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Tally Meeting Votes Quickly with GoZuus

Taking attendance in a meeting? GoZuus now helps you quickly tally votes. Simply call roll using GoZuus at the beginning of your meeting, then click the “Show Voting Totals” link at the bottom. You’ll be presented with a screen like this:

When it comes time for a vote, you’ll know immediately how many “yea”s it needs to pass! In this particular example, 73 Brothers are present. To pass a vote, you’ll need 37 affirmative votes. If Associate Members are also allowed to vote on this issue, you’ll need 41 of the 81 total members present to pass the vote. Need a two-thirds majority or other ratio? Change the minimum percentage required to pass and the display will update immediately.

We hope this makes the secretary’s job easier during meetings, so everyone can finish sooner. Let us know what you think!

New Feature: Custom Profile Fields

custom-profile-editTwo weeks ago, we replaced the profile editor with one which we hoped would be easier for your members to understand. At the time, we mentioned that part of our motivation was to provide a few additional improvements. Today we’re excited to present the first of those updates.

Several groups asked for the capability to collect information specific to their group on users’ profiles. Some wanted to record big sisters, initiation scroll numbers, or just general hobbies and interests. Alumni asked if we could include information about their spouses and/or children on the site. Since this data varies from group to group, we wanted to allow organizations to pick what sorts of additional questions would be added.

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Updated: New Profile Editor

profile-screenshotWe just updated the profile editor this past week. There were a growing number of problems with the old one, and we wanted to lay the groundwork for a few additional features we’re planning.

I started off by making a list of what we didn’t like:

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Quick Win: Anonymous Questionnaires

We’ve had a few requests for anonymous respondables. Such a feature never occurred to me, probably because our chapter always wanted to conduct official votes during meetings (which is essentially the main reason you’d want anonymous submissions). However, now that we have a few groups approaching the 150 member mark, I can see how counting votes in a meeting could be time-consuming.

Anonymous Respondable Options

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Our Git Deployment Workflow

Like most Rails developers, we’re using git for source control. However, our first attempt at setting up a deployment system made a huge mess so we went looking for a better way.

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Feature Update: Statistics

The point tracking system was a great idea, but we felt it wasn’t living up to its potential. Today, we’ve replaced the Point module with a Statistics interface that is easier to use and much more flexible. Take a peek below (click to enlarge):
Statistics Home Screen

The first thing you’ll notice is that we’re now including Attendance, Balance, and Work Hour tracking by default. Limitations in the Points system prevented it from being used for such a wide array of purposes, but now you can access everything from one standardized interface. We made several changes to make this possible.

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iCal Exports for Multi-day Events

One critical feature for GoZuus is to ensure that data is available not just within the site, but also portable in usable formats.  One obvious use of this is the group calendar.  We’ve built a nice online calendar, but we’re not out to replace Google Calendar or iCal or your iPhone.  Cleanly exporting data in iCalendar format lets us feed data into whatever scheduling application our users choose to embrace, so that their GoZuus calendar works where they want it.

There’s plenty of resources online discussing how easy it is to use the Ruby Icalendar library.  However, just following those directions didn’t produce quite the results I was looking for when exporting multi-day events.  Using the directions from the previous links, Apple’s iCal app displayed every event as ending one day early.  And Google Calendar put “(12:00am?)” in front of the titles.  Not exactly seamless integration.  A quick Google search didn’t turn up anything useful, so hopefully this solution will save someone else some time.

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