Power to the plans (and people)!
Dear LiteFarm Community,
It is with much excitement that we present to you some of the most requested features on our backlog - the ability to repeat and delete crop plans! In addition to these often requested features, we’ve included about a hundred smaller features and bug fixes as well.
However, none of this would be possible without the support of the farmers, researchers, designers, developers, financial supporters, and of course the incredible community of contributors that make up the LiteFarm Community. So first up, we want to say a big THANK YOU to all of those incredible people! Special thanks to Javier Antonio Hernandez De Paz, Alan Treviño, Yu Tian, Shang Heng Mak, Gursimran Singh, Orangel “Kike” Marquez, Calum Murray, and Antonella Sgarlatta from our contributor community for exhibiting openness, collaboration, hard work and otherwise living the spirit of open source software with their actions. So once again, thank you for all the support and dedication. LiteFarm is a better product, both in the functionality we build and the process of building it, because of this community.
Without further ado, here's what's new:
Repeat your crop plans
With this update, you’re now able to quickly and easily repeat your crop plans. There are two ways you can do this:
For new crop plans you’re creating, you’ll now see a checkbox labelled “This crop plan repeats” on the last screen in the crop plan creation flow. Checking this box and then clicking save will save the plan and open a flow so you can indicate a start date for the repeating crop plan, how frequently it will repeat and when it will finish.
For existing crop plans, you’ll be able to set them to repeat on a schedule by selecting the crop plan you’d like to repeat and clicking the three dots to the right of the plans’ name.
In both cases, after setting your plan to repeat you’ll be shown a confirmation screen outlining the details of your repeated plan, including the number of crop plans and tasks that will be created. Confirming will create that many new crop plans!
Once you’ve got your newly repeated crop plans, they’ll function like any other crop plan. You can add or remove tasks, change task assignees, modify crop plan names or estimated harvests without modifying any of the other crop plans in the collection.
However, since it might be useful to be able to view all of your repeated crop plans together - we’ve added a convenient interface to be able to view and move from plan to plan quickly and easily.
We understand that there are many reasons you might want to repeat a crop plan, so we’ve tried to make things as flexible as possible (while also keeping them simple). When setting your schedule, you’ve got the ability to determine when a crop plan begins repeating. We think there’s subtle power in this.
For example, you might want to create a succession planting to ensure you’ve got the same crop approaching maturity throughout a growing period. In this situation, you would probably want to create a crop plan and set it to repeat every few days or weeks for a set number of repetitions during the growing period. In this situation, you would set the repetitions to “begin” with the initially created crop plan.
Now imagine you’re at the end of a season and a succession planting has worked really well. You might want to repeat the last plan in that sequence, with a start date in the next growing period. This way you save time having to create the crop plan in the following growing period. By repeating the crop plan in the next growing season, you also copy over all of the tasks that made it work so well the first time around.
You might also want to use repeating crop plans to schedule longer term repetitions as well. Say you’ve got certain crops you grow every year - your staples. You can easily set a crop plan to repeat annually, so you have a template for what that growing season will look like 2, 3, or 5 years in the future. Remember, you can add, remove, or modify tasks within each of those repeated crop plans to reflect the real-time challenges and changes that always occur during a growing season.
Also feel free to combine some of these repeat strategies. For example, you could repeat a crop plan annually for a certain number of years. Then, at the beginning of your growing season you can modify that annually repeated plan to match the conditions for the current season, and then repeat it over that season in order easily create a succession planting. Voila! So much power at your fingertips!
And don’t worry if you repeat a crop plan according to the wrong schedule! Now you can also…
Delete your crop plans
Yes! We finally did it! You can now delete your erroneous crop plans!*
* However, there are terms and conditions. You can only delete crop plans that satisfy the following conditions:
The crop plan has not been completed or abandoned
None of the tasks on the crop plan have been completed or abandoned
Otherwise, have at it - clear the clutter! Just be aware that once you delete a crop plan it will be gone from your view and irretrievable without contacting LiteFarm support.
Other fun stuff
But wait, that’s not all! A few other highlights include:
You can now assign a crop plan to an individual while you're creating it. This will automatically assign all tasks generated from that crop plan to the assigned individual. Post-creation tasks can be re-assigned as you see fit.
Harvest tasks that you complete will now automatically sum against the parent crop plan. You can now compare your estimated and actual harvest amounts by viewing the details page of each of your crop plans.
It should now be clearer when tasks are associated with inactive users. We hope this will make it much easier to find and re-assign tasks assigned to folks who are no longer working on your farm. We’ll build on this for our October “Finances 1.5” release to reflect inactive users in labour finances as well.
We’ve made a few changes to the way LiteFarm sends emails and we now hope fewer of them should end up in your spam folder.
For a complete (and very technical) list of changes, click here.
A look ahead
Looking forward, our next releases will take place in October and include a number of enhancements to Finances that we’re tentatively calling “Finances 1.5”. For the last part of 2023, we’ll be focusing on livestock related features with a release early in the new year.
You can review all of these items and vote for your priorities on our public roadmap here. If you’re looking for other ways to get involved, please don't hesitate to reach out to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In closing, thank you so much for being part of the LiteFarm Community. We're proud to support you and thousands of farmers in 145 countries, and we hope this newest release will continue to help you thrive in your farming endeavours. As always, happy farming!!
The LiteFarm Team