Release 1.5.10

This minor release fixes a small bug in which write-in survey answers were being left out of the “this is what you said” copy-and-paste display users can see (if you want them to) after they submit their story(ies). That’s it!


As always, if you find any bugs, please report them on the GitHub issues page.

Release 1.5.9

This “clarity” release improves various usability aspects of NarraFirma.

Most importantly, I added page descriptions to each section page (Planning, Collection, etc). These descriptions used to be in popup “tooltips” that appeared when you hovered over page links. However, it did not seem like people were doing that. So I moved them to texts that always appear after each link. If you find these new explanatory texts annoying, you can turn them off using a new project option in the Project administration / Project options page. I also went through and improved all of the page descriptions, so that they explain more clearly why you would want to use each page.

Other improvements in this release mainly have to do with colors (some of the more annoyingly bright colors have been toned down) and links (which now show hover-over, or focused, boxes to make it more clear what you are about to do). Oh yes, and the section pages now have images that match the home-page diagram, rather than just the boring old name of the section.

narrafirma changes

I think this will be a more grounded way to look at each section and make the whole experience feel more coherent.

And as usual I found and fixed a few small bugs.

As always, if you find any bugs, please report them on the GitHub issues page.

Release 1.5.8

This minor (but again critical!) release does two things: adds the ability to import annotations from a CSV file, and fixes a bug in which the buttons that add questions to a story form didn’t work when the story form was brand new. It was an oversight in testing and is now fixed.

NF really needs a tester who is not the same person as the developer. Developer testers always miss things.

As always, if you find any bugs, please report them on the GitHub issues page.

Release 1.5.7

This minor (but critical!) release fixes a longstanding bug in the WordPress version of NarraFirma that nobody noticed until today, when a user discovered and posted the issue. On the NarraFirma WordPress options page, if you entered a WordPress user id or role in the “read access” field of a project, and then deleted that id or role, NarraFirma granted anonymous read access to the project. This bug is now fixed.

We never thought to test this use case. More importantly, it never occurred to us that the HTML form on the NF settings page would return a blank string (instead of a null or other non-data result) when the user deleted the contents of a field. Because the user id of an anonymous WordPress user is not “anonymous” (or, again, null) but a blank string, the two fields matched up. Now NF specifically checks for an empty read-access permission string. We apologize for this mistake and hope that it has not affected any other WP-NF installations to date.

Note that this problem has never existed in the Node.js version of NF, in which an anonymous user is called “anonymous” and an empty permission string cannot be stored.

As always, if you find any bugs, please report them on the GitHub issues page.

Release 1.5.6

This minor (but critical!) release fixes a nasty bug I discovered while improving the help system. A few releases back, when I added an option to set the width of text input fields, I accidentally disconnected the story-name field from its on-change method. This could cause the survey to refuse to save a story (because it thought the story had no name). I am surprised, and sorry, that I made this mistake, and I’m also very surprised that I didn’t catch it in my testing. It’s fixed now, but the whole thing does make me think that automated regression testing ought to move up in the NF priority list for next year.

There are a few other, smaller bug fixes in this release, plus improvements to the help system, which was what led me to find the nasty bug in the first place. All of this was prompted by some excellent feedback from a NarraFirma user, who suggested clarifications in the help system and found one of the smaller bugs. Thank you, user :)

As always, if you find any bugs, please report them on the GitHub issues page.

Release 1.5.5

This minor (but critical!) release fixes a bug I recently introduced into NarraFirma’s WordPress PHP code. When you installed NarraFirma and clicked on the “NarraFirma” line on your WordPress dashboard, you might have seen a blank screen, and you might have seen the error “Call to undefined function.” This bug is now fixed. I extend my apologies to anyone who got stuck on it and my thanks to the NF user who reported it.

As always, if you find any bugs, please report them on the GitHub issues page.

Release 1.5.4

This minor release fixes a small bug I noticed while looking back over the blog post from version 1.5.0.

Did you notice it? Go back and look. In the unlumped graph, the two bar counts are 7 and 8. In the lumped graph, the combined count is 17. It should be 15. I can’t believe I didn’t notice that before.

When a person clicks on an answer, creating a dictionary entry, and then clicks the checkbox off again, the dictionary entry is not removed; it’s just set to false. In my new lumping code I accidentally tested whether the dictionary entry existed for the answer, not whether the value both existed and was true. The result was some slightly-off lumped counts, like in the 15-17 example. Sorry. It’s fixed now.

As always, if you find any bugs, please report them on the GitHub issues page.

Release 1.5.2

This minor release improves NarraFirma’s clustering interface, which is used in planning and catalysis.

1. I removed the row of buttons under the clustering space and replaced it with a things you can do box and a “Do it” button (the same as on the “Explore Patterns” page).

New clustering actions

I like making these drop-down boxes because (a) rows of buttons tend to blur together and (b) it’s hard to explain complex tasks in the few words that fit onto buttons.

2. I shrunk the cluster-name bubbles so that they no longer look like containers into which you should place the things you are clustering. That was a mistake on my part. Making those bubbles so big made it seem as if you had to push all of the items in each cluster inside its bubble. But actually, NarraFirma’s clustering algorithm works by connecting each item to the closest cluster name.

So I changed the interface to show connecting lines between items and clusters. Now when you click on an item, NF shows you the closest cluster name with a dashed line, like this. Showing link between item and cluster

As you drag the item around, its connecting line will “walk” across the screen, from one cluster name to the next, until you let it go.

When you click on a cluster name, NF will show you which items are connected to it, like this.

Items connected to cluster

So now, as you click and drag items and clusters, you can see how they connect to each other. This should help to speed up the clustering process.

2. You can now reorder the clusters (headings) in your catalysis report using a popup dialog with a list and arrow buttons, instead of by laboriously typing in each order number yourself. That was pretty annoying.

Reordering clusters

Finally, I found and fixed a few bugs in this release.

Most importantly, NarraFirma will now display any HTML error message it receives in response to an HTTP request. Previously it simply failed to load when it got an HTML response, because it was expecting to receive a JSON response. Now it will show you the HTML error message, and you can post a screenshot. (You could have seen the error message in the debugger before, but now it will be easier to see.)

As always, if you find any bugs, please report them on the GitHub issues page.