Weekly Journal 83 - Open Source Kanban

Open Source Kanban Apps

I have been looking for a really nice open source Kanban application for some time now. Sadly, I think I am going to throw in the towel as I don’t believe a really good app exists in the open source space. The two best I’ve found are Taiga and Wekan. Both of them are way more complex than I need and would require more effort than I want to invest to self host.

I have seen a couple of CLI Kanban applications, kanban.bash and clikan, that look promising. I’ll trial both of these apps in the coming weeks to see if they are able to manage my projects. In the interim, I have come up with an alternate solution.

Kanban in a Text File

Instead of using a specialized Kanban tool, I have created a Kanban flow inside of a Markdown file. Instead of having the nice horizontal columns of a typical Kanban board, my Markdown board is a collection of nested lists. Each lists represents a column in a traditional Kanban board. Instead of dragging and dropping cards across columns as task proceeds from start to completed, I cut and paste my tasks into the list.

One aspect of this that I really like is that I can have multiple levels of Kanban boards that are linked together. This makes it easy to have a high-level board with my projects on it, and each project then links to a sub-board that has all the tasks and details. It helps to keep me organized without getting overwhelmed by having all of the tasks for all projects in one view. If the CLI Kanban apps don’t satisfy my needs, I am confident that this will be a workable alternative.