Web Tools Weekly
What a Tool!

Issue #353  (AnnounceKit Review, Vue Tools, JSON/DB, Mobile)04/23/20

The following intro is a paid product review for AnnounceKit, a hosted changelog or product update service that provides a communication channel between your product and end-users.

What's the best way to inform your users that your product has been updated? This is important especially with web apps that are able to update behind the scenes and users are often left in the dark on what's new.

Of course, if a user wants to know what's new, they can check GitHub or look for the product's social media channels. But how much better if your product's updates are integrated into the web app itself. That's where AnnounceKit comes in.

AnnounceKit: A product updates and changelog service

AnnounceKit allows you to add posts that are hosted at a location like "changelog.example.com". That location holds a series of updates that itemize your product's changes, and they're searchable and filterable by category, as shown in the following single post example:

AnnounceKit posts categorized
A single product update, categorized and filterable

Posts can be created using a WYSIWYG editor that includes ability to add styles, embed video, and an option to label your post according to some predefined categories:

AnnounceKit's WYSIWYG Editor for posts
AnnounceKit's WYSIWYG editor for posts

You can integrate different types of widgets within your app to notify users of changes and updates. The widgets point to your posts, as shown above. One of the widgets offered is the animated Count Badge Widget that triggers a dropdown on click:

AnnounceKit's Count Badge Widget
AnnounceKit's Count Badge Widget

There's also a Sidebar Widget that opens when the user clicks something like a "What's New" link:

AnnounceKit's Sidebar Widget
AnnounceKit's Sidebar Widget

In addition, there's a widget you can embed directly into a page (like the sidebar or footer of your app), displaying product updates in blog list format:

AnnounceKit's Embed Widget
AnnounceKit's Embed Widget

AnnounceKit also gives you the ability to integrate with popular apps you already use like GitHub, Slack, Twitter, and lots more. These integrations allow you to quickly and easily push out product announcements and changes.

AnnounceKit integrations
AnnounceKit integrates with apps you already use

Other features available in AnnounceKit include the ability to:

  • Collect user feedback about updates
  • Enable users to sign up for email notifications on changes
  • Send different updates to different users via Segmentation
  • Publish in multiple languages
  • And lots more

Because I write this newsletter, I deal with a lot of tool websites. And I can tell you from experience that it's often difficult to find out when a product was last updated and what those updates were added. A service like AnnounceKit removes that hurdle so everyone is up to date and the updates are easy to find and integrated into your application.

AnnounceKit offers a 30-day trial for the highest tier as well as a free-forever version that's useful for trying out the basics, or if you don't need any of the advanced features.

As a promotion for this issue, AnnounceKit is offering 20% off their "Startup" plan. Just use discount code WEBTOOLSWEEKLY. So check out AnnounceKit if you're in the market for an easy-to-integrate changelog for your product or service.

Now on to this week's tools!

Vue Tools

A carousel component for Vue inspired by the Slick carousel. Simple, touch-friendly, and no other dependencies.

Vue Dynamic Forms
An easy way to dynamically create reactive forms in Vue based on varying business and regulatory requirements of your site or app.

A @mention and #hashtag component for inputs and textareas.

Now at version 1.5. A PDF viewer for Vue using Mozilla's PDF.js.

Vue I18n
An internationalization plugin for Vue with a simple API and includes support for translation and localization (e.g. pluralization, number, date/time, etc).

Vue version of XState, a library for creating, interpreting, and executing finite state machines and statecharts.

Stale-while-revalidate data fetching for Vue.

A renderless Vue.js component to improve estimated input latency and time to interactive of server-side rendered Vue applications.

Inspired by react-adaptive-hooks, a collection of Vue 3.0 composition API functions and utilities to allow your apps to adapt your user's Network conditions,  battery status, etc.

Vue Formulate
The easiest way to build forms using Vue. Field validation, file uploads, form generation, help text, error messages, placeholders and more.

JSON, Databases, GraphQL, etc.

Advanced React & GraphQL by Wes Bos is 50% Off!
The master package includes 68 HD videos, part of 10 modules – and updates to the course are free forever.   promoted 

A free, open-source SQL editor with inline data visualization. Supports connecting to RedShift, MySQL, PostgreSQL, IBM DB2, Impala, MS SQL, Oracle, SQLite, and more.

Now at version 2+. Free HTTP-based JSON storage.

Verify JSON
Library to verify JSON structure easily using a lightweight JSON schema syntax.

A database built for data people. A model-driven graph database designed specifically for the web.

IndexedDB with Usability
Now at version 5+. A tiny library that mostly mirrors the IndexedDB API, but with small improvements that make a big difference to usability.

A starter kit for projects using TypeScript, Express.js, and Apollo GraphQL.

A modern, headless GraphQL-based e-commerce framework built with TypeScript and Node.

A GraphQL client without queries. Auto-generates GraphQL queries based on the data your application consumes.

A front-end Object-Relational Mapping layer for reactive real-time web applications using Firebase Realtime Database.

Mobile Tools and React Native

ES6 for Everyone by Wes Bos is 50% Off!
The master package includes 77 HD videos, part of 21 modules – and updates to the course are free forever.   promoted 

Animated hamburger menu icons for React. CSS-driven transitions, created to be as elegant and performant as possible.

A set of design rules and component library that lets you prototype faster with easy to use cross-platform components.

Early access. Build your app, visually. Create, customize, and launch mobile apps all from your browser. Source code included.

An efficient, small and encrypted mobile key-value storage framework for React Native.

Turn your website into a fast, installable Progressive Web App (PWA) instantly.

Preview what your mobile app will look like in the iOS App Store. Just type the details and see the live preview.

React Native Web Template
Template project for creating iOS, Android, and Web apps with React Native.

A new hypermedia format and React Native client for developing server-driven mobile apps.

Bravo Studio
Turn Figma prototypes into native iOS and Android apps instantly with no code.

React Native Material UI
Highly customizable Material Design components for React Native.

A Tweet for Thought

Here's a good thread from Fran Swaine on how to avoid burnout while freelancing.

Send Me Your Tools!

Made something? Send links via Direct Message on Twitter @WebToolsWeekly (details here). No tutorials or articles, please. If you have any suggestions for improvement or corrections, feel free to reply to this email.

Before I Go...

Phuoc Nguyen, who I featured a few issues back with his great project called HTML DOM, has built another great project called 1loc – a categorized list of vanilla JavaScript one-liners.

Thanks to all for subscribing and reading!

Keep tooling,