Tim, if you had a util like smtpmail or pdfinclude I would go out of my wayto try and incorporate them in my projects and if I'd recommend it, it wouldget bought.
Tim, if you had a util like smtpmail or pdfinclude I would go out of my way
to try and incorporate them in my projects and if I'd recommend it, it would
To be sure, there are some utilities .. and you have picked two good candidates ... which have potential as commercial products, but I think there are a lot more where there is much more of an uphill proposition, particularly if they are aimed at the developer instead of deployment. To be sure, developer productivity should be a good investment, but in the Progress world at least, it seems to be a hard sell.
Which said, it doesn't mean that one can't make voluntary payments for things which are appreciated and there is nothing to keep you from hiring the author as a consultant.
Consulting in Model-Based Development, Transformation, and Object-Oriented Best Practice http://www.cintegrity.com
PDF include was a great example of a good product with a lot of inherent value that failed to produce any reasonable revenue while it was "voluntary payment" open source.
The code I've released hasn't gotten many comments unless people had questions. I don't think there's even much liklihood of getting an ego-boost of knowing your code's being used by a lot of people.
The value could be getting you recognition so when you meet people at conferences on sales calls, you'll have a positive first impression to build on.
PDF include was a great example of a good product with a lot of inherentvalue that failed to produce any reasonable revenue while it was "voluntarypayment" open source.
PDF include was a great example of a good product with a lot of inherent
value that failed to produce any reasonable revenue while it was "voluntary
payment" open source.
Which is why I would never go that route with the goal of making money. But, I am also skeptical about trying to sell it and make any reasonable amount of money. I suspect that, in most cases, the only way that any of these things produce serious money is when they lead to consulting work.
I do think that people get recognition and it has a very real value, like, consulting.
The same as with someone writing a book, forums, wiki's etc.
We all have experience and expertise with different technologies and solutions.
Maybe if someone did work or has experience with a certain technology he would put an extra effort to put together a util, and upgrades if he got payed for it.
And I do think it's worth the while, considerably more then consulting by the hour, there's a limit to how much one can charge hourly
It would probably be much more interesting then most of the same old, routine consulting gigs.
I think, that there is a very real need and maybe we should play with different models besides open source.
We'd all love to see more 3rd party developments and have more options.
Just to be clear I'm not proposing we pay for them but sell them to our clients.
I don't know about contractors or private developers paying for software but it's not an issue for most companies.
The history of third party tools for Progress development is a graveyard. Very few have survived. A few had a short promissing time in the sun, but it was short, often because they were addressing deficiencies in version N of Progress and when it got to N1 or N2, either PSC had a competing solution or had in some other way taken a branch which the tool vendor wasn't nimble enough to follow.
Not saying it is impossible, but it sure isn't easy.
Funny, I can't think of any, which ones ?
But maybe I'm trying too hard I remember the freeframework put together some utilities.
I don't know if things like pdfinclude would ever compete with Progress ?
Can't think of any that survived or can't think of any that failed to survive.
Note that I am thinking here more of companies that produced more complete and expensive tools. I can't think of anyone who produced small, inexpensive things as a main business.
With an enormous amount of email collaboration with Thomas Mercer-Hursh, for some time now Jurjen Dijkstra and I have been feverishly constructing a new site for freely hosting OE centric open source projects. It is comprehensive, with source control repositories, issue tracking, forums, product home pages... the whole works. It looks great already, and I'll be sure to post the URL here when we're ready for show and tell!
Proparse would be one example of a PSC-associated tools company.
FWIW, the company is Joanju and the product is Proparse.
While Joanju continues to exist, it also illustrates the principle. Why hasn't every ABL development shop on the planet acquired a license? I don't know how many licenses have been sold, but it can't be any more than a drop in that bucket.
The tools that I'd want would make our programs look better, let us create documents like pdf, open office, office, vml/svg graphs etc. and make them run faster.
And even more important would be simple enough that everyone could use.
So, there are two problems ... one is a place to find, share, and improve the tools that exist and the other is to cause tools to come into existence which no one has done yet. I think we know how to solve the first one. The second will take individual imagination and effort.
One of the dilemmas, of course, is that there are so many people stuck on old versions. If I make a tool that works in Eclipse, my audience is semi-limited to the people who have 10.1A. If I make a tool that create ABL class code from UML, my audience is definitely limited to people who have 10.1A.
I haven't yet come up with much of an answer to that problem.
There's another problem - namely publicity.
"Demand" or "I need this here" may cause tools to come to exist, but it won't get them widely due to the limited market awareness.
The tools themselves need to be written so they'll work back 1 or more version or so due to the limited audience cutting-edge releases have.
Someone recently turned my attention to SVG and I've seen some very impressive graphs done in SVG.
That's an example of a relatively small size util I could certainly use with Webspeed and I'd be happy to buy something like that (for a reasonable price).
"Demand" or "I need this here" may cause tools to come to exist, but itwon't get them widely due to the limited market awareness.
"Demand" or "I need this here" may cause tools to come to exist, but it
won't get them widely due to the limited market awareness.
That certainly is a big problem and one where I am also short on ideas. A certain percentage of the Progress world pays attention to PEG, PSDN, and ProgressTalk and some subscribe to Progressions, but this has to be an incredibly small percentage of the total and I have no clue how one reaches the rest. Some of them certainly have no developers, but lots of them do have.