Guido Stevens: Quaive Roadmap 2025

published Oct 05, 2023

Talk by Guido Stevens at Plone conference 2023, Eibar, Basque County.

Quaive is an intranet for Plone. First full version is from 2015.

This summer we did a full redesign and rewrite of the notifications in Quaive. For various categories you can choose how you want to receive notifications.

We have a lot on our plate, for example:

  • Componentization and design system
  • Collaborative editing, Johannes will talk about this after my talk.
  • Search subsystem. Solo upgrade. Do we need an AI search? Also panel discussion after Johannes' talk.

Consultant-ware is bad business: you treat Plone as a half product, and promise the customer to build the other half. Instead we prefer a high-quality out-of-the-box base product that you can extend if needed.

There is a trade-off between customisability and a good UX. Between cheap, fast and quality you can choose two. I have seen customisation as quality, but really this is a fourth dimension. We do not want cheap customisations, which are really hacks. We need to build a proper solution into a product. This can still be fairly easy: a custom theme. Or a general product usable by all customers.

Commercial open source. If we see a bug in the base product that we want to fix, it is stuff we decide on, so we pay for it. The customer gets no extra bill, it is covered in their subscription. If the customer sees a bug that they want us to fix, then they pay for it.

Reframe the conversation. Developers can think in terms of costs and development time of a feature. The customers care about the value that a feature brings. We should think beyond coding for money. If you are here for the money, you should leave, because you can make more money outside of open source.

You have four organisation types:

  • Blue: machine bureaucracy, top down, control, efficiency, protocol focus, inward looking. In tenders you need to check all the boxes, otherwise you do not get this customer. Optimised towards efficiency.
  • Orange: effective organisation. Sales. Rules are important, but results are more important. Goal seeking. These customers always want more features. Outward looking, but still control. Optimised towards opportunity.
  • Then comes the big shift, with bottom-up empowerment.
  • Green: professional organisation. Self-managing teas, consensus drive, it is about people and feelings, trust. The people who do the actual work are more knowledgeable than their managers, who are there to make things work smoothly. Tech agnostic. Inward looking and empowerment focused. Optimised towards trust.
  • Yellow: network organisation. Fluid and networked, project structure, win-win value creation. There is often more value than money. Outward looking and empowerment focused. Optimised towards innovation.

Really every organisation needs all these layers: blue, orange, green, yellow. How does Quaive do this?

  • Blue: document management, news items (top down)
  • Orange: to-do app, process support
  • Green: conversations, workspaces, global activity stream, groups
  • Yellow: where is the knowledge: see who is specialised in a subject. Open networking.

Integrate this with "pervasive affordances", something you have throughout the stack: tagging, linking, conversation, search, etc.

Quaive project roadmap: agile project management. Kanban boards, roadmap timeline, live progress data instead of strict planning, project analytics. New pervasive affordance needed: make everything actionable. This gives more process support, which is mainly for orange organisations, but every organisation needs it to some extent.