alexhk
We have been testing TheBrain for a few weeks now. Here are some bugs.

(1) Fatal: Co-Edits are getting overwritten without any warning

For instance:
  • User A changes Thought name from "Thought XXX" to "Thought YYY".
  • A little later user B changes Thought name from "Thought XXX" to "Thought ZZZ".
  • There is no conflict warning.
  • There is nothing visible in the log

(2) Also, the log/edits should be displayed somewhere prominently by default, not needing to do the following:

- Manually change to report tab
- Selecting data range
- Selecting modified type
- Refreshig

And every time you need to run some other report, you need to repeat that.

(3) Sync issues / hanging application

I am in Hong Kong, so far away from the US servers. However, we have the fastest internet in the world (google it) and we do not have any difficulties to access servers in the USA. Having said that, TeamBrain often cannot sync to your servers and shows a corresponding warning. I understand that there is not a lot you can do about connectivity issues (not convinced it really is a connectivity issue).

The main problem is that if it happens, TeamBrain basically hangs. When you close the application, it disappears out of the users sight (ie. no more TheBrain in the task bar). If you look at the task manager however, you see it's still running, presumably trying to keep the sync going. After a while, the user is reminded that TheBrain is still running and hanging, by an error message popping up. During such a state, the user can't restart it, and it won't sync, and it can't be shut down properly I guess. I found myself killing it with the task manager a couple of times during the test period.


(4) Other bugs:
  • Background always shows up again after a while, even if removed via Preferences (we had to set a small white 16x16 pixel PNG to keep the test background away, it always showed up again, no matter what we tried)
  • If thought name is changed, the child with comma does not (ie. child is called "NameA, Challenges". When parent renamed to "NameB", child still stays "ChildA, ..." )
  • Cannot see who/when made edit/addition, overwrites conflicts without warning (ie. user A edits Thought AAA to Thought BBB. User B changes to Thought CCC at the same time without knowing) (mentioned above)
Wishlist:
  • Tag hierarchy would be great (kind of like Super Type/Type for Thoughts)
  • WishList Meta data (ie. to score certain options and then only show thoughts with score of >3, for decision making)
  • When creating thought and typing, show search results with (partial) path to thought, ie. "My Brain > Thought Name". Will easy finding the right thought if there are many with similar names

With the two first points not addressed, we may not be able to license TeamBrain. I may however use a personal copy since we've already entered a lot of data.

Alex
TheBrain Pro 8.0.0.7 (TeamBrain)
Java 1.7.0_45
Windows 7 64 Bit
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mcaton
Alex,

Thank you for the feedback. Regarding the multiple users syncing to a single Brain, please keep in mind that the time stamp of the specific modification will always be the decision maker when overwriting.  For this reason, in a TeamBrain environment, it may be best for you to turn on your Auto Sync feature.  This way, you'll always be seeing the most up to date content for each Thought, before making new changes.

Regarding your concerns with the Brain Reports, there a many different types of report combinations that can be executed.  What may seem logical for your usage, might seem too detailed to another user.  Fore this reason, we keep the default settings at a minimum, and you can then filter with your appropriate layers.  Also, have you tried creating a Custom Report?  You can apply your own set of desired filters and then save the Custom Report to run again quickly in the future as your Brain continues to evolve.  This may be a nice time saver for you.

Also, please know that we are continuing to improve the sync technology and the speed at which syncs take place.  We recently rolled out a new update on our servers that greatly improves sync speeds.  Another thing to be aware of is sync traffic.  As a general rule, Monday mornings are quite busy and there will be many syncs in the server queue.  Friday nights and weekends the sync queue will be rather low.  This info may help you decide when you want to do a larger sync.

And finally, we're aware of some issues with Brain backgrounds not updating and we are working on a permanent solution.  Glad to hear that you found the quick workaround for this.  The comma trick you mentioned (changing the parent name = changing the child names) is on our feature request list.

Also, one thing you may want to try is keeping track of your teams changes in each Thought's notes section.  It is true that the reports do not keep historical track of ALL changes made to specific Thoughts, but if this information is important to you, maybe a systematic procedure of "signing and time stamping" in the notes area of each thought may be quick fix.  I realize this would be another step, but I just wanted to share any ideas since this feature does not currently exist.  I'll add this (and your other wishlist items) to our feature request list as well.

Thank you,
Matt
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