Tales from Fleep: Estimations and Commitments

I’m sure that most developers reading this post are painfully aware that when building something new from scratch, such as Fleep, estimating things can be quite hard. When you’re doing something for the first time you won’t have the backing experience behind you that would allow you to precisely determine how much time creating a new feature exactly takes.

Three weeks ago, before we launched the Fleep native apps and Android, our presence features in the new client were at stake. Regardless of the fact that making an estimation would have been close to impossible the feature was still required. Andres, our web wizard, committed to delivering it before the end of the week.

“Fine”, said Henn, “I’ll bring you 2 cases of beer and you can gladly go on your skiing vacation if you think you can get the presence features done by the end of the week”. And so a commitment was made between Henn and Andres.

Here’s a picture from yesterday with Andres and his two cases of beer earned fair and square. You can guess how this commitment played out. Well played, isn’t it?  :)


Running a start-up can be a tricky business, in the beginning all it takes a slice of free pizza and a few bottles of beer to keep the momentum going. The longer you do it, the higher the stakes, but challenging people still seems to work wonders!

We proudly presence

fleep hiWhen we started Fleep, we decided that we wouldn’t be taking the usual approach to presence with little green and red buttons that show who’s online and offline. Nowadays, everyone is always online, but rarely around, so it makes little sense to have it as a feature. But we noticed some other important presence features to implement that are useful.

From time to time, you wonder if messages written in a conversation have already been read or if someone is already writing a reply on the other end of the line. Sometimes, you just want to know when others were last active!

To solve these sticky situations, we’d like to introduce a couple of new features:

fleep writingWriting Indicator

A dotted animation in the chat window, on top of the message entry area, that indicates that other chat participants are typing a reply. This will be handy when you find yourself in a heated conversation with your buddies.

Seen by indicator

For those moments when you need to know who of your chat buddies is on the same page as you are. The seen by indicator is an easy chat message divider that allows you to see who has already read all the messages in a chat and to what extent.

fleep seen by

Last Seen info

We’ve also added an extra bit of information to the user profiles. When you open a conversation members list, it reveals when members were last seen in Fleep.

fleep members

What if I don’t want to show my presence to anyone?

No worries, we’ve thought about that too. You can turn these nifty little features off any time you like, just open Account preferences and untick the box Show my presence status to other users.

account pref

If you untick the setting, you’ll turn off all notifications for presence: Writing Indicator, Seen By Indicator as well as Last Seen information.

Here’s a quick video guide of the Fleep presence features:

If you feel like we’re still missing something, feel free to give us feedback or share your feature requests. We’ll be glad to chat with you in Fleep Support chat!

What be Fleep?

Thanks to the wonderful animations and sound work the guys from Tolm Stuudio here in Estonia did, we have a chance to share our awesome explainer video about Fleep. Check it out and let us know what you think!

In case you didn’t notice we now have a new YouTube  channel as well, we will be posting more video content in the future, so you better subscribe already now!