Atlassian Confluence 5.5 Adds Dedicated Task View

Enterprise software toolmaker Atlassian this week released Confluence 5.5, the latest version of its content and team collaboration platform. With this release, the company introduces a new way to keep managers and their teams "accountable and on track" by making it possible to track tasks within Confluence.

"Ad hoc tasks are often created within the context of where you work," said Wendell Keuneman, Atlassian's collaboration group product manager. "During meetings, for example, you create meeting minutes, make decisions, plan activities. The ability to keep tasks together with the actual work and with the people doing that work is a key to productivity."

Confluence isn't aimed at people engaged in "hard-core task management," Keuneman added, but at enhancing productivity around contextual tasks that are typically ad hoc, generated in a meeting, and are often difficult to track. It provides users with the ability to add items while they're working within the context of their work within Confluence, and then have access to a coordinated view so they can efficiently follow up on those tasks.

Confluence 5.5 also allows users to assign a task on any page and includes a new date picker that provides a new visual remind of the due date. In fact, the providing visual cues is a big part of this release. The My Task view gives managers and team member a single view of all upcoming task, with due dates, and where the work on those tasks is taking place.

This release also comes with a Task Report Blueprint. Blueprints, which the company introduced last year, are page-creation templates designed to simplify the way users of Confluence create and share their work. Blueprints also provide instructional "placeholder" text and an automated structure for organizing content once it has been created.

"Transparency is the key to success for every project and people manager," said Terrence Caldwell, marketing specialist in Atlassian's Confluence product group in a blog post. "You want to be able to see and report the progress of your team and projects, and make sure you are moving forward. The Task Report Blueprint makes it easy to create a quick wrap-up of all the tasks assigned to specific users or projects. You can see exactly what's on your team's plate or what needs to get done for your project to reach the finish line."

The Australian collaboration and development toolmaker is probably best known for Confluence and its JIRA bug tracker. Atlassian's product catalog also includes Stash, an on-premise distributed version control systems (DVCSs) for enterprise teams; Bitbucket, a cloud-based DVCS hosting service; SourceTree, a desktop client for the Git and Mercurial DVCSs; and Bamboo, a continuous integration (CI) server.

About the Author

John K. Waters is the editor in chief of a number of sites, with a focus on high-end development, AI and future tech. He's been writing about cutting-edge technologies and culture of Silicon Valley for more than two decades, and he's written more than a dozen books. He also co-scripted the documentary film Silicon Valley: A 100 Year Renaissance, which aired on PBS.  He can be reached at [email protected].