New updates and improvements to Linear.
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.