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June 11, 2019

Excel & CSV export: updated duration notation

When exporting time entries or projects from mite to Excel or as a CSV, we used to convert the duration to decimal hours. From now on, we display the duration in the hours:minutes notation and additionally in minutes. For example, one and a half hour used to be shown as 1.5. Now, you’ll see 1:30 as well as 90 minutes.

If you still prefer decimal hours, Excel or other spreadsheet software can convert the duration for you. Please divide the minutes by 60, and format cells to display numbers with 2 decimals. It would be an extra step—but hopefully an easy one, manageable by non-Excel-magicians too.

Whenever possible, we strive not to hinder or break existing workflows. This time though, we decided to change things because so much feedback reached us asking for a change. Yes, decimal hours made further processing easy, but you told us that they were also confusing to some, not precise enough or too technical to others. It seems that the one notation, perfect for everybody, does not exist. That’s why we went for a combination: one, hours:minutes, the notation well-known from mite‘s user interface and easily readable by humans, two, mere minutes, the exact notation easily readable by software, and thus easily processable by humans. Furthermore, we won’t have to round the duration anymore, and thus hopefully won’t confuse anybody with revenue calculation.

A warm thank you to all users who got in touch and made us understand why they weren’t happy with the former notation. We’d be glad to hear from you if this update makes your reporting easier!

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Update, June 14th: Your feedback was quite clear: This update was not helpful for most users, quite the contrary. You want the old notation back. We did not expect to judge the situation so badly. We are sorry.

Thus we just decided to roll-back the update. Instead we’ll add a setting, thanks to which you’ll be able to choose the notation that works best for you. We hope to deploy this update’s update until next Monday, June 17th. Please hang on.

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Update II, June 14th: He have just deployed the new setting. You can now choose which format suits you best when exporting to Excel or as a CSV. Please find a detailed description in our new blog post.

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