New updates and improvements to Linear. Subscribe to updates
You're now able to favorite projects and have them appear as shortcuts in the sidebar. Simply click the star icon in the header when you're looking at the issues of a project, or open the command menu and select "Favorite project".
Cycles have gained some additional functionality this week. In case your team is on holiday or you want to make room for that Hackathon, you can now move the start time of individual cycles forward (and backward). You can now also give rename cycles to describe what you're working on in each cycle.
We added some preliminary API documentation. You own your data in Linear and our GraphQL API lets you query all of that data. In addition to querying, the Linear has full support for mutating all entities. Any mutations you make via the API are observed in real-time by all clients, giving you immense powers of writing your integrations.
In the months to come, we will improve the API and documentation, but we wanted to give the courageous among you early access to the API. We can't wait to see what you build with it.
If you haven't noticed yet, we're obsessed by speed. We felt that hot reloads could be faster. Hot reloads are reloads of the client where the client doesn't need to do a full synchronization with the backend and they are much more common than cold reloads. We added some clever optimization on how data is deserialized and are now seeing 4x faster hot bootstrap times with around 2000 open issues. The more open issues you have, the bigger the difference is.
You can now quickly search for issues using the command menu. Simply open the command menu and start typing. Search results will appear after all other actions.
Some teams like have dedicated downtime between cycles to "cool down" or catch up on other tasks before jumping into the next iterative development cycle. Linear now supports configuring a cooldown period in the team settings.
Creating new labels is now a lot faster. Previously, one had to jump to team settings to add a new label, but now you can do that straight from the command menu (Cmdk). When you have an issue selected, hit l to add a label to the issues, then select the "Create new label..." action.
Todo lists in issue descriptions have always been a great way to keep track of things that are still needed to be done to complete the issue. Now todo lists have received better styling and more importantly, you can check off individual items without having to go into edit mode.
To create a todo list in an issue description, type "[ ] todo" or press CtrlShift7.
For new designs or bug reports, videos can tell more than pictures or words. Linear now supports video uploads as well as Loom embeds.
To embedd a video, just drag and drop a video file onto the issue description or comment field or paste in a Loom link and it will automatically be embedded.
We want to learn as much as possible from you on how we can improve Linear. We've added an easier way to send feedback from the app sidebar. We also have a new Slack community, the link of which you can find in the settings menu.
In addition to copying the issue id and git branch name, you can now also easily copy a link to the issue. Use the icon on the right corner or use the action menu (copy issue url).
New automation for PR reviews
Linear has supported GitHub pull request automation for opened and closed PRs since day one. We noticed it's common for teams to separate the time they work on an issue, and the time when an associated PR is waiting to be reviewed. You can now automate this by creating a new workflow state (e.g. In Review) and have Linear move issues to it when a review has been requested on an associated pull request.
Linear will now also show when a review has been requested on an associated pul request.
Reopen issue when pull request is reverted
Not all merges go well and sometimes you'll need to revert a merged PR. Linear is now aware of these reverts and will automatically reopen the associated issue so you won't forget about it.
De-associate pull requests from Linear issues
We added new actions to de-associated pull requests from issues. You can find them from the command menu by typing "github".
Pull request links
Lists and board now include links to the associated pull requests. This makes it much faster to open the pull request of an issue, or to glance what issues have PR's open.
Subscribing (Shifts) and unsubscribing (CmdShifts) to issue updates is now built into the issue comment section. You can quickly toggle your subscription and see who else is subscribed to the issue. To keep your team up to date, you can also subscribe others to an issue.
The search view has been redesigned and the search input has been moved to the sidebar. With this change, search is faster to use and you're also able to filter the results of your query the same way as you would filter other views.
Linear has always had basic multi-selection of issues for applying shortcuts and actions to several issues at once. To make this easier and faster, we added more ways to select multiple issues and accidentally discovered even new UI patterns (tweet).
There are now four ways to select issues in list view:
Linear now has better support for boards, with a refreshed design. Unlike lists, which are more information-dense and ordered by priority, boards offer manual ordering via mouse drag&drop.
Similar to lists, boards are grouped by the teams' workflow states and can be filtered using our new filters. You can now also perform keyboard shortcut actions hovering over the card of an issue.
Both active cycle and project pages can now be viewed in board view mode. Just toggle the view from the top right corner, or switch with Cmdb shortcut. To view all your issues in board view mode, select Board option from the team sidebar.
After adding new filters last week we shipped several improvements to them:
meas a shortcut for the current user
The preferences page now features a new look with more information about individual preference options.
Three new personal preferences were added:
Once your team's issue count starts growing, filtering becomes necessary to narrow down the scope of issues that you want to look at or manage. We gained valuable experience from our initial filter design, and wanted to improve the design in two ways:
This week we fully redesigned and reimplemented how filters work. In any view that lists issues - including the board - you can access filter via the f shortcut. Once a filter has been applied it can be removed with the Shiftf shortcut.
Filters are now view based, so you can, for example, apply different filters to "My Issues" and "Active Issues" and jump between these views without losing each filter.
To set direction and long term goals for the team it is often useful to plan larger initiatives or features alongside all the other work that needs to happen.
With Linear Projects, we wanted to make exceptionally easy and fast to create a project, and start refining it as you go. You can optionally set a target date, description, and link to the product spec so that the necessary context is there.
You can break the individual work to multiple Cycles, and make constant progress each week to complete the project.
This is our first release of Projects and we're excited to continue expanding them to make it easier for you to design and build software.
ProTip: If you need to group issues but they are too small to use Projects, you can link them together as sub-issues. Select an issue, and from command menu pick Set parent issue.
Cycles are no longer a developer preview feature and are available to every team. We've added a neat side-bar to the cycle view (Cmdi) that gives you a great overview of the cycle. It helps you figure out where you're at in the cycle and what the workload for each of your team-members looks like.
You can enable cycles in your team settings
Linear was a bit too eager to send emails on unread notifications. We've tweaked the delays to be based on the urgency of the notification.
GitHub integration is one of our time-saving features in Linear. It lets Linear manage the status of issues based on associated GitHub pull requests. Previously, if you had the integration enabled, a pull request would automatically move associated issues into the In Progress status once the PR has been opened, and into the Completed status upon PR merge.
We wanted to give teams more control over their workflows and now you can customize the automation by setting your own workflow status for PR open and merge events. For example, to separate issues waiting for a code review, create a In Review status for your team and associate PR open to trigger this status. You can also omit the automation for each step and configure automation for each team separately.
We also improved how multiple pull requests per issue are treated. If your issue has several open pull requests open, we'll wait for all of them being merged until we trigger the merge automation step.
Cycles are still under active development and available under Developer Preview option in your personal settings. This week we shipped several cycle improvements:
You might know them as sprints, but we decided to call them cycles to give them meaning outside of the agile methodology. Whether you work in agile ways or not, cycles provide a great way of planning and measuring iterative development cycles. Take some time each week (or weeks, depending on how long you configure your cycle to be) to plan what your team is supposed to work on next, then let Linear measure how you're executing towards that goal.
You can enable cycles in your team settings, but need to first opt-in to see Developer preview in your preferences. You'll choose how long each cycle is and what day of the week they start and Linear takes care of the rest. Cycles are automatically created and closed based on the selected schedule and any unfinished work in each cycle will automatically be moved to the next cycle.
You can now opt in to show time estimates for your issues. Estimation complements cycles and lets your team communicate the complexity of each issue.
Turn on estimates in the team settings. You can choose between a number of ways to estimate issues. Use a linear scale, exponential scale, Fibonacci scale, or use T-Shirt sizes to describe the complexity of each issue. Regardless of what scale you choose, cycles will automatically compute the overall effort required to complete the cycle and update its graphs accordingly.
Managing a large number of issues can be challenging if you keep them in one place. We added Backlog as the place for new issues and ideas. These are issues that have yet to be prioritized and put on your team's roadmap. Backlog will show up in the sidebar along with other issue categories. By default you'll have one backlog workflow status but you can add more of them in team settings.
When your team is ready to work on issues in Backlog, move them into Active Issues. To make easy to move issues between Backlog and Active Issues, two new shortcuts are available:
We added "Select All" check-boxes for each issue group which will select all issues in the group. You can (de)select individual issues by un-checking or by pressing
After selecting a group of issues, a new bulk action toolbar will appear at the bottom of the screen to make it easier to perform common actions.
Pro tip: Did you know you can also select ranges with Shift + click?
Keyboard shortcuts have been improved for non-US keyboard layouts. As part of the improvements, a few shortcuts were remapped to different shortcuts:
As part of macOS 10.14.5 Apple tightened security requirements for applications. New version of the Linear desktop app has been notarized to match the requirements. If you had issues running the application before, please download the new version here: https://linear.app/download
The UI is simplified and the drop-downs are replaced with the command menu actions.
The open and closed issue views received UI improvements in the form of grouping headers. While issues have always been sorted primarily based on their workflow status, the new headers make this a lot more clear.
In settings, teams can now define which timezone most of their people are working from. This setting doesn't affect much yet but will be important once you can, for example, define what day of the week a sprint should start on.
On that note, don't expect too many updates in the next few weeks as we're working hard behind the scenes to build out support for our next big features: Backlogs, sprints, and projects.
We re-designed the sidebar to be more compact and scalable for upcoming features. It now shows more information and teams are sectioned better. Under each team, you can find their issues grouped into open and closed views. You'll also have the ability to see all issues in a list in addition to the existing board view.
Together with the sidebar, we improved headers for better navigation and issue counts. We also added issue filters to all list views so it's easier to drill down issues based on different parameters.
To make it faster to copy the issue ID or suggested git branch name, we added icons to the issue view sidebar for them. You'll still be able to get them through the action menu but this change should make copying easier for users who prefer to use a mouse.
This week we made major improvements to the sign in and first-time user experience: everyone in your team will now get an introduction to the command menu and other Linear features.
If you are an existing user, you can initiate first-time introduction through the command menu by searching for "welcome tutorial."
Redesigned the keyboard shortcuts page with a new design and added all the supported shortcuts. Hit
? to bring up the keyboard shortcuts.
Typing : in any of the issue descriptions or comments now brings up the emoji autocomplete.
In addition to the "More actions" message action, you can now open the new issue dialog with
/linear command to file new issues quickly from Slack.
While we don't like seeing loading states in the app, having one for the initial load and browser refresh is necessary. We improved design with a subtle logo animation.
This week we added the ability to create new issues via email. Perfect for when one of your users emails you a bug report. Simply forward it to your team's email address (you can find the correct email address in your team's settings). The subject of the email becomes the issue's title and the body the description.
Boards received some love this week, too. You can now easily archive all issues in a board column using the column's drop-down menu. Perfect for when you want to archive all completed issues at the end of the week. Next to the drop-down menu, there's a nifty short-cut to creating new issues for the column.
You can now use the command menu to jump directly to an issue if you now it's identifier. For example, if you type
lin-123, the command menu will search for an issue with that identifier and let you instantly navigate to it.
Settings views have been combined into one area. This makes navigating personal and team settings easier. GitHub and Slack integration capabilities are also explained in more detail.
We added emails for unread notifications. They are only sent if you were to miss them in the desktop app. We do want to keep your email inbox for more important messages.
Desktop notifications have been redesigned so that titles and descriptions are easier to read. Issues marked as Urgent will also require user interaction as we don't want you to miss them.
Those of us who grew up with IRC, forums and games, we love display and nicknames. To give more control over display and real names in Linear, we added a setting to prefer one or the other. If you use display names, you can still see the other user's real name in their profile by clicking the name.
gitbranch name generation by changing format and breaking at full words.