servers. However, I think it is potentially VERY useful. Try it out on the demo and tell us what you think! If you want to drill down deeper on CiviCase developments - you can see a rough list of the Quick Fixes (2.2.3/4) and the Next Release Features here. I'll post a second blog shortly with the highlights for 2.3 - and we'll be flushing out specs for the larger pieces over the coming weeks - but you can get a sense of what's coming from this list.


The backend for the autocomplete is not that good and %like% slow ;) Ideally, the name+nick should be full text searchable too X+

This implementation does search contacts on display name and email (and I just added a quick change to include nick name too). :-)