One step forward, two steps back
As we are literally sitting here spinning in space on this tiny mote of dust we call home, waiting for that brilliant sun to pop up on the horizon, it's sometimes useful to take stock of our current status and situation, how we got here, and where we're going. This helps us refocus on those goals and objectives that are important and perhaps spend less time on the not-so-important things. We can use reflection in our efforts to contemplate strategies and tactics for reaching our goals, defining new goals, or learning from past mistakes. Ah, the mistakes...
To our current users, we do humbly apologize for the lack of stability in the recent weeks. We sometimes catch ourselves moving too fast to create that next awesome new piece of functionality, and well, unfortunately our users (you) catch us moving too quickly. We've been in such a feverish rush to add every feature we can think of (and then some) to the software and in doing so have sacrificed quality and attention to the details. This of course makes everyone involved sad pandas. :(
Actions speak louder than words, so I won't dwell on this much, but we've made stability and performance our number one concerns (yes I know there are two of them!) moving forward. Our users and their learners (we love you!) are really starting to depend on our easy-to-use charting and performance measurement tools. We get very frequent emails saying how Precision Teaching and Chartlytics are changing peoples lives. So when we have bugs in the software that prevent our users from charting, or even lose some past data (sorry Sorah!), we really do feel like sad pandas.
We should, we can, we must get better at providing a stable awesome performance improvement tool to our users, and we will!
Recently released features
While we were busy breaking the software, we added a lot of cool new features. We've been remiss in telling our users (you) about them and we have plans to include a "Updates" section on the app that provides an ongoing, updated list of new functionality and bug fixes. But in the meantime here's a short list:
- Date output to all chart types - so daily, weekly, and monthly charts can now all display date information
- Chart labels for specifying supervisor, advisor, manager, performer and all those other labels at the bottom of the chart. These can be managed in the Performer->Pinpoint->Settings tab. We know there are a couple of issues with it, but it works for most use cases. (Just don't get too verbose in what you write in those spaces!)
- Export to PNG and PDF - charts can be exported to PDF or PNG. That's been on the chart viewer for a while now, but we didn't really tell anyone about it. We've recently had some requests to add a "Share to Facebook" button, which we think is a cool idea, so we'll be adding social media sharing capabilities in the near future.
- "Chartlytics" analytical data - we added initial analytics/statistics about performer performance on pinpoints. This shows celeration values, bounce, jump, turns, and A.I.M. for each pinpoint. There is a button on the list of Pinpoints for a Performer called "Show Statistics."
- Saved chart preferences - when you turn on/off a chart layer or option, we are now storing that in the user profile so charts will look the same from one session to the next.
- And a whole bunch more!
While we slow down a bit and add a systematic and automatic testing framework to our development process, we are soliciting feedback from our users about new features. The response has been tremendous and I can only say that 2015 is looking to be the Year of the Chart! Here's a few items on our plate for the near term:
- Functional Analysis Charting - a neat mashup of various charts and pinpoints into a cohesive interface to make it easy to use the SCC when performing functional analysis - this will be huge!
- A Performer specific interface with Fluency badges and achievements! See the mockup above!
- A reporting module to create awesome reports of performers progress across a single or all of their pinpoints.
- Enhanced user roles and access control permissions to control which users can access which performers. Very similar to how Dropbox works.
- More charts - someone asked for a yearly chart and a yearly chart they shall have!
- Data Encryption - we're working on incorporating multiple levels of at-rest and in-transit data encryption on our journey towards HIPAA compliance hosting. To avoid HIPAA compliance requirements, just don't tell us anything about your Performers, i.e., name, age, grade. Make up a name, use initials, or even a number (no one is just a number!) for now if HIPAA compliance is a requirement for your business.
- Mobile Timer/Measurement Apps - we're hard at work designing the easiest to use measurement tool for Precision Teaching ever envisioned... ok maybe that's a stretch but we think we have a great idea on how provide a very simple to use measurement recording app that works on most smart phones. Look for a beta of that soon!
- Practice Library - Rick has a ton of science backed learning materials, specifically in computational math skills, reading, and writing/expressions. We're going to be adding those to the app in our "Library" area. There, our users can find practice materials developed strictly within instructional design conventions, practice procedures, fluency standards, and their associated pinpoints.
There are a lot more things to build on the list, but that's the short list. Exciting stuff!
State of the business
We launched our public beta on October 16th, 2014. In the almost 3 months since, Chartlytics has seen and experienced awesome user growth. Check out the image above. It's a current snapshot of our administrative dashboard. We're at 153 organizations with 221 users and 376 Performers with almost 2000 charts and 19,000 measures of performance! ¡Ay, caramba!
What we're really excited about though, isn't the numbers; it's the lives we're helping to change - both of our users and those they serve. We're really looking forward to seeing more of the amazing transformations of those using Chartlytics and hope to share them with you in future blog posts!
All we can say is thank you. Thank you to our users who are entrusting us with such precious responsibility. We won't let you down!
Moving forward, we truly think 2015 will be the Year of the Chart! The year the Standard Celeration Chart comes of age in this world of information technology. The year that teachers and learners all over the world start to realize there is a science to the way we humans learn, and that science is rooted in Precision Teaching and the Standard Celeration Chart!
Cheers! Happy Friday! And as always, Happy Charting!