Little Update #4

See, new branding on here as well

I told you we’d have one of these out before we went to Paris and here it is! Are you proud of me? Please, I’d just like a bit of positive reinforcement.

Little Updates

What’s Next?

We’ve got some early feedback from our Projects and Saved Settings launch that we want to jump on and some housekeeping over the next few days (as we are off on a bit of a family holiday)

When we get back, we are working on a more granular notification system for each check, you’ll be able to select more specific senarios for a check to notify you (and at what severity) and if that doesn’t excite you.. then you are pretty normal because let’s face it, nobody should get excited about features on a monitoring tool

Family Updates

  • I’m now the dad of a four year old
  • Saturday was a two party day for the girls, with Scarlett having a soft play party (#neveragain) in the afternoon then the evening the girls had a joint party with friends.

Next Family Trip?

We are heading to Disneyland Paris as the final part of Scarlett’s Birthday (and one of the many excuses we make as to not buy her a ‘big present’.)

We think this time Scarlett will FINALLY be tall enough to ride on Tower of Terror, Star Tours and Big Thunder Mountain so it’s an exciting trip for us

Last week we had a great time at the Harrogate Indoor Funfair.

Sadly, It’s becoming more and more likely that our China trip will have to be cancelled if not significantly changed, we are reading the news everyday and we’ve agreed to make the decision in the next 4 weeks.

LittleShoutOut

This is where we try and highlight something every week that we didn’t create in the hope it gets some attention from other people (and they aren’t a usually a client so THIS ISN’T A PAID LINK JOHN..

This week, there was no other person we could give a shoutout to other than Rachel!

She did the amazing work on the new Little Warden Logo and it was a pleasure working with her.

You should get in contact with her.

That’s a wrap!

Support times will be delayed this week whilst I’m queuing for yet another ride on the It’s a Small World.. in the World.

Thanks

Real Dom, Heather, Scarlett and the newly looking goood Robot Dom

You want Projects? You’ve got Projects

ANOTHER blog post this week, We really are on fire!

We get a LOT of feature requests at Little Warden and generally they are great ones and we want to build them as soon as we can.

With some feature requests, we know exactly what people want from them and we can implement as soon as the schedule allows, like our Google Sheets Integration.

However some features are a bit more diffcult to either implement or understand the use case, we often get requests for Google Data Studio integration but we’ve yet to have a customer tell us exactly what data they want and how they’d use it!

Introducing Projects (lite)

Projects are a lot like Google Data Studio, it’s not that it’s a difficult feature to build, it’s just that Projects mean so many different things to different people and we could spend months building an all-in solution of how we want people to use projects when based on previous experience, it doesn’t matter how WE want people to use features, they will tell us how they use it.

So today we are launching a very light implementation of Projects, you can add/remove URLs to a project and they act as a search filter.

URLs can only be added to one project but you can have URLs from the same site in different projects.

Once we’ve got feedback and useage stats from this feature, we can start implementing some of the advanced functionaility such as project rulesets and notifications but we wanted to get this first step live quickly

One of the downsides of being a small team is you have to prioritise so this feature (which has been requested a fair amount) has taken a bit of time for us to get to.

I hope you’ll get value out of Projects and feedback to us what you’d like to see. We do listen!

Thanks a lot

Dom

Say Hello to Robot Dom (and the new Little Warden)

Today, we are showing the world TWO new bits of design that we are VERY proud of.

Robot Dom and our new Little Warden logomark.

Robot Dom

Since we came up with the concept of Robot Dom we’ve wanted to give him a face, we’ve tried several iterations of this but it was always one of those things that ‘We don’t know what we want, but we sort of know what we don’t want

In early January I saw down and write an design document which was probably one of the strangest document I’ve ever had to write, trying to write a brief about a Robot version of yourself and thinking about what really makes you.. You.

Because of the nature of the design (and that I didn’t know what I wanted) it was the perfect opperunity to use BeeAllDesign, created by my friend Clarke, it gives you unlimited revisions on items for a monthly fee and for someone like me who has ZERO design skills, this is perfect.

Previously I’d asked them to design the UKDisDad Logo and that turned out brilliantly (a lot of the stuff I get them to design usually has a picture of me in it.. wonder if there is something in that)

Our latest Logo, with Heather and Scarlett added.

After a 18 revisions, the team at BAD have come up with a fantastic illustration of Robot Dom and I’m really pleased to introduce him to the world

There he is, the cheeky chappy.

Over the next few weeks, we will be ‘rolling’ him out across the website and social media but we couldn’t wait to introduce him to the world.

Little Warden Logomark

The next thing for us was to grow up and have our own Logo.

For the past two years we’ve survived on a generated Icon from LogoJoy, and I think it’s served us well but to be honest, it’s never been ‘ours’.

I was speaking about my issues with the logo in the On the Side Slack, I got chatting to Rachel Shillcock and it was clear that she was the one to help with this redesign.

After a painless discovery process and a few back and forth questions, we quickly came upon the foundation of what we wanted the logomark to say.

  • We wanted to keep the shield for consistancy
  • We wanted to keep a simple design but have it unique enough that you could say ‘oh that’s Little Warden’ without having the text next to it
  • We wanted the L and W on the logo (but integrated as part of the design)

With that in mind, let me introduce you to.

And put together with an updated font (that Rachel chose because I don’t know anything about fonts)

We are really really pleased with this look and hope you’ll enjoy seeing it across the website and at events in the next few weeks.

I highly recommend both BeeAllDesign and Rachel for your design and branding needs, especially if like me, you know nothing about design.

Adding URLs Just Got Better!

At Little Warden, we like to ask what our customers love and hate about the service, it could be via email, Skype, Survey or shouting at them from across the room at conferences.

The two largest issues people have had with Little Warden recently are Adding URLs is complicated and I only want Little Warden to notify me in THESE specific circumstances.

Now, being a small development team we can only work on one large thing at once, we’ve been working on the Adding URLs is complicated to make it easier, so here it is.

Step One – Add Your URLs

Nice and simple

We’ve made this nice and simple, a large box for you to just paste everything you want to track in.

Step Two – Select your settings

Now here it gets interesting! You can carry on just using your default settings (which are displayed in the box) OR you can use some previously “Saved Settings” (ooh that’s a new feature, yes, yes it is) or you can select all the settings from scratch again.

Let’s do that

Step Three – Choose your Checks

We redesigned this page a few weeks ago to make it easier to read and configure so we won’t spend too much time on it, just know that we’ve done it so it’s easier to add more checks down the line (hint hint)

Step Four – Advanced Settings

Now this bit is a little bit complicated BUT you only have to do it once per setting!

With this page, we are starting to tackle some of the common things with LW that people react to differently (mostly redirects) so we are giving you the choice to say, how do you want Little Warden to handle them?

You can also edit the notification settings and page load settings directly from here.

Step Five – Savin’ and Namin’

Last up, we can now make the settings we’ve chosen the default and give them a name for later (i.e. important sites we care about checks)

Step Six – gogogogo

and that’s it, you are done.

Outro

For the first time ever you can now have several different saved settings which save different things such as notification emails, custom content settings and page load type.

We’ve got a few more enchanments of this sytem coming in the next week or two *cough* projects *cough* editing settings *cough* before we move onto the next big issue for our customers, Granular Notification Settings.. wow that just sounds exciting doesn’t it.

Thanks for reading and have a great day!

Dom


Little Update #3

Hello to the literally tens of people reading this (according to our stats), it’s been a bit of a light few weeks for updates this time due to so much work happening on the New URLs feature (which is VERY VERY VERY close)

Little Updates

  • New Check selection now split into tabs for easier reading and expandability later.

What’s Next?

Well other than our New URLs Section, we’ve been making progress on two new design things.

First up our Logo Mark, we love the current one BUT it’s a public domain icon that we used and it’s time for us to have something of our own.

Next up (and more exciting to some), Robot Dom is very close to having a face! So close infact, I can show you a LITTLE preview of him right now!

Robot Dom Preview

I’m really excited to show this to the world and put a face to the name

Family Updates

  • Birthday month is here and so that is on Scarlett’s mind most of the day (including how many cakes she would like)
  • We are watching the updates from China with regard to our May family holiday, it’s concerning but there is nothing we can do about it (especially as they expect both Disneylands to be closed for 2 months!
  • The videos are still going strong with the Final day of our November trip now live, Six Flags : Magic Mountain (…please subscribe)

Next Family Trip?

After Cadbury Land last weekend (video soon), we’ve got a few weeks before our next adventure which is the Harrogate Indoor Fun Fair!

LittleShoutOut

This is where we try and highlight something every week that we didn’t create in the hope it gets some attention from other people (and they aren’t a usually a client so THIS ISN’T A PAID LINK JOHN..

This week I’d like to give a shout out to Mark and the team at candour for building the excellent application

I’ve been using this a lot recently to do some writing (more information coming soon) and it’s really helped me look at the questions people are asking about subjects

That’s a wrap!

I was going to give a shout out to Mark Rofe (the very lonely billboard guy) but since he has ignored my lunch invite on FB messenger, I think the fame is starting to get to his head..

Thanks

Real Dom, Heather, Scarlett and soon to have a face Robot Dom