November 2019 Product Updates

As we draw to the end of the year a lot of our time is being spent in a kind of clean up mode.

Yanno! Getting rid of the smaller stuff. Clearing out the old backlog of the hundreds and hundreds of much smaller but equally important tasks.

Don't get me wrong, they're building some awesome biiiiiiiig things that'll ship in the new year. The great side benefit to tackling some of the smaller stuff is we'll be able to kick into the new year with our usual HelpDocs pizzaz ✨

That said, alongside countless bug fixes the team also managed to ship a much requested update to how we do permissions. And they put aside their hefty workload to build a landing page for our new Demos. It’s like Christmas came early 😍 🎅

So without further ado. Here are all the things that shipped in November 🚚

Default Category Permissioning

This has been on the roadmap for a long long time. And it’s not been put off because the team didn’t want to do it.

On the contrary!

The team knew they needed to put some time and thought into how we would actually bring default permissioning to the software.

We didn’t want to create unnecessary restrictions. We don’t believe everything inside a category should have the same permissions. But of course being able to set a default for that category would be a huge time saver.

So we did that! 🔒

Category permission defaults and article overrides
Override category defaults permissions on an article by article basis

With default category permissions you preset permissions for articles added to that category.

Manage article permissions modal
Replace existing permissions with category defaults

It was really that simple in the end. The most important thing is that defaults can be overridden on an article by article basis. Because it makes more sense that way 🙃

A Brand New /demo page

For me, one of the most exciting things we shipped in November was a renewed focus on demos. 📽️

Ok so that’s more a strategy thing but there was a product side to this! Because alongside our shift in gear we shipped a brand new landing page connected to Livestorm. So y’all can sign up and see sessions that are coming soon 🙃

HelpDocs Demos Signup Page
Signup for a walkthrough and learn a bunch about how to use HelpDocs

We’re having a lot of fun with the demos. Even while we play around with the format a little, they’re being pretty well attended and I can see us doing a lot more down the video route into next year.

Smaller but no less important

This is Your URL. We added an improvement to the meta/slug editor so now you can see your whole URL preview. It’s a great way to find out what URL the  article will use without publishing first 👀

Your translation no longer translates. With multilingual, we now automatically highlight when a default article has been updated but translations haven’t. This is a switch from when we didn’t do that and you didn’t really know whether an article had been updated. 🗣️

Bringing Cmd-f to life. A few of you had expressed a slight niggle that you couldn’t use browser-based search tools in the HelpDocs block editors—Markdown, HTML, Code blocks. Basically anywhere you have the black codemirror theme! As usual we listened 👂 And we shipped support for Cmd+f (Ctrl+f in Windows) searching inside the text editor. You are so welcome! 🔍

Fixes & Improvements

The Permission Group Lie. Adding permission groups to invited users wasn’t assigning users to those groups after they were invited. That’s not what we were going for. We like it when things do what they say! So we fixed it 🔒

Privately Published not Published Privately. When you want to publish privately it’s usually because you want it to be private. Well, there was a slight issue with that. The issue being we weren’t letting you select Private in the text editor. Don’t worry though! We fixed it 🧰

Tag You’re Not It. Tags weren’t working. You couldn’t add new tags in the article editor. It was doing some weird stuff like counting but not actually letting you add new tags. Anyways, point is tagging’s fixed 🎟️

Add a Tag Add a Tag Add a Tag. There was a Super obscure bug where if you had one tag in your account and it was already selected the tag dropdown showed "add a tag" a couple times. It wasn't a great user experience.

Instant Collapse. There was a fun bug feature where pressing a button in the search bar on Curve collapsed top articles into a vertical list. In the end it didn’t look very nice so we made that not happen. 📝

Is This the Search You’re Searching For? There was an interesting thing happening where instead of showing you the query you were searching we showed what we thought you were searching for. Unsurprisingly this was both unintentional and confusing for users. 🤦‍♂️

Back in my Day. Some of you eagle eyed lovelies might have noticed that the stats date picker let you select any historical date. Cheeky! Since historical data is actually limited by subscription plans. It’s fixed now. 😆

Error. Can’t Delete! You might’ve noticed you can’t delete categories that aren’t empty. If you hadn’t noticed, hopefully you have now since we added an error when you try to delete anyway ⚠️

Fix toolbar responsiveness. We made a few cheeky updates to how the toolbar looks in different size browsers.

Forever Permissioning Filters. A bug was stopping users being able to deselect permission groups in filter views. We found it. We squashed it. Bug is now mush. 🐛

Warning! Do You Really Wanna Do That? People use JWT SSO because it’s super secure and versatile. But when you make changes—like regenerating the JWT secret key—things can go a little out of whack. It’s ok. We’ll warn you when you’re gonna do something that might break all the things 🚨

Finding our Alignment. We noticed a weird style thing where buttons in the Content part of the dashboard weren’t aligning without a Permissions indicator. We made it beautiful again. Though hopefully you didn’t notice in the first place 🤷‍♂️

The Great Pixel Drop. Colored text was showing a couple pixels lower in articles on V4 Bars. It was hard to notice. But it was there. Now it’s not. So there’s no need to look 🙈