With the use of a very visual commenting system akin to Figma’s, Vercel, a well-known front-end development platform, now lets you comment immediately on preview deployments. Since September, the business has been testing this feature, which is now generally accessible to all users.
Guillermo Rauch, co-founder and CEO of Vercel, said to me that the goal was to increase the number of individuals who could participate in the process while making it easier to collaborate on top of the company’s current development infrastructure.
The main idea was to enable multiplayer collaboration on top of people’s existing working methods, such as papers or image files, similar to how Figma and Google Docs did for front-end development, he said.
One of Vercel’s first improvements was to provide a URL that displayed the current state of the front-end application whenever there was a pull request. By including a new UI element to these previews that enables you to post comments and examine existing ones, our new commenting system expands on that. Since Vercel provides these previews directly, the business can include them without the use of a browser extension (though there is also a Chrome extension to enable an additional feature that allows you to add screenshots to your comments).
The new commenting system is, for the most part, rather simple. Emoji reactions are available, along with all the other features you’d anticipate from a commenting system in 2022, such as an inbox that compiles the most recent remarks. According to Vercel CTO Malte Ubl, the business formerly made it possible to doodle on a page. That wasn’t included in the finished product, but it might be in a later one.
Ubl observed that the tool’s beta testers favored short bursts of use. “You may not always have things you wish to review in this manner. Developers don’t operate like that, he continued. There could be modifications that aren’t at all graphical. Then your pull request review is OK because you don’t require this product. However, when businesses prepare to launch, we observe them in our data increasing from a few comment threads to 100 per day.
Today, the new commenting function is being rolled out to all Vercel users.