Rija Development: Intro

I have started developing Rija, a native Mac (and possibly iOS) app for tracking issues in Jira. I’m experimenting with developing in the open. While I was creating a Twitter thread on developing Rija, I realized there are technical details that might interest other developers that won’t fit a tweet.

This post is the first in a series of posts detailing Rija’s development journey. Future posts are going to be more technical than this one.

Why am I Making Rija?

I used Bee, a Mac issue tracking app that worked with Jira and GitHub issues. The developer stopped developing Bee. I remember some people were upset about the news. I didn’t think much about it and moved on to doing issue tracking online and using text files on my Mac.

Then I saw Atlassian announced they were stopping development of their Mac Jira app. People were disappointed to hear this news.

After doing some more research I learned people hated using Jira’s website. The website is slow and uses lots of RAM. The website does not support Dark Mode. I saw numerous complaints about the difficulty of figuring out how to do things on Jira’s website.

I realized I could help people by making a native Mac app for Jira. A native app would be faster than the website and use less RAM. A native app supports both Light and Dark modes. Developers wouldn’t need to have a browser tab open for hours at a time and wouldn’t have to worry about mistakenly closing the tab. Issue tracking is the area where developers spend the most time on Jira so I should focus on that first.

Rija’s Technology Stack

I’m using SwiftUI to make Jira. By using SwiftUI I can make Rija run on both Mac and iOS. I’m focusing on the Mac version first because Atlassian stopped making a Mac app and continue to develop an iOS app for Jira.

Rija’s Current Development Status

Rija is in the very early stages of development. I wanted to know if I could work with Jira’s REST APIs in a Mac app. I was able to get a list of projects, a list of issues for a project, and show an issue’s summary and details using my Jira account.

The next step in Rija’s development is to get the app to work for anyone with a Jira account. That’s what I’m working on right now.

If you are interested in trying Rija when it’s ready for me to show to other people, go to the Rija page and sign up for the newsletter using the form in the sidebar.