Trello Power-Up: List Limits

April 20, 2019

In November of 2018, I found myself back in the Sydney Atlassian office on short notice for a 4-month secondment. I happened to land on the week of the company's global hackathon, ShipIt. It had been over 18 months since I had participated in the ShipIt in Sydney (where they are the most competitive), so I figured I'd represent Trello and participate.

I had remembered that Jira had recently released a new Kanban board style view which had a WIP limits feature I really liked. I decided to "borrow" this feature and put it into Trello as Power-Up.

So over the course of 24 hours, I hacked up the feature into Trello. I added a softLimit property to the List model and created the appropriate PUT and GET API endpoints. Shortly after that, I wrote some frontend code in the web app to allow users to set a list limit and make the lists go yellow when the number of cards in said list exceeds the set limit.

I also did a Backlog feature - but that's a story for another time.

It wouldn't have been a hackathon if I didn't awkwardly present with a live demo in front of a few thousand people in Sydney office.

Fast forward 5 months and I'm back in the New York City office, trying to convince people to ship it to customers. The Product Managers and Executives kept trying to save the feature for some kind of Business Class upsell but no one wanted to own the feature since I was on the Ecosystem team at the time. Eventually, I got sick of waiting and didn't want the idea to disappear in some backlog so I pushed for it to be a free Power-Up for all users. I productionized the hackathon code, got it reviewed, merged it and then shipped it.

I hope Trello users out there are enjoying the Power-Up and find it useful. I hope to ship more features like this in the future. 🙂