Subject: Re: Economics of software distribution
From: "Marty Leisner" <leisner@ESO.MC.XEROX.COM>
Date: Thu, 18 Mar 1993 13:56:53 PST

In message <> you write:
>code, documentation, and user-orientation as the commercial ones.  And
>that's because the effort required to build software that actually solves
>users' problems well is much higher than the effort required to build
>software that just sort of does the job.

agreed...its the difference between something which just works and something
which works well...

I've found you're more productive with something which works well (with a higher
up front cost).   Many times when I finally decided to "fix" something, I should
have fixed it a long time ago (it probably would be cheaper).

You can pay now or keep paying...

>Let me share a story with you.  Yesterday I was visiting a company where a
>friend of mine works as the system administrator.  We were talking about
>SLIP and PPP, which they were just starting to install.  I don't remember
>how the topic came up, but he said that he'd looked at 3 or 4 different
>freely available PPP packages, and he'd given up on all of them, and gone
>with a commercial package instead.  He said that what happened with every
>one of them was that they didn't really quite work, and after fiddling
>around trying to get them to work, modifying the kernel, etc., etc., he
>just decided it wasn't worth his time.

Its funny...on my DOS machine, I run msh and join...NOTHING INSTALLS!!
I've used NCSA telnet and several commercial lan packages...NCSA was more
understandable, took less time and was more flexible...

Like I said, I wouldn't mind commercial software so much IF I had source...

Member of the League for Programming Freedom
"I just know I'm a better manager when I have Joe DiMaggio in center field" -- Casey