Pulpit Rock, Cape Schanck, near Melbourne, Australia (January 2020)
About a year ago I needed to take a sabbatical from writing TNT.tips because of a major project I am working on in my organization. I can say, looking backwards, that it was a wise decision as 2019 turned out to be the most taxing year of my career in ministry. It reminds me of the day I learned to water ski as a college student, hanging on to a long rope while being pummeled by the wake of the boat.
Thankfully, 2020 has started out at a more reasonable pace… more like a normal year should. With the one exception being that it is February 21 and it feels like January 5! This is due to the lingering holdover from 2019 being wrapped up. (The picture above was from a recent trip to Melbourne where we’re beginning the 2020 project.)
With a window of opportunity, I want to start posting in http://www.TNT.Tips again, using the classic wedding adage…
Something old, something new, something borrowed, something blue
From the “something old” department: In 2015 I created a “video of the week” series for TntMPD. I posted it on a partner site called SmartStory, which hosted our video series pro bono as I was helping them explore this new video training tool.
Unfortunately, within weeks of completing those 52 videos, TntMPD’s name changed to TntConnect. And within about two years, SmartStory discontinued the hosted video product as it was not viable for them or their paid customers; they instead decided only to invest in their main platform.
Even though those videos all say TntMPD on them, the content is the same and the software is (for the most part) unchanged on the described features. Each video is approximately 2 minutes, and are designed to explore a lot of the basics of TNT. I’m confident they still have a lot of value, and will use this blog to post one of them [almost] every week for the next year.
To that end, after I send the introductory video next week, I would encourage you to link others to it who may benefit from learning more about the basics of TNT. And who knows, you may learn something too!
From the “something new” department, you have probably heard that there is a new release of TntConnect coming out very soon, TntConnect 4.0. This is a “major change” for the database, so if you upgrade, your database will be adapted to the new version and no longer work in 3.5.
There are not a lot of new features from a user’s perspective, but the underlying technology is driving this change. Specifically, this change adapts better to the recent improvements in DonorHub, and it also solves a major incompatibility with Mac OS Catalina.
Note: If you import donations into TntConnect using the Tools > Update Donor/Gift Info from File, this feature will not be in 4.0. In my experience keeping an eye on the forums, this feature creates among the highest frequency of help requests and is among the most problematic. Not because of TNT itself, but because of issues with the files that people or ministries create. This feature is a legacy feature from 10-20 years ago when very few organizations could send data via the web. That has changed now, so it’s time to close the loop on this feature.
While this feature is going away, if it is critical to you, then you can keep using 3.5 forever–as long as your system supports it. (Yes, there are still people using TNT 1.6 and 2.0!).
Looking forward a great new year with you!