2. Up come the servers
This week we set up our servers in Canada, after running hundreds of tests on our staging platform.
Something Interesting: Typography
Typography is like wine; while subtle, the nuances convey distinguishing features that alter our perspective and heighten our appreciation. We’ve landed on Proxima Nova (and its condensed variant) by Mark Simonson and Trajan Pro 3 by Adobe, chosen because we feel it conveys our principles and culture.
Proxima Nova is a workhorse for human legibility, with elegant simplicity, superb proportions, and consistent quality — we hope this choice reduces your cognitive load as your brain processes the information conveyed by Conductor. Trajan is an all-capitals typeface dating back to Roman antiquity, found on pillars from the empire. The digital version was created by Adobe from a rubbing, and it engenders feelings of confidence and stability.
Here’s this week’s pin-board:
We’re getting close to a broad release!
Multiple jurisdictional hosting
Conductor now lets you connect to servers around the world and meet any legal and optical perceptions. Go to https://app.conductor.law and connect.
🤓 A multi-jurisdictional app comes with special considerations, mostly security related - two in particular. Cross-Origin-Resource-Sharing (CORS) which deals with who the server lets talk to it and Content-Security-Policy (CSP), which tells your web browser (Chrome, Firefox, Safari, etc) with whom Conductor should communicate.
A lot of the code for multi-jurisdictional hosting is usable for client portal, which is on our TODO.
Welcome chat and support system
We’ve also updated our on-board and help systems creating pop-up messages that guide you through document creation. There’s a lot in Conductor and we want to keep every step fast and simple for you.
We worked on validation items, like share capital, for instance. We now test if no capital is issued, and if there are no voting shareholders. Pretty basic stuff…but a critical timesaver.
We’ve enhanced the one-click pop-up so now it displays an “Add a corporation’ quick menu and guides you through easy basics (legal name, officers, directors, fiscal year end, incorporation date). Plus it auto-checks the system for duplicates, in case the legal name is already in the system.
We revamped our build system to accommodate the new separation between Conductor-the-application and Conductor-the-server(s). And we switched from the new-and-fancy task-runner gulp to the archaic but dependable Makefile.
🤓 Back in 2008 we started with Makefiles, then switched to the simpler and more elegant Cakefile, which ultimately proved inadequate for our needs, so we moved on to Grunt, because it scaled better and had a better ecosystem of plugins. Then we switched to Gulp a few years ago because some Grunt plugins were fatally ill-conceived forcing us to rewrite huge swaths of code to make it possible for our source code to be a usable product. Chris Carton suggested, a weeks ago, moving back to Makefiles. So far so good.
We now use Docker extensively, as it compiles our code essentially into a reusable binary that we can put on a variety of hosting providers, such as Google Cloud. We used to use Ansible, which rebuilt our code on a new server based on a set of commands but our configuration was thousands of lines long, and we regularly had to tweak it for the latest operating systems or hosting platforms. We briefly tried Kubernetes, but it overcomplicated our deployment setup for very marginal gain. We’ll write more about that soon.
Here’s what’s coming next on both the tech and content side:
- Update our precedents to include incorporation articles and annual minutes for Federal and Ontario
- Multi-user setup for admin, account discovery, multi-firm users
- Evaluate and possibly implement Section 85 rollovers
- Testing our implementations of Articles and Form 1 filing with Cyberbahn and/or ESC Corp.
- Add Intercom messages so chats are invited at key places
- Start the electronic signatures design flow
We think we’ve captured the myriad of complex edge cases for signatures for easy use. Here’s how Conductor asks for them:
In this example — a waiver in the annual minutes that the directors are waiving, Conductor will automatically use the list of directors that are active on the date of the document. 90% of the time this is the case and with this feature No action is needed other than a quick review and a clicking to create a PDF.
Of course, there’s a dropdown to show who else might sign such a document.
And there are options to skip directors, and indicate their proxies or agents, if any.
When there’s no one in the corporate record for a given role on the date of signatures, this will appear:
For a one-off document, there is a button to add signatories in the given role. Any number of signatories can be added, with agents/proxies as necessary.
You can mix-and-match the signatories that are skipped or added, their agents, in a way that we hope covers every possible permutation of edge cases that you ever need to cover.
Here’s what those signatures will look like when printed. Note the lead-in, which identifies the document. To prevent orphan lines this lead-in is printed at the top of every new page.
Conductor’s signatures are a signature feature that makes life easier for the busy lawyer.
We hope tags Conductor become a valuable part of your workflow.
🤓 = nerd asides