Man, we had fun with this one. Our Cash for Clunkers program ran for only three short weeks, but we accepted 427 clunker trade-ins, and there were some doozies. So many in fact that we’ve decided to add a few extra awards, in addition to the $4,000 grand prize for the best trade-in. We’re giving a special edition JIRA 4 t-shirt to the three additional award winners.

So, without further adieu, we bring you the Cash for Clunkers Awards Ceremony. Cue drum roll…

The Don’t Try This @Home Award

409.jpgThis award recognizes superhuman resolve. This category saw some great submissions, from filing cabinets to Excel spreadsheets that took an hour to open. But the winner was an advertisement for the human condition.

Clunker: Pen and Paper

Description: It is useless, other than as a to-do list — not tracking anything, not shareable, meaningless scribbles out of context. Plus, I can’t put it in my pocket because of the spirals. Frankly, I’d be happy with an upgrade to a Moleskine.

The Most Creative Bug Tracker

Also a category with great submissions, but the judges here are all married (with husbands and wives), and this entry resonated with a few of us.

Clunker: the Wife

Description: She nags, nags, nags until I get things done. There’s no prioritisation, no MIS to show her how much has been achieved just that constant whining about when I’ll get the next job done.

The Best Rant

There were some pretty darn good rants, from some clearly frustrated trade-ins. But this one made us really feel for the submitter.

Clunker: Easyprojects.net

Description: The very definition of clunker oozes thoughts of slow and clumsy with a little bad design mixed in… which happen to be the 3 keystones of EasyProjects. I’ll miss brewing coffee while waiting for pages to render, idiotic use of ajax and the all-too-often server errors. Maybe it will be the clicking on white-space to get pop-up menus that I’ll miss.. after all, it took me a year to remember these tricky user interface tidbits. Well.. after making coffee and extolling the virtues of the beach ball of death, the ridiculously fast and refined Jira simply makes me mad… mad that I wasted two years trying to get back the investment I made, the compromises, the defending of its usage to my co-workers. Alas, Jira, thanks for showing me how good it can be.

And the Grand Prize Winner for Best Trade-in

Okay, so we did specify there was a 50-word limit, but even if we take only the first 50 words of this submission, or really any 50-word section, it still takes the cake. Plus, the kind folks at Softrek have offered to donate the $4,000 prize money to the Roswell Park Cancer Institute, which we think is pretty cool. Enjoy the submission.

Clunker: HP Quality Center

Description: Many, many things frustrate us about our current clunker. Just as important as switching to JIRA though, if we win the $4,000 we will donate every penny to a local cancer research institute called Roswell Park. To describe why we’re switching, we wrote a poem called ‘Twas the night Before Beta’ which is a parody of ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas’. The names in the sixth stanza are the names of the software engineers on our team. We hope you have as much fun reading it as we did writing it:

‘Twas the night before beta, when all through the app
Not a bug had been fixed ’cause Quality Center is crap;
Our product was written and developed with care,
In hopes it would just work, that bugs would be rare.
The engineers toiled away while wishing for their beds,
While visions of missed deadlines danced in their heads;
With our boss lurking the halls, and us under the gun,
Our brains could not settle, our work was not done.
When into my Inbox there arrived such a letter,
I sprang over to Outlook to see if the news was any better;
Opening the message I clicked in a flash,
It was a note from Atlassian, we could send QC to the trash!
I opened the new email, stunned by the sight,
Ran to my co-worker, and shared my delight;
When, what to our wondering eyes should appear,
It was news of JIRA 4 Beta, and Final was near!
With brand new features, so lively and quick,
I knew in a moment this product was slick;
More rapid than eagles, JIRA’s benefits arrive,
It reports, it tracks… HP QC will never survive.
“Now Andre! Now, Tracy! Now, Faisal! Now Glenn!
On, Mark! On, John! Let the fixing begin!
JIRA can prioritize those issues that call!
Now code away! Code away! Code away all!”
As defects that before in wild Mercury got lost,
They become clear in JIRA for one-tenth of the cost.
So up to the top of the list JIRA flew,
Chock full of new features, and a few Aussies too.
And then, in one click, the download began,
Byte by byte, the solution was nearly at hand.
As I drew in my head, and was smiling with glee,
Down to the filesystem JIRA was delivered to me.
From the top to the bottom, it was designed to be agile,
It is nothing like QC, which is bloated and fragile;
A bundle of toys like dashboards and searching,
Custom workflows, and plugins, and real-time reporting.
My eyes – how they twinkled! I grinned from ear to ear!
JIRA will save the project! JIRA has no fear!
This droll little issue tracker delivered with a bow,
Hurry, back to work now before morning’s glow!
The hour was late as we installed JIRA 4,
Weary eyed but encouraged onward we bore;
Rapidly now our path forward became clear,
We organized our issues and then let out a cheer.
JIRA was flexible and robust, what trackers should be,
We hung our heads in shame, for even considering QC!
But we came to our senses, and found what is right,
To help us produce, and stay organized in our plight.
We spoke not a word, we went straight to work,
JIRA reported out issues without a single quirk.
Productivity doubled, Management is happy indeed,
For finally we have a tool, that does what we need!
We sprang from our cubes, to Atlassian gratitude poured,
Thanks to JIRA 4, Beta got out the door.
We heard our boss exclaim, as he drove out of sight,
“Our application is finished, and JIRA saved the night!”
So now we wait for cash, and decide how to spend,
Surely the money can help a hurting soul mend.
Cancer is a beast that sends families spinning,
Roswell Park Cancer Institute will get all of our winnings!!

We had a great time with this, and we hope you did too. Congrats to all the submissions. Hope you enjoy JIRA 4!

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