Trello is one of the best productivity tools to hit the scene in the past decade, mainly due to the power of visual organization. It’s more than just a to-do list alternative. It’s an entirely different paradigm, especially for programmers. computer science computer science computer science computer science
Admittedly, Trello is best for solo endeavors or small-team projects (up to, say, five people). Beyond that and it can get a bit chaotic, at which point you’d probably fare better with something like Basecamp, Asana, or Wrike.
Here are some essential tips that’ll help you get the most out of Trello. They’re all native to Trello itself so no browser extensions required. Feel free to pick and choose the tips that work best for you. computer science computer science
1. One Board per Project
Trello is comprised of three main elements — boards, lists, and cards — but for some reason first-time users tend to avoid using boards altogether, effectively diminishing Trello’s organizational capabilities by one-third.
When you first start using Trello, you may be tempted to have a single “programming” board with one list per project. This could work for tiny projects, such as for homework assignments in a programming course, but it’s too limiting otherwise. computer science computer science computer science computer science
Commit to using one board per project, whether that means one board per website, one board per mobile game, or one board per in-house utility tool. For massive projects, you may even want to use one board per project module!
2. Use Lists for Milestones (and More)
Trello doesn’t offer a default set of lists when you create a new board so you can do whatever you want, but a lot of people suggest starting with the “Done, Doing, To-Do” method of organization (meaning one list for each of those).
This can be a useful method, but it’s often too simplistic for programming projects. As such, you should forget that it even exists. computer science computer science computer science computer science computer science
Instead, I’ve found it most effective to create one list for every project milestone. Think of each milestone as a new release, whether major or minor. This keeps tasks organized in a way that makes practical sense.
For example, you might have a list called “Release 1.3” consisting of all the new features you expect in that upcoming milestone, but you might also have a list called “Release 1.2.7” consisting of the next bug fix patch.
You can also have separate lists for organizing tasks that don’t yet belong to a milestone. An “Ideas” list is great for brainstorming. A “Back Burner” list is good for rejected ideas you may want to revisit. You should also have a “References” list for important sites and file attachments. computer science computer science