Custom Productivity Workflows with Chandler

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Facilitated by Jeffrey Harris, Developer and Mimi Yin, Product Designer, Chandler.

Chandler is an open source Note-to-Self Organizer designed for personal and small-group task management and calendaring, created by the Open Source Application Foundation.

Since our Preview release, we've had a number of users from a wide range of non-profits (ie. universities, other open source projects, summer camps, green technology, etc). Some are using Chandler individually, others have looped spouses and co-workers in to collaborate on projects and day-to-day tasks. You can read some of their stories here.

We will begin with a quick introduction to Chandler and demo what it is capable of today. However, the focus of the talk will be on newly started re-architecture work that will enable Chandler's core note, task and calendar management workflows to become the anchor for a fully extensible and customizable information management platform.

To appeal to both everyday users of the software and developers with a technical interest in the project, the session will be two-part. First, we will walk through some user scenarios and then we will provide a technical overview of the re-architecture work we've been doing.

Part 1: Extending Chandler: Chandler as a Confluence of Workflows You can try out Chandler's core information management workflows in the current 1.0 release: Collecting new information. Triaging tasks. Scheduling and reminders. List management and note-taking. Sharing and collaboration. Still, it was always our intention to build on these workflows to include document management, issue-tracking, and CRM (or to be even more specific, grant proposals, newsletters, and donor profiles).

In this session, we will walk through one scenario that demonstrates how Chandler's workflow can be:

  1. Extended to integrate new kinds of information management into the core workflows mentioned above.
  2. Customized to meet the specific needs of your organization.

Part 2: Extending Chandler: Technical Overview of the Re-Architecture Chandler's re-architecture is focused on providing a framework with:

  1. Events driven by Trellis
  2. Strict separation of domain model, interaction model, and UI
  3. Thorough testing of each layer without depending on higher layers
  4. Thoroughly documented entry_points to make extension writing approachable
  5. Doctesting so documentation is accurate and isn't left for the last minute

The re-architecture project is still in its early days. The current documentation is available, and of course so is the source code.