Archive for November 16, 2017

Thursday, November 16, 2017

FogBugz Becomes Manuscript

Anil Dash (Hacker News):

At Fog Creek, we’re a company that was pretty much born to help squash bugs, whether it’s “this doesn’t look right in my browser!” or “we shouldn’t be secretly polluting the earth!” We launched FogBugz back in 2000 as one of the first and most influential bug-tracking systems around, and it evolved to be great at project management, issue tracking, and lots more. Since it launched, the platform has been used to fix over 50 million bugs, by tens of thousands of teams around the world. But recently, we’ve been thinking about “Big Bugs”, trying to imagine how we can address both the necessary parts of shipping software and the larger risks that too often get overlooked.

So today, we’re using that same engine to create something new: Manuscript. Manuscript helps any team craft great software.

I find this rather confusing because Manuscript seems extremely similar to FogBugz, which it replaces. The core design and features seem to be the same. I guess this is good because I like FogBugz. The new name doesn’t make much sense to me, though I can live with it. The differences, as far as I can tell, are a visual redesign and a bunch of new integrations:

Our new Twitter integration for Manuscript enables you to monitor Twitter for tweets that mention the keywords you’re interested in, like @mentions and hashtags, creating a case for each match. This is great for Support teams, so you can manage your Twitter queue right from within Manuscript. And it’s good for Product Management teams too, who can add tweets about features and bugs as subcases, helping you gather requirements and prioritize feature work.

I don’t need any integrations and would have preferred to see improvements to the core product. There are a variety of longstanding problems with e-mail handling, and the basic case editing and wiki could use some attention. It also doesn’t officially support Safari.

The main complaint I have about Manuscript is the new design. Everything is more saturated and colorful, and the color choices are odd. The logo looks like an optical illusion. It’s all very distracting. It doesn’t look like a professional product for getting work done. Despite being redesigned, the main page’s elements are not fully consistent, and it clashes with less frequently used configuration pages, which have not been redesigned. The new product site is also oddly designed, with an unstable menu of features that is difficult to scroll through. I just don’t understand why these changes were made. The previous Ocelot design was fine and continuing to improve.

I set up a Customization, included below, that changes the colors and lines to be more subdued. It also changes the font from Benton Sans to San Francisco and removes the avatar images. I don’t need to see five copies of my face on every page. I also removed the RSS and Subscribe links, which I never use. Lastly, there’s some JavaScript to restore keyboard shortcuts, which were inexplicably removed in 2013, for moving up and down the case list. I’d like to make more changes to the CSS to improve the information density, but that will take a lot longer.

name:        Boring Colors and Fonts
description: Change text to be less garish. Hide avatars. Add next/prev keyboard shortcuts.
author:      Michael Tsai


$(function() {
    var isOcelot = function() {
      return (typeof fb.config != 'undefined');
    var changeIt = function() {
        // Previous Case: Control-Shift-[
        // Next Case: Control-Shift-]
        $('#case-lightbox-wrap > div > > > div > section > article > nav:nth-child(1) > > a.icon.icon-case-prev').attr("accesskey", "[");
        $('#case-lightbox-wrap > div > > > div > section > article > nav:nth-child(1) > > a.icon.icon-case-next').attr("accesskey", "]");
    if (isOcelot()) {
        '/nav/end': function(event) {
    else {


To Do:
- SVG icons and arrows.
- Possibly tighten up spacing.

.case-header-block a,, 
#filter-bar #filter-description .filter-description-sort-element .filter-sort-clickable,
#filter-bar #filter-description .filter-axis-clickable,
.case-list th .header-sort-toggle,
.case-list .grid-column-header-drag-helper .header-sort-toggle,
.case .corner,
.event .timestamp,
.event #labelFileUpload,
.event .emailFields,
.event header .changes,
.case-list .list-group-footer>.list-add-case
    color: black;

.case .left a, /* Release Notes */
.case .left #sidebarSubscribe span /* Subscribe */ {
    color: black;
    border-bottom-width: 0;

.case .left a {
    text-decoration: underline;

#filter-bar #filter-description .filter-description-sort-element .filter-sort-clickable,
#filter-bar #filter-description .filter-axis-clickable {
    border-bottom: 1px solid black;
} .event-content {
    background: #eee;

.event .editor > textarea:active, .event .editor > textarea:focus, .event .editor > {
    box-shadow: 0 0 0 1px black;

.case-list th .header-sort-toggle, .case-list .grid-column-header-drag-helper .header-sort-toggle {
    font-weight: 600;

th .header-sort-toggle,
.event .timestamp,
.event .emailFields {
    font-family: -apple-system-font;

.case .left .rss,
div#sidebarSubscribe {
    display: none;