Informant

This add-on is operated by Informant, LLC

Real-time usability monitoring for Ruby on Rails.

Informant

Last Updated: 21 April 2015

Table of Contents

Informant is a real-time usability analytics tool that tracks user behavior through detecting & reporting all manner of form validation errors. Informant integrates directly with Rails & ActiveRecord and requires minimal configuration to get started. Once Informant is hooked up and doing its thing, you’ll be able to see exactly which interfaces and fields are giving your users the most trouble.

Provisioning the add-on

Informant can be attached to a Heroku application via the CLI:

A list of all plans available can be found here.

$ heroku addons:add informant
-----> Adding informant to sharp-mountain-4005... done, v18 (free)

Once Informant has been added, an INFORMANT_API_KEY setting will be available in the app configuration and will contain the API key required for your application to communicate with the Informant servers. This can be confirmed using the heroku config:get command.

$ heroku config:get INFORMANT_API_KEY
dsfhjklasdjfjkdsajklj234h23iu4932hrejwhr

After installing Informant, the application should be configured to fully integrate with the add-on.

Using with Rails 3.x and 4.x

Ruby on Rails applications will need to add the following entry into their Gemfile specifying the informant client library.

gem 'informant-rails'

Update application dependencies with bundler.

$ bundle install

Informant will automatically track form validation errors in ActiveRecord models on your server. No other setup is required!

Dashboard

The Informant dashboard allows you to easily identify which form submissions are triggering the most errors. You can use this information to debug as well as improve the usability of your forms. Once you have Informant’s insight into the errors your users are encountering, you’ll be able to redesign your forms to help your users submit successfully the first time.

The dashboard can be accessed via the CLI:

$ heroku addons:open informant
Opening informant for sharp-mountain-4005…

or by visiting the Heroku Dashboard. Just select Informant from the Add-ons menu.

Troubleshooting

If your application does not seem to be reporting data, verify that the API key is present in your application config and that the gem is installed. Remember that it only tracks form submissions, so if no models have been validated on the server, no data will be present. Once users submit some forms and trigger some errors you’ll start to see valuable data.

Migrating between plans

Application owners should carefully manage the migration timing to ensure proper application function during the migration process.

Use the heroku addons:upgrade command to migrate to a new plan.

$ heroku addons:upgrade informant:newplan
-----> Upgrading informant:newplan to sharp-mountain-4005... done, v18 ($49/mo)
       Your plan has been updated to: informant:newplan

Removing the add-on

Informant can be removed via the CLI.

This will destroy all associated data and cannot be undone!

$ heroku addons:remove informant
-----> Removing informant from sharp-mountain-4005... done, v20 (free)

Support

All Informant support and runtime issues should be submitted via on of the Heroku Support channels. Any non-support related issues or product feedback is welcome via Twitter at @informantapp or email at informantapp@gmail.com.