I don't know whether this should be on programmers - I've been looking at the above three apps over the past few weeks just for myself and I'm in two minds. All three look good, are easy to use, and I came to this conclusion;

  • Asana is the easiest to use
  • ActiveCollab is the feature rich and easiest flow
  • BaseCamp is the best UX / design

But I didn't really find my workflow was any more quicker / efficient, in fact it was a bit slower and organized.

Is there a realistic place for them in workflow - should programmers use them for themselves, or only when a project manager can take control of it?


yes you should use some kind of project managment tool, even as a sole developer. but your primary goals are different, as a team your goal is to keep everyone up-to-date. as a sole developer you are by definition always up-to-date, your goal is to free your mind. freeing it form stuff that needs to be done, but not now.

you can reach this goal by simple writing task's down, in basecamp, excel, an a sheet of paper, .. it doesn't matter just free your brain.

for my projects i am using Trello which is a fantastic tool for my use-case, primary because it doesn't impose a specific workflow on me but it gives me the power to create my very own which fit's my needs.

here is a great blog posts from uservoice which show's how trello can be used in software development.

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  • Trello looks awesome. Like you say, the fact its not a specific workspace drastically increases flexibility and therefore usablity! – rickyduck Jul 30 '12 at 9:41
  • As a sole developer, your goal is to keep yourself up-to-date too. When you get back to a project you modified the last time six months ago, you're not up-to-date at all and can't usually remember if a specific feature was already implemented or not. – Arseni Mourzenko Aug 14 '12 at 7:30

We use Basecamp. But for developers it's too flexible, everyone has almost the same rights. For example a developer can delete a task without anyone noticing it. The same if you use Basecamp with your customers, they can delete a task without anyone knowing.

But the good thing is the UX and it's so easy and fast to use. And they have an API

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I think Wrike would also be a good alternative.

It is really flexible and easy to customize for your own work flow. For instance, I think it might be handy for bug tracking. You can create separate tags for each bug priority level, as well as categorize them by status, for example opened, in progress, need to test, resolved etc. It is really helpful to have all the files, like screenshots, stored in one place together with the task, so that every team member can have access to the most up-to-date info.

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