Wish List - What are you willing to BUY?

Wish List - What are you willing to BUY?

Post by Marc Donov » Tue, 09 Sep 1997 04:00:00




>In order to jump start Linux into a world class OS (read - significant
>slice on those pie charts showing who'se using which OS), we all know
>that we need commercial apps that Joe Q Public will be willing to buy.
>(This is why MS is big and OS/2 and System 7 and etc... are small).
>This means we need to have commercial developers out there porting and
>writing for Linux.  As a commercial developer, I know that a fragile
>OS reflects on my products, but switching to a heavy-duty OS with no
>market-share is often suicidal in this business.  (I know three Apple
>developers off-hand looking for work).
>So, that being said, what do you folks think we weekly-pay-check types
>need to develop?  What could we provide for $$ that is lacking in the
>curent Linux App market?  In your replies, include a good description
>and a good idea of the market share and what would a good price be for
>the product.  Avoid any product ideas that are already covered by
>freeware unless an "new and improved" product will make it.
>I know there are a lot of commercial developers that lurk these
>groups, so you will be talking to that audience.  The more ideas you
>provide, the more likely these products will get built.

Since I have received no responses, I must assume that there are no
products that Linux users would be wiiling to pay for.  So we
commercial programmers will have to follow the herd to M$ (much as I
regret that).  Am I wrong here?

Marc Donovan
10-4 Systems
Office Wizard - Office Management System
AMS - Pesticide Tracking System
www.OfficeWizard.com

 
 
 

Wish List - What are you willing to BUY?

Post by Philip E Cuton » Wed, 10 Sep 1997 04:00:00




> >the product.  Avoid any product ideas that are already covered by
> >freeware unless an "new and improved" product will make it.
...
> Since I have received no responses, I must assume that there are no
> products that Linux users would be wiiling to pay for.  So we

a good bit of the philosophy behind Linux users is free and freely
distributable is better.  A large portion of the reason that Joe Q
Public does not have an Interest in Linux are the lack of an "Idiot
Interface" and lack of commercial programs.  Most people would love
the stable, powerful, and flexable enviroment Linux offers, but they
do not want to have to tinker.  In this case, this means (for example)
that they do not want to fool around with emacs when what they are
used to is a WYSIWYG word processor.

The main things people use the computer for in business and home are the
following (personal observation, not based on actual statistics):
WYSIWYG Word Processing
Spreadsheets
Communication (email/fax/ppp)
Database (user and programmer sides)
Web browsing
Specialized programs (statistical, CAD, graphical, etc)
Games

more often than not, many of those programs are integrated to work
together.

What Linux needs to become more available to the mainstream is free or
very low cost versions of all these.

i've not had my linux box up for a couple of years (no home computer,
and i had to convert my work box to NT only when i ran out of disk
space.) so i'm not sure what is currently out there.  from what i
remember there is:
Free spreadsheets (thought not as powerful)
Email: just about any "standard" client
PPP: Connection to the world fairly easily (still have to pay provider)
web Browsing: i think netscape has a linux version available.

So what we are left with (besides bringing the above programs up to
par) is a good Word Processing program (verses emacs, the god-like
text editor) All sorts of sprcialized programs (photoshop replacement)
Cad programs, database server (with programmer interface tools), and
lots of games.

A hard goal to reach, indeed.

What we need to do, it start writing programs which DO NOT depend on
specialized system calls.  Code can be written to be cross platform
compatable if the coders (or their bosses) are not idiots.  the
problem here being, Microsloth and others will not be able to pull
their old tricks of calling undocumented code just to make their
software better than anything else out there.  Then, porting the code
is cheap and you don't have to pay 500% more for the unix version.

the other route linux could take to become more "public-friendly" is
to make a good emmulator which would allow NT/Windows/Apple programs
to run under X. (or even stand alone)   then people could buy programs
and games for those systems and not have to worry about the lag time
to have it developed under unix.  I know linux can run most any dos
program... and i hear it can run some windows 3.1 and NT/95
software... but I've heard it's not up to par.

oh well... i don't have the time to write more....
if anyone knows of some programs already available (word procs, sql
server, etc) which i thought were missing, i'd like to know.... of
course, i'll be looking for them myself when i eventually get my own
system so it's not required... but it would be nice to know ahead of
time...  

toodols
flip

 
 
 

Wish List - What are you willing to BUY?

Post by David Buba » Wed, 10 Sep 1997 04:00:00


[snip!]

Quote:> Since I have received no responses, I must assume that there are no
> products that Linux users would be wiiling to pay for.  So we
> commercial programmers will have to follow the herd to M$ (much as I
> regret that).  Am I wrong here?

Yes you are wrong! though it depends on the price. Linux users want more bang
for teir buck than Wintendo users expect. I also will agree that SOME users
will use NOTHING but GNU products.

I myself would be willing to pay for:

Office Suites - especially the building block kind OPenDoc like
Games - esp the kind that let you build your own levels that you can share
Visual Code Builders - maybe something built around the GNU tools but a nice
visual interface.
Bible Software - I would buy this!!
Recipe Program - Please make it MealMaster Compatible, maybe throw in a
NewsReader with filing capabilities. My Wife would buy THIS One!!!
Print Master Programs, Card Makers there is all kinds of stuff that could be
programed & sold.

Also see if there are companies that don't want to support the Linux market
but may be willing to let you port & sell there software to such a"niche
market"

--
The Universe is contingent upon the existence of a
benevolent, immutable, universally non-contingent being
----------------------------------------------------------


 
 
 

Wish List - What are you willing to BUY?

Post by Christopher Brow » Wed, 10 Sep 1997 04:00:00


On Tue,  9 Sep 1997 11:19:57 -0400, Philip E Cutone


>The main things people use the computer for in business and home are the
>following (personal observation, not based on actual statistics):
>WYSIWYG Word Processing
>Spreadsheets
>Communication (email/fax/ppp)
>Database (user and programmer sides)
>Web browsing
>Specialized programs (statistical, CAD, graphical, etc)
>Games

That's not a bad list.

Quote:>What Linux needs to become more available to the mainstream is free or
>very low cost versions of all these.

The folks at Caldera might disagree; they'd like to sell you
commercial packages in almost all of these categories.  (Games are the
only category where they don't have any coverage...)

Quote:>i've not had my linux box up for a couple of years (no home computer,
>and i had to convert my work box to NT only when i ran out of disk
>space.) so i'm not sure what is currently out there.  from what i
>remember there is:
>Free spreadsheets (thought not as powerful)

And some of the commercial ones are substantially more powerful than
the Windoze-based ones.  XeSS, NeXS and ApplixWare's packages provide
some "server" capabilities where the spreadsheet can be configured to
be a two-way "gateway/server."  Real time spreadsheet updates from
external data feeds are possible as well as controlling the
spreadsheet via external "server" commands.

Quote:>Email: just about any "standard" client

Lots of options...

Quote:>PPP: Connection to the world fairly easily (still have to pay provider)

Increasingly easy, as "point and drool" interfaces get constructed...

Quote:>web Browsing: i think netscape has a linux version available.

Caldera sells that...

Quote:>So what we are left with (besides bringing the above programs up to
>par) is a good Word Processing program (verses emacs, the god-like
>text editor) All sorts of sprcialized programs (photoshop replacement)
>Cad programs, database server (with programmer interface tools), and
>lots of games.

There aren't any really credible "free" wordprocessors, but there are
several commercial ones.

CorelDraw is available for Linux.  Or one can use the "free" GIMP
package that many swear by.

MicroStation is somewhat available in the CAD arena.

There are more than 20 SQL database systems available for Linux,
including a wide mixture of free and commercial packages.  See
<http://www.veryComputer.com/~cbbrowne/rdbms.html> for a complete list.

There are a number of "fax server" packages, some free, some
commercial.  "Hylafax" provides more functionality than any of the
PC-based fax packages can imagine...

Quote:>A hard goal to reach, indeed.

Hard to reach?  All that's needed is more "smart" integration between
packages.  There are credible pieces of software in every category
you've mentioned.
---
--

take you today?  A: Confutatis maledictis, flammis acribus *is...


 
 
 

Wish List - What are you willing to BUY?

Post by Chris Carlso » Wed, 10 Sep 1997 04:00:00




[...]
> Since I have received no responses, I must assume that there are no
> products that Linux users would be wiiling to pay for.  So we
> commercial programmers will have to follow the herd to M$ (much as I
> regret that).  Am I wrong here?

I missed your post, also.

I have actually paid for a lot of things on Linux because the cost was
reasonable and I don't mind paying for things if they are useful.

Here are things I've paid for:

        Netscape (because I want to support them)
        Motif (because I want to develop Motif apps)
        OpenGL (because I want to develop in OpenGL)

The only one I'm disappointed in is the OpenGL.  It was not quite as
versatile as I wanted and required me to run in 32-bit mode, using a
special X server.

What I would consider paying for are:

        GUI revision control system
        GUI web page builder
        WordPerfect
        Time management tool (like Synchronize from CrossWinds)
        Animation design tool

BUT, the cost has to be reasonable.  Depending on the complexity, I
*might* be able to go as high as $100.  Also, if I'm not happy with the
product, I'd like to be able to get most of my money back.

This is where freeware is so nice.  I can try out the product before I
pay for it.  In most cases, the product is *almost* what I want but a
very important feature is missing.

I'd tell you what's missing and other tools, but I don't want to give
away what I'm working on.  I'd like to make some money selling software,
too. :-)
--
      +----------------------------------------+
      | Christopher W. Carlson                 |


      | WWW: http://members.home.net/cwcarlson |
      +----------------------------------------+

 
 
 

Wish List - What are you willing to BUY?

Post by Nathan Han » Thu, 11 Sep 1997 04:00:00




> >In order to jump start Linux into a world class OS (read - significant
> >slice on those pie charts showing who'se using which OS), we all know
> >that we need commercial apps that Joe Q Public will be willing to buy.
> >(This is why MS is big and OS/2 and System 7 and etc... are small).
> >This means we need to have commercial developers out there porting and
> >writing for Linux.  As a commercial developer, I know that a fragile
> >OS reflects on my products, but switching to a heavy-duty OS with no
> >market-share is often suicidal in this business.  (I know three Apple
> >developers off-hand looking for work).

> >So, that being said, what do you folks think we weekly-pay-check types
> >need to develop?  What could we provide for $$ that is lacking in the
> >curent Linux App market?  In your replies, include a good description
> >and a good idea of the market share and what would a good price be for
> >the product.  Avoid any product ideas that are already covered by
> >freeware unless an "new and improved" product will make it.

> >I know there are a lot of commercial developers that lurk these
> >groups, so you will be talking to that audience.  The more ideas you
> >provide, the more likely these products will get built.

> Since I have received no responses, I must assume that there are no
> products that Linux users would be wiiling to pay for.  So we
> commercial programmers will have to follow the herd to M$ (much as I
> regret that).  Am I wrong here?

Sorry, I missed your post there...

I'd pay for decent games (ala Diablo, Warcraft, Grand Prix 2) on
Linux. There's a severe shortage of commercial games :-(

I'd also pay for a decent maths package, but seeing as Maple and
Matlab are available for Linux, I'm fully covered here.

I'm also interested in CAD packages. Fortunately Microstation 95
provides everything I need!

Graphics packages are useful though CorelDRAW and PhotoPaint are
already available for Linux, so that area is covered also.

Not so interested in word processors and spreadsheets anymore. I
think Linux has too many of the damn things now!

I dunno, Marc. I think you might have missed your opportunity as
I'm fully stocked up on apps now, and have no more wants.

Unless you write games, of course :-)

--
The sticker on the side of the box said "Supported Platforms: Windows 95,
Windows NT 4.0, or better", so clearly Linux was a supported platform.

 
 
 

Wish List - What are you willing to BUY?

Post by Mats Andtback » Thu, 11 Sep 1997 04:00:00



>>In order to jump start Linux into a world class OS (read - significant
>>slice on those pie charts showing who'se using which OS),

popularity does not equal quality.

i wouldn't much care if Linus and myself were the only two people
using Linux, _so long as it did what i needed done_. so long as it was
a good OS. oodles of people are using win95, and i can tell you from
experience it sucks arcturan megadonkey* *hard*.

Quote:>>we all know
>>that we need commercial apps that Joe Q Public will be willing to buy.

there _is_ a sensible, useful division of the computer market into
"desktop" and "server"; i would suggest Linux, like most Unices, leans
towards the latter. try writing a better database - best of luck.

(anyone thinking there aren't applications for Linux? check the Linux
Journal '97 Buyer's Guide issue; look under the heading "databases".
desktop users - when did _you_ last touch an RDBMS? i rest my case.)

Quote:>>writing for Linux.  As a commercial developer, I know that a fragile
>>OS reflects on my products, but switching to a heavy-duty OS with no
>>market-share is often suicidal in this business.  (I know three Apple
>>developers off-hand looking for work).

you mentioned Apple and heavy-duty OS in adjacent sentences. i take it
you refer to A/UX, their discontinued SVR3 clone.
--
        "Yes i'm lonely..."
                _Yer Blues_, Lennon / McCartney
 
 
 

Wish List - What are you willing to BUY?

Post by Christopher Brow » Thu, 11 Sep 1997 04:00:00





>>>we all know
>>>that we need commercial apps that Joe Q Public will be willing to buy.

>there _is_ a sensible, useful division of the computer market into
>"desktop" and "server"; i would suggest Linux, like most Unices, leans
>towards the latter. try writing a better database - best of luck.

>(anyone thinking there aren't applications for Linux? check the Linux
>Journal '97 Buyer's Guide issue; look under the heading "databases".
>desktop users - when did _you_ last touch an RDBMS? i rest my case.)

And their listing of relational databases is woefully inadequate; if
memory serves, they listed about 5-6 packages, whereas there are
presently over 20, of which the majority are commercial software.
---
--

take you today?  A: Confutatis maledictis, flammis acribus *is...


 
 
 

Wish List - What are you willing to BUY?

Post by Christopher Brow » Thu, 11 Sep 1997 04:00:00


On Wed, 10 Sep 1997 22:27:40 GMT,

Quote:>No!  As for me, I didn't see your post initially.
>1- A decent Borland C++ Developer/Delphi type environment (In fact, on
>   the 15th of this month, Borland will open up the JBuilder
>   discussion lists on their web server and the product manager
>   indicated that there was an R&D effort to produce an all-Java
>   version of JBuilder- but that it wasn't plans.  She further
>   indicated that they might make it plans if enough people asked
>   for it.)

Them's fightin' words!

Under UNIX-like systems, development environments *are* something that
tend to be highly personalized, so there probably won't be too much
agreement on this one.

Quote:>2- Imaging apps.  The toolset for making world-class computer
>   graphics is painfully small.  Yes, there's GIMP, but there are
>   other aspects of that sort of thing that GIMP's not going to
>   fill in- not to mention that while there's several AWESOME
>   free and shareware 3D renderers, there's no real winner in the
>   animation building or model generation arena- the free offerings
>   are lacking or a year or more away from being what is needed.

Combine this with WYSIWYG DTP, and you're pretty bang-on.

Something like "Print Shop", providing templates to build a whole
bunch of *highly* graphical documents would be a "hit."

Quote:>4- Cleaner Internet apps.  Netscape's there, but it'd be nice to have
>   alternative options there.  News is often painful to read from a
>   news server- the tools for reading are just NOW coming up to par
>   with the best that Windows has to offer.  E-mail's decent, but
>   some better commercial options couldn't hurt.

I'll agree only on the Netscape side of this.

There's functionality in the average UNIX-based newsreader that I've
not yet seen in anything Windoze-based.

And I've used all the major Windoze-based mail apps, and they can't
hold a candle to Elm or MH...
---
--

take you today?  A: Confutatis maledictis, flammis acribus *is...


 
 
 

Wish List - What are you willing to BUY?

Post by Frank C. Ea » Thu, 11 Sep 1997 04:00:00




Quote:>Since I have received no responses, I must assume that there are no
>products that Linux users would be wiiling to pay for.  So we
>commercial programmers will have to follow the herd to M$ (much as I
>regret that).  Am I wrong here?

No!  As for me, I didn't see your post initially.

1- A decent Borland C++ Developer/Delphi type environment (In fact, on
   the 15th of this month, Borland will open up the JBuilder
   discussion lists on their web server and the product manager
   indicated that there was an R&D effort to produce an all-Java
   version of JBuilder- but that it wasn't plans.  She further
   indicated that they might make it plans if enough people asked
   for it.)

2- Imaging apps.  The toolset for making world-class computer
   graphics is painfully small.  Yes, there's GIMP, but there are
   other aspects of that sort of thing that GIMP's not going to
   fill in- not to mention that while there's several AWESOME
   free and shareware 3D renderers, there's no real winner in the
   animation building or model generation arena- the free offerings
   are lacking or a year or more away from being what is needed.

3- We have several nice office suites and Wordperfect.  Office suites
   are all well and good, but what if you just want a good wordproc?
   We need more wordprocs (Though, I'll be buying Wordperfect, unless
   someone comes up with something better.).  We need world-class,
   easier to use DTP tools.  

4- Cleaner Internet apps.  Netscape's there, but it'd be nice to have
   alternative options there.  News is often painful to read from a
   news server- the tools for reading are just NOW coming up to par
   with the best that Windows has to offer.  E-mail's decent, but
   some better commercial options couldn't hurt.

5- Lastly, but perhaps the most important of all, GAMES.  Without
   games, Joe User's not going to want to use the OS- all the games
   he wants to run are under Win95/NT right at the moment, save the
   notable exceptions of Abuse, Doom, and Quake.  No Diablo.  No
   Descent.  No Star Fleet Acadamy.  No Myst.  No Riven.  Make games
   and the market will notice when Joe User can run in less machine
   with Linux than with 95/NT.

--
Frank C. Earl
Earl Consulting Services
---------------------------------------------------------------------------
Pursuant to USC 47, there is a $500 per incident charge for each and
every piece of Unsolicited Commercial Email (UCE) sent to this or any
of my other addresses.  Sending UCE's to any of my addresses implys
general acceptance of these terms.  (My Return addresses are _deliberately_
broken to interfere with mailing list generators- remove "-no-spam-" every
place in the address to reply.)

 
 
 

Wish List - What are you willing to BUY?

Post by Georg Bass » Thu, 11 Sep 1997 04:00:00



> >WYSIWYG Word Processing
> >Spreadsheets
> >Communication (email/fax/ppp)

I use Appliware for this- it's really good !

Quote:> >Database (user and programmer sides)

ADABAS D ? For personal purposes there is msql...nice for web applications.

Quote:> >Web browsing

I would pay $100 for a pure WWW browser which knows HTML standard _and_ Netscape / MS
extensions, is stable and small- why do I need tons of RAM to browse HTML (Netscape)
?

Quote:> >Specialized programs (statistical, CAD, graphical, etc)

????

Quote:> >Games

? I have a really good adventure game I play since 1994. There are updates and new
levels almost every week. It's name ? Linux ! You really don't need everything else
to be amused. `|:-)

But you're right- we need more alternatives for all the categories. More Office
packages, tools and so on. There is nothing like a free Office Project now- why ???
Does anybody know ??

Bye- Georg

 
 
 

Wish List - What are you willing to BUY?

Post by Chris Lawrence (Cont » Thu, 11 Sep 1997 04:00:00



: Since I have received no responses, I must assume that there are no
: products that Linux users would be wiiling to pay for.  So we
: commercial programmers will have to follow the herd to M$ (much as I
: regret that).  Am I wrong here?

There are obvious metrics to suggest you are wrong:

  Sales figures for Applix.

  Sales figures for Caldera's packaging with various commercial products
    ala Netscape Server, WordPerfect, etc.

  TriTeal's CDE.

  Sales figures for whatever that German MS Office clone is (forget name).

  Various commercial X servers for Linux (MetroX etc).

I'd also note that the very existance of these products would seem to
indicate that a market exists.

--


...Honorary Member Clan McFUD -- Teamer's Avenging Monolith...

 
 
 

Wish List - What are you willing to BUY?

Post by Lance Levse » Thu, 11 Sep 1997 04:00:00




> Since I have received no responses, I must assume that there are no
> products that Linux users would be wiiling to pay for.  So we
> commercial programmers will have to follow the herd to M$ (much as I
> regret that).  Am I wrong here?

Yeah, how about QuarkExpress. Or similar. I don't mean Lyx, or
Corel(ick)Draw.

        I mean a compact, able to interface with an OPI,
output to a RIP, carry multiple printer driver, page layout program
that supports _output_ of multiple graphic formats (EPS, JPEG,
TIFF, low res. PICT). Must understand trapping and able to work with imposition
software, (outputting in Postscript by either full document, or single
page). Must understand film, screens, colour angles (CMYK) must have a
gammut control on RGB. Must carry full Pantone (tm) colour Library,
and have CMYK equivalents. Must have a simple X-interface,
keyboard/mouse commands of all major options. Must be fully optimized
for users, not techs. Must be able to import text, or tables from m$
stuff/WordPerfect. Must understand kerning, hyphenation, leading,
point size, fonts must be in english, not alpha-numeric garbage.

        Must have ability to load fonts on the fly. (Hmm, seems like
an X problem)

        Must _Not_ have any graphical editing options other then
simple lines, and circles, import those.

        Any questions?

-Lance

--
-----
If I had a neat and nifty saying, it would go here.

 
 
 

Wish List - What are you willing to BUY?

Post by Hugh McCur » Sat, 13 Sep 1997 04:00:00





>>In order to jump start Linux into a world class OS (read - significant
>>slice on those pie charts showing who'se using which OS), we all know
>>that we need commercial apps that Joe Q Public will be willing to buy.
>>(This is why MS is big and OS/2 and System 7 and etc... are small).
>>This means we need to have commercial developers out there porting and
>>writing for Linux.  As a commercial developer, I know that a fragile
>>OS reflects on my products, but switching to a heavy-duty OS with no
>>market-share is often suicidal in this business.  (I know three Apple
>>developers off-hand looking for work).

>>So, that being said, what do you folks think we weekly-pay-check types
>>need to develop?  What could we provide for $$ that is lacking in the
>>curent Linux App market?  In your replies, include a good description
>>and a good idea of the market share and what would a good price be for
>>the product.  Avoid any product ideas that are already covered by
>>freeware unless an "new and improved" product will make it.

>>I know there are a lot of commercial developers that lurk these
>>groups, so you will be talking to that audience.  The more ideas you
>>provide, the more likely these products will get built.

Not exactly on the subject, close.

I read in c.o.l.announce that SCO offers an emulator that allows Linux
ELF and a.out programs to run on their Open Server and Unixware products.

This would appear to be an effort by SCO to encourage Linux programmers
to write commercial software which could then run on SCO boxes without having
to port the software, etc.

So, if you are worried about market size, perhaps it's larger than you think.

--
Hugh McCurdy