It’s time to unveil some changes on IvyRoot and invite our next wave of alpha users. Welcome!
We had a lot of really valuable feedback from the first round of usage, and we’ve worked hard to address it.
One of the main things you told us was that it was too hard to get started with IvyRoot… we were expecting you to have to master the art of creating your own report from scratch.
So, the first thing you’ll notice is the 'Get started’ item on the left of the main menu. This introduces you to a gentle and concise wizard that will have your data up and running in, hopefully, just a few moments: it walks you through the main IvyRoot screens from left to right across the menu bar.
We’ve oriented the wizard around the different connectors that are used to collect data. You’ll see them all listed on the 'Connectors’ page.
We’ve focused a lot on social network metrics here, simply because they are easy to understand, and they make good sources of initial data. But there are still many other ways to gather or provision data (in particular, via the powerful API) and trust us – you’ll see us adding many more connectors at a fast rate of knots.
You might also notice we now have native support for OAuth, so we can support things like Google Analytics and Facebook easily – without you having to entrust us with your passwords.
Once you create a connector to gather your data, we’ve added a lot more behind-the-scenes magic. Categories and measures will be automatically created, so you can click through the wizard process and start seeing the reports immediately.
In theory, you won’t need to create any reports of your own… the generic reports should default to view your data quite reasonably. But of course you can, if you like to experiment. We’ll be adding a 'clone report’ feature very soon, so you can take these existing reports and edit them instead of starting from scratch.
Quite a few of the connectors now support retrospective data gathering. Where possible, we’ll go back and fill in data from the past – your Twitter updates for example – so you don’t have to wait too long to see some charts.
Speaking of charts, we now support multi-line line graphs. If your report or chart is scoped to a category-based collection of measures, they will all appear on a single canvas. There’s a nifty little filter to allow you to toggle each line on or off.
You may notice that user profile now has a lot more settings. You can specify your location and web address (which help default some of the connectors), as well as notification settings and start-up options.
But also feel free to try out the new theme feature. You can change your IvyRoot color scheme and add new ones of your own design. It’s a bit of fun of course, but in all seriousness, we think this will become valuable when you want to share branded reports with your colleagues or clients.
(Our favorite theme is 'Tufte’... which might even become the default if you like it too.)
So, I hope you’ll agree… a huge array of improvements all round. If you’re a new alpha user, please let us know your first impressions. If you’re returning, we’d love to know if we addressed your concerns adequately.
Stay tuned for more updates…
(And by the way, our RSS feed is no longer password protected, so you can subscribe to http://ivyroot.com/feed/posts/ as well as, or instead of, these emails.)