Humor | Quarantine Diaries (excerpt): Videoconferencing with BBC backgrounds

The joy of sets
BBC Archive | Undated

Top of the Pops, Match Of The Day, Fawlty Towers, Absolutely Fabulous, Doctor Who… I guess this is more for your personal calls: change your background to one of these empty sets from classic BBC TV shows.
Over 100 to choose from, different versions of Doctor Who’s Tardis.

Something fun to try at the end of this week, dedicated to Videoconferencing info. Enjoy.

Author = BBC

Empty sets: Science Fiction
https://www.bbc.co.uk/archive/empty_sets_science_fiction/zhj7mfr

Empty sets: Sitcoms
https://www.bbc.co.uk/archive/empty_sets_sitcoms/zj98wty

Empty sets: Entertainment
https://www.bbc.co.uk/archive/empty_sets_ent_and_sport/z626pg8

Empty sets: Children’s Television
https://www.bbc.co.uk/archive/empty_sets_childrens_tv/zjj26v4

Empty sets: EastEnders
https://www.bbc.co.uk/archive/empty_sets_Eastenders/zkbr47h

Sport sets
https://www.bbc.co.uk/archive/empty_sets_sport/zj7hscw

The joy of sets
https://www.bbc.co.uk/archive/empty_sets_collection/zfvy382

Tools | Videoconferencing: Google Meet, alternative to Zoom

As I was tweaking yesterday’s post, I found a new one posted today, covering Google Meet, another free alternative to Zoom. Building a referential on the fly.

How to use Google Meet: Free video conferencing if you don’t love Zoom
c|net | May 07, 2020

(…) Google’s Meet video conferencing service is now free for everyone to use for personal video chats.

(…) Previously available only to organizations using G Suite, Meet is now open to everyone, in a move that puts Google in competition with rival video chat service Zoom.

(…) Meet allows up to 100 participants on a call at once, and includes features such as scheduling, screen sharing and real-time captioning.

(…) Video calls will have a 60-minute cap, but Google said it won’t enforce that cap until after Sept. 30. 

How to use Google Meet, free

Author = Alison DeNisco Rayome

https://www.cnet.com/how-to/how-to-use-google-meet-free-video-conferencing-for-those-who-dont-love-zoom/

Tools | Videoconferencing: Messenger Rooms, alternative to Zoom

Facebook’s Messenger Rooms video chat app: How to use this Zoom alternative
c|net | May 05, 2020

(…) Facebook users will soon be able to create a video chat room via Facebook or the Messenger app and invite up to 50 people to join a video call — even if they don’t have a Facebook account. There will be no time limits on calls.

Messenger Rooms arrives as some people are looking for an alternative to Zoom, which has faced a number of security and privacy issues in the past two months. (If you are still using Zoom, you can take steps to lock down your meetings and prevent Zoombombing, and learn other hidden tips and tricks).

How to create a Facebook Messenger Room

Author = Alison DeNisco Rayome (c|net)

https://www.cnet.com/news/facebooks-messenger-rooms-video-chat-app-how-to-use-this-zoom-alternative/

Tools | Videoconferencing: Zoom, Tips & Tricks

A compilation of reference material to make the best use of Zoom

Zoom: Important Notice: Please begin updating all your clients to Zoom 5.0 now. After May 30, 2020, all Zoom clients on older versions will receive a forced upgrade when trying to join meetings as GCM Encryption will be fully enabled across the Zoom platform.

16 Advanced Zoom Tips for Better Video Meetings
Groove | Undated

Zoom Keyboard Shortcuts
1) Quick Invite = Cmd+I (PC: Alt+I) open invite window
2) Record Meeting = Cmd+Shift+R (PC: Alt+R) / pause/resume = Cmd+Shift+P (PC: Alt+P)
3) Share Screen = Cmd+Shift+S (PC: Alt+Shift+S) / pause/resume = Cmd+Shift+T (PC: Alt+T)
4) Mute Audio = Cmd+Shift+A (PC: Alt+A) mute/unmute
5) Turn Off Video = Cmd+Shift+V (PC: Alt+V)
6) Mute Everyone = ⌘Cmd+Ctrl+M (PC: Alt+M) note: only the meeting host can mute everyone on the call at once

Zoom Settings
7) Always Mute Microphone
8) Always Turn Video Off
9) Display Names
10) Auto-copy Invite URL When Starting a Meeting
11) Enable Shortcuts Outside of Zoom
12) Meeting Reminder (Mobile)
13) Disable Waiting Room
14) Touch Up My Appearance

Zoom Integrations
15) Slack
16) Zapier

Author = Alex Turnbull (Groove)

https://www.groovehq.com/blog/zoom-tips-and-tricks

How to use Zoom like a pro: 13 hidden features to try at your next meeting
c|net | April 28, 2020

  1. Change your background
  2. Mute your audio and turn off your camera by default
  3. Mute and unmute with the space bar
  4. React with emoji on screen
  5. Learn handy keyboard shortcuts
  6. Turn on gallery view
  7. Hide nonvideo participants
  8. Share your screen
  9. Turn on the beauty filter
  10. Record the meeting to your computer
  11. Record a meeting to the cloud
  12. Host a group meeting longer than 40 minutes
  13. Host more than 100 people

Author = Alison DeNisco Rayome (c|net)

https://www.cnet.com/how-to/how-to-use-zoom-like-a-pro-13-hidden-features-to-try-at-your-next-meeting/

Hot Keys and Keyboard Shortcuts for Zoom
Zoom | Undated

Zoom Help Center Reference / Online Manual

Author = Zoom

https://support.zoom.us/hc/en-us/articles/205683899-Hot-Keys-and-Keyboard-Shortcuts-for-Zoom

The complete Zoom guide: From basic help to advanced tricks
ZDNet | April 17, 2020

Zoom 101 = Good introduction with step by step tips and tricks to use Zoom.

Topics covered:
LET’S GET STARTED: ZOOM BASICS
THE WEB PORTAL
SCHEDULING AND HOSTING A MEETING
THE MEETING IS SET, BUT HOW DO YOU INVITE OTHERS?
ADVANCED TIPS AND TRICKS
WEBINARS
VIRTUAL BACKGROUNDS
WHITEBOARDS
WHAT ABOUT ZOOM GATECRASHERS?
ZOOM PLUGINS AND INTEGRATIONS
ZOOM ROOMS
ADDITIONAL POINTS
ZOOM’S BEST PRACTICES

Note: part of a ZDNet Special Feature: Working from Home: The Future of Business is Remote, mentioned on trulySCRUMptious in April 2020
(Direct Link included below)

Author = Charlie Osborne (ZDNet)

https://www.zdnet.com/article/zoom-101-a-starter-guide-for-beginners-plus-advanced-tips-and-tricks-for-pros/

ZDNet Special Feature: Working from Home: The Future of Business is Remote
Author= ZDNet

https://www.zdnet.com/topic/working-from-home-the-future-of-business-is-remote/

8 Tips for How to Use Zoom Like a Pro
wirecutter | Undated

Beautify (or hide) your face
Pretend you’re on the moon or cosplay as George W. Bush
Prevent embarrassment by silencing desktop notifications
There’s more to screen sharing than PowerPoint presentations
Hosts can (and should) mute attendees
Take advantage of Zoom’s powerful scheduling feature
Keep unwanted guests out of meetings
Finally (and this can’t be said enough), please mute yourself

Note: ZOOM NO LONGER A PICK | APRIL 21, 2020

After re-evaluating our videoconferencing software picks, we can no longer give Zoom our full throated recommendation.

While it has the best balance of features, usability, and value among the major videoconferencing providers, the privacy issues remain a worry until they’ve been satisfactorily addressed. That said, if you’re already using Zoom for casual chats with friends and you’re not divulging sensitive personal info or discussing issues of national security, you’re probably fine to keep using it. Just educate yourself when it comes to the best settings to use before you start a meeting and the best practices for keeping meetings secure.

Author = Ben Keough (wirecutter – A New York Times Company)

https://thewirecutter.com/blog/use-zoom-like-a-pro/

Tools | Project Management: Basecamp Personal, Free

Basecamp now has a totally free version to help you manage personal projects. You don’t even need a credit card
The Verge | November 14, 2019

(…) Basecamp launched a new, free tier of its project management software, which it calls Basecamp Personal. Basecamp was originally designed for small businesses, offering handy features like chat, an internal message board, group to-dos, a shared schedule, and more, all in one place. Typically, though, it costs $99 per month, which could be prohibitively expensive if you’re just looking for something to help manage tasks in your personal life or with a smaller group of people.

Basecamp says Basecamp Personal is designed “specifically for freelancers, students, families, and personal projects,” and with it, you can make spaces for up to three projects, work on these projects with up to 20 users, and store up to one gigabyte of data in those projects. The new tier seems to put Basecamp in direct competition with free tiers from other project management tools like Asana and Trello, as well as workplace chat software like Slack and Microsoft Teams.

Author = Jay Peters

https://www.theverge.com/2019/11/14/20965543/basecamp-free-version-manage-basic-personal-projects

Basecamp Personal

Get it together, for free.
Introducing Basecamp Personal: our 100% free Basecamp plan that’s tailor-made for freelancers, students, families, and personal projects. Sometimes good things really do come in small packages.
Sign up for Basecamp Personal

https://basecamp.com/personal

Tools | Spreadsheet.com: Game changer?

Move over, Excel and Google Sheets. Meet the spreadsheet of the future
Fast Company | November 22, 2019

(…) The best way to describe Spreadsheet.com is as a mashup between a traditional spreadsheet, à la Sheets or Excel, and a more advanced database or project-management service like Trello or Basecamp. You bring in any sort of data you want, including financial records, product launch plans, employee databases, and even full-fledged CRM worksheets. Then, similar to what’s offered by services such as Smartsheet and Airtable—with some new twists we’ll explore more thoroughly in a moment—you gain the ability to manage it in a contemporary and collaboration-friendly environment with lots of added bells and whistles.

Article goes into a few of the features of the product, which is not yet available, so I could not test it. You can sign up to request an early access (see below).

Author = JR Raphael (Fast Company)

https://www.fastcompany.com/90432824/move-over-microsoft-and-google-meet-the-spreadsheet-of-the-future

Website is a Work In Progress as I post this. There is an option to “Request Early Access”:

Click here to Request Early Access

Website: Spreadsheets that come alive as applications
Work better together, wherever you are.

https://www.spreadsheet.com/

JIRA vs Trello vs Asana vs TeamClerk vs … WordPress?

This comparison is different, coming from the point of view of a WordPress specialist.

JIRA vs Trello vs Asana vs TeamClerk vs WordPress: Conclusion

JIRA: Use it when working with a team on larger software projects, and if you’re utilizing things like scrum for managing your work.

Trello: Use it if you’re looking for a tool that you and your team can use for free, and that gives you ultimate freedom to manage your projects however you wish.

Asana: Use it if you expect your project management tool to introduce some structure into your workflow, and if you prefer list-based tools, rather than card-based.

TeamClerk: Use it to track your progress in real-time, and to get a good overview of a handful of projects running in parallel from the same dashboard.

Managing projects with WordPress + plugins: Not really.

Author = Karol K (codeinwp)

https://www.codeinwp.com/blog/jira-vs-trello-vs-asana-vs-teamclerk/

Introducing the Zombie Scrum Symptom Checker

Is your team suffering from Zombie Scrum? And if so, what can you do to improve? Do you wonder how other teams work with Scrum? How many members they have? What the usual length of a Sprint is? Is Scrum really helping teams deliver value to stakeholders faster and making them happier as a result? Find out with the first version of the Free Zombie Scrum Symptoms Checker.

The mission of our app “Our mission with this app is to use an empirical approach to better understand how teams and organizations work with Scrum, what it makes possible for them, what enables or impedes their success and how to better support them.“

Other content:
Based on a scientific approach
Receive your team’s profile
Open-source data and replication
Next steps for our research
Give it a try!

Author = Christiaan Verwijs (Scrum.org)

https://www.scrum.org/resources/blog/introducing-zombie-scrum-symptom-checker

Fight Zombie Scrum!
Link to the Free Online Tool to Diagnose your team

Author = The Liberators

https://survey.zombiescrum.org

8 tips for better agile retrospective meetings

Here’s how to get more positive results from your retro meetings, and build a stronger team while you’re at it.

What’s a retro supposed to look like?
When retros implode

8 tips for better retrospectives

  1. Amplify the good! Instead of focusing on what didn’t work well, why not begin the retro by having everyone mention one positive item first?
  2. Don’t jump to a solution. Thinking about a problem deeply instead of trying to solve it right away might be a better option.
  3. If the retrospective doesn’t make you feel excited about an experiment, maybe you shouldn’t try it in the next iteration.
  4. If you’re not analyzing how to improve, (5 Whys, force-field analysis, impact mapping, or fish-boning), you might be jumping to solutions too quickly.
  5. Vary your methods. If every time you do a retrospective you ask, “What worked, what didn’t work?” and then vote on the top item from either column, your team will quickly get bored. Retromat is a great free retrospective tool to help vary your methods.
  6. End each retrospective by asking for feedback on the retro itself. This might seem a bit meta, but it works: Continually improving the retrospective is recursively improving as a team.
  7. Remove the impediments. Ask how you are enabling the team’s search for improvement, and be prepared to act on any feedback.
  8. There are no “iteration police.” Take breaks as needed. Deriving hypotheses from analysis and coming up with experiments involves creativity, and it can be taxing. Every once in a while, go out as a team and enjoy a nice retrospective lunch.

Author = Catherine Louis

https://opensource.com/article/18/3/tips-better-agile-retrospective-meetings

Retromat

Retromat is a great free retrospective tool to help vary your methods.

https://retromat.org/en/