Wednesday, October 31, 2018

More Flexibility for Stewardship Obligations

Thanks to some good feedback from my friends at Sierra Foothill Conservancy, I'm pleased to announce a new suite of features in Stewardship activities that add a ton of flexibility to Monitoring Visits.

Have you ever wanted to record something as a monitoring visit, but not "count" it as your annual monitoring visit? Until now, there was no way to distinguish one monitoring visit from another. And, if you were querying out Stewardship activities by Last Monitored Date, then these extra monitoring visits could throw off your results.

Do you ever have multiple types of "monitoring" visits that you have to do on a single property? This comes up a lot for land trusts that work on mitigation projects.

Monitoring Visit Types

Now, Monitoring Visits have a Type field. By default, all of your prior visits have been given the type "Annual Monitoring," but you can put in whatever Types make sense for your work.

Multiple Default Monitoring Objective Lists

There are now multiple Default Monitoring Objectives lists that are tied to particular Types of Monitoring Visits. By default, any Monitoring Objectives you had defined were moved into a list for "Annual Monitoring" visits. But, if you want a different set of Objectives for each Type, you can.

New Stewardship Obligations

Since a single Stewardship activity may have multiple obligations associated with it - not just a single annual monitoring visit - there is a new section called "Stewardship Obligations" on the Details page. By default, all Stewardship activities received a single obligation called "Annual Monitoring" which utilized any monitoring window and monitoring interval data you had set.

Stewardship Obligations will be "satisfied" by certain Types of Monitoring Visits. This is how you'll keep track of what properties require monitoring. When you complete a visit that satisfies any of your Obligations, the Completed On date will automatically be filled in for you.

After an Obligation date has expired, it will be reset to the next interval and the Completed On date will be reset. If you did not satisfy an obligation before the Complete By date, that date will be recorded in the Missed Obligations list in the details of the Obligation.

Transition Your Last Monitored Date Queries and Reports

You should begin to transition any queries or reports that utilize the Last Monitored Date to using these new Obligations. The Last Monitored Date field may be removed in the future. Here's what a query might look like for all the Stewardship activities that require monitoring yet this year:

Removal of Monitoring Interval and Monitoring Window

The fields on the Details page for Monitoring Interval and Monitoring Window have been removed. The data still exists in your Stewardship activities so any queries or reports that you currently have that utilize these fields still work. However, you should transition them as soon as possible to using the new Stewardship Obligations format.

Updates Coming to Stewardship Dashboard Widget

These changes mean the Stewardship Dashboard widget will also need some updating so it can display your new obligations in meaningful ways. Stay tuned for that!

Friday, October 26, 2018

Mapping View Results

I'm happy to report that you can now visualize the results of certain Views as a map. Just select Map from the View As dropdown list in the view editor:

Now, press the refresh button or close the editor and the results will be placed on a map instead of a table:

Clicking on a pin or polygon will display the details in a panel on the right. The fields you chose for your view will be the ones displayed in the table. The name of the result is a link that will take you to its main details page.

The map is currently available for Property Acquisitions, Stewardships, Dispositions, Tracts, Monitoring Visits, Monitoring Issues, and Management Actions.

If you display a map of Monitoring Visits, Monitoring Issues, or Management Actions, you will also see their specific geography in addition to the Tract boundaries. Because some of your results may share the same Tracts, if you click on the Tract in the map, the details pane may show multiple results:

Tuesday, October 2, 2018

LANDSCAPE Mobile 2.0!

I'm excited to announce the next version of LANDSCAPE Mobile is ready!

The big new features are the ability to add and edit Management Actions in your Stewardship activities and add and edit Site Assessments in your Property Acquisitions. But, there are number of smaller enhancements as well including:

  • The main lists support auto-loading of new results as you scroll to the bottom
  • The main lists have a search feature
  • Monitoring Visit statuses can now be edited and they don't automatically disappear from the list if you change to a "Completed" status
  • Issue list has a filter to show "All" or just "Unresolved"
  • You can know take photos directly into existing geography on the maps rather than relying on your proximity to nearby points
  • Numerous bug fixes...

I've whipped up a new training video for the app. It's a little over 20 minutes and the audio has a ridiculous buzz in it, but I hope you'll still watch it.

I hope you enjoy the new features and as always, please keep the feedback coming!

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Merging Map Points

There are a few different ways to get new data into your LANDSCAPE maps. One of the easiest ways to create new points on a map is to simply import a set of geotagged photos. Doing so will create new points for each photo, but it will try its best to combine multiple photos into a single point if they are "close enough." However, GPS accuracy can be variable in the field when you are taking your photos, so even though you may never have moved from a certain spot as you took photos, the actual GPS location stamped into the photo may have moved around your general location. This can happen when you are taking photos in LANDSCAPE Mobile as well.

If photos that should have been grouped together aren't, they become a little cumbersome to work with in LANDSCAPE, but don't despair! There is now a way to merge points together.

With the pan tool selected, simply click on a point you want to combine with another and then drag it over to the other point. You'll notice the destination point will turn yellow:

Now, drop it and you'll be prompted to merge the two together.

That's it!

The destination point will obtain all the photos from the source point and the source point will be removed from the map.

Wednesday, July 18, 2018

Little Green Light Contact Report Syncing

Good news for you Little Green Light users: Contact Reports will now sync with LANDSCAPE! If you create a new Contact Report in LGL it will be synced with LANDSCAPE at the same time as other Constituent updates (once a day, unless you manually activate it). If you create a Communication in LANDSCAPE for a Contact that is synced with LGL, it will be pushed to LGL as a Contact Report immediately.

I'm a big believer in using the best tool for any particular job and figuring out how to make all your tools work together. Tighter integration with LGL allows your fundraising and land protection staff to use the best tools for their respective jobs while maintaining the visibility each needs into the activities of the other.

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Easy Public Web Maps

Many conservation organizations have or would like an interactive map of their properties on their website. Usually creating and maintaining such a map requires a lot of time and technical expertise. Since all of the data that you'd likely want on such a map is already in LANDSCAPE, wouldn't it be great if LANDSCAPE could generate that map and keep it updated for you? It can!

There is now a Public Map section under Settings. From there you can create an HTML widget that you add to your website that will display a map right from the data in LANDSCAPE. You can choose which properties get displayed and can control their styling and popup window content.

The beauty is that there is no longer anything you need to do to add newly protected properties to your map - just complete them in LANDSCAPE and it happens automatically.

Here's a Knowledge Base article that explains the settings.

I hope some of you find it useful.

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

Sometimes a Task is just a Task

The good folks at North Florida Land Trust reminded me this week that the simplest answer is often the right one. At least it was when it came to task lists.

The Project system in LANDSCAPE is powerful and is really good at tracking complex sets of tasks across multiple activities, but sometimes it can be a lot more than you want or need. Sometimes you just want to create a new task but have it related to the activity you are working on - whether that's a Property Acquisition, Stewardship, or even a particular Management Action.

The My Tasks window has let you create new tasks for a long time now, but it would only let you relate those tasks to an existing Project or leave them completely unrelated to anything. Further, if the task wasn't assigned to you, it wasn't possible to see it in My Tasks, so you'd have to do a special query to find it again.

To make one-off tasks more useful I'm happy to announce a few new enhancements to the My Tasks window, which is now just labelled "Tasks."

First, the tasks created in the Tasks window can now be related to nothing, the current activity, or an active project.

Second, there are new filters in the Tasks window. They let you see only tasks assigned to you, only tasks related to the current activity, and all tasks that are incomplete. Various combinations of these filters will then allow you to see everyone's tasks related to a particular activity whether or not the tasks come from a Project or are just one-off tasks created in the Tasks window.

For more details on using the Tasks window, check out this article in the Knowledge Base.

Monday, March 26, 2018

Stewardship Reporting Obligations

If you find yourself needing to regularly report to 3rd-parties about the stewardship-related activities you perform on your properties, you can now use the new Reporting Obligations feature in LANDSCAPE. You'll find it on the Details page of a Stewardship Activity.

The following Knowledge Base article explains it: Reporting Obligations