Introducing MoTo from Chingu Voyage 13

Ming Yong
Ming Yong
Dec 27, 2019 · 5 min read

This post is about 4 online strangers who came together to develop 1 project in 6 weeks.

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Photo by Adam Solomon on Unsplash

Hi all, we are toucans-team-03 from Chingu voyage 13 and we would like to share our very first Chingu voyage experience as a team with the hope of helping you to create a better Chingu experience!

Chingu? Toucans? Who are we?

If you are familiar with Chingu, feel free to skip to the next part.

Chingu is a remote 8-week program for web developers. Participants will determine their tier (level) in the first two weeks by submitting a “pre-work solo project” and then be formed into a team to develop a project of their choice in the next six weeks.

Toucans, one of the 3 tiers (Toucans, Gecko or Bear), are teams with basic HTML/CSS and JavaScript skills and usually builds projects like Landing Pages.

In sum, we are four developers formed into a (toucans level)remote agile team through Chingu. Our goal is to develop an MVP (Minimum Viable Product) of our choice in 6 sprints, each a week long.

What is MoTo?

MoTo is our project. Our GitHub description sums everything up: “MoTo, a toucans flavour Momentum clone”.

Simply enough, MoTo = Momentum + Toucans.

How MoTo looks like

It has the basic features of Momentum, such as:

  • Random inspiration quote and beautiful background image to keep the interface nice and fresh!
  • Friendly greeting after entering your name once!
  • ToDo list for jotting down miscellaneous tasks to avoid distraction!
  • Local weather forecast for the current week!

In addition to that, MoTo also comes with two new bonus productivity features:

  • Focus on 3 M.I.T(Most Important Task) instead of 1 main focus!
  • Pomodoro clock to balance your tasks and breaks!

What we use and How we work

Tech stack we ended up using

  • HTML
  • CSS with BEM methodology
  • JavaScript
  • jQuery
  • GitHub Pages and Netlify for deployment
  • local storage for data storing

Tools we used along the way

  • Discord: general communication.
  • When2Meet: setting up our first meeting.
  • Google Hangout: weekly meeting.
  • ZenHub: managing progress.
  • Google shared folder: every non-code documentation.

Workflow we developed throughout the voyage

The four of us all took part in designing and implementing the features. Ola took on the role of team lead, who reviewed the team’s code. Rafael took on the role of a tech lead, who was in charge of managing ZenHub and merging PRs.

We have a fixed agenda for our fixed weekly 1-hour meeting:

  • 5 minutes stand up: Everybody shares about “What they did in the last sprint”, “Their tasks for the current sprint” and “Roadblocks they encountered”.
  • Open Questions and Suggestions: We take time answering questions/worries that each member has and share our opinion on how to improve our efficiency as a team.
  • Tasks assignment: We make sure everybody got something to work on in the current sprint.

Individual meeting notes are written before the meeting in case of bad quality audio and then consolidated into a voyage log blog post by the host of the meeting, which we take turns doing. So to speak, we have our entire journey documented! (Links at the bottom)

Something we learned as a team

1.Speak with your code/draft

Instead of describing your ideas (be it code implementation or project wireframe) with your words, code it out or draw out a draft first and then get feedback from your teammates. This way is much quicker as it’s hard to put the same picture in your head into your teammates’ heads.

2. Decide and write down a team workflow

Although we still encountered tons of Git issue, having the steps of how to submit a PR written down, or even creating a GitHub PR template for the team to follow helps us to avoid more potential issues.

3.Timely and efficient communication

We messed up the code quite a lot. Speak out any concerns or things you messed up as soon as possible so you can fix it as a team. Plus, your teammates can avoid the same mistake!

4. Be a good teammate

Besides using some exclamation marks to keep your tone lively!! It’s okay if you have to leave the voyage early or skip a meeting when things happen in life as long as you inform your teammates beforehand. And not to mention the most important one, be committed! Having teammates who are dedicated is the main reason MoTo is here!

The future of MoTo

Our web development journey doesn’t stop here, neither does MoTo! We plan to improve the current MVP version, here’re two steps we are taking:

Open the experience to everyone!

We decided to make MoTo open source in efforts to incorporate new features and ideas from the open-source community. We welcome everybody (beginners as well since we are!) who are interested in contributing ideas, code, or want to try out open source contributions.

Make it into a Chrome Extension!

We figured why not take one step further and learn how to make MoTo a real Chrome extension, so we did it.

Thanks for reading!

Finally, here are all the links you need.

Check out projects from other teams

Chingu Voyage 13 project showcase blog post

Drop us any criticism/feedback/questions

Our voyage logs

This blog post is written by Rafael, Ola, Sophia and Ming!

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