mx odbc

Kim Petersen kp at
Thu Jul 10 14:33:01 CEST 2003

Alan Kennedy wrote:
> Kim Petersen wrote:
>>I have no idea about the support (obviously) - but then i hardly ever
>>buy/use support for development tools [especially not open-source ones].
> Well, that just about says it all for the theory that "open source
> developers should make their money from services".
> What many people seem to forget is that maintaining high quality
> software *is* a service: in the case of mxODBC, a very high quality
> service. If M-A-L didn't charge licensing fees, then he'd be providing
> a high quality service, i.e. well designed, maintained and up-to-date
> software, without any income at all, since, in general, developers
> don't buy support for development tools, unless they absolutely must.

It *is* a service - i agree completely and even if i don't use the 
support i'll prolly patch the problem and send the result upstream - 
that really isn't an argument to use in the below. The reason for that 
statement was simply that in opensource situations, we'll _maybe_ locate 
the bug ourselves (or patch the product to do what we want - which 
*cannot* be done in closed-source) and i'm not talking beer!

> Kim Petersen wrote:
>>[snip] paying 70$ pr.
>>customer, is the equivalent of paying you for 1hr of support for each
>>customer [not installation mind you], where our own licence/supportcost
>>is already getting lower and lower
> It's a free market: pick another (cheaper) ODBC driver and use that
> instead. Just make sure that your customers understand that they will
> get a poorer quality product from you because they're paying you less
> money, so you have to use lower quality components in your software:
> I wonder how long they'll be your customers.

Regarding the free marked - i agree - against the other - what is it 
*exactly* that makes mxODBC a better quality product - noone has seemed 
to be able to tell (and yes - you do in the above claim that...). So i 
can't even tell my customers that [even if i believed that your argument 
of telling customers about developing methods have any substance for 
them *at all* (its the product that counts - not the methods)].

> Kim Petersen wrote:
>>We work in teams - so that would be 1250*4 making the below calculation
>>18*4 (and we're not able to pull in freelancers on this kinda stuff then
>>- other than paying another 1250). 
> And how much would you pay these freelancers? Probably quite a
> substantial amount over the weeks or months that you retain them,
> and probably *far* in excess of the developer license cost for mxODBC.
> How much improved productivity will you get from those developers
> because they're not spending a week chasing weird bugs in the
> database/ODBC code?

essence of my argument - the pricing of this *little* (but essential) 
component drives the pricing of the end-product up a substantial amount 
- that imho is not corresponding to the usefulnes of the product. [and 
to use your argument from before - i need to find another product then].

> I feel quite annoyed when people give out about having to pay money
> for software: someone, somewhere has to write that software: that
> someone has to pay the rent, the utility bills, etc, etc, etc, etc.
> Demanding that everyone work for nothing is completely unreasonable:
> just because you're too stingy to pay for what you get. Some OSS
> developers are fortunate enough that they don't have to charge money
> for their software, because the government, or the education system,
> or some charitable foundation, pays their wages. But that's not true
> for all OSS developers.

We already pay substantial amounts for software - including donations 
for opensource projects - so your tirade falls on a wrong spot. [In our 
endsystems i estimate around 60% goes to hardware 30% goes to royalties 
etc. (as we implement in OSS software a large amount of this returns - 
not as much as i would wish - but then thats something for my boss to 

> To those who continue to complain about having to pay for software,
> I say: If you don't like paying, fork the software, maintain your
> own product and let it be free (both in the free-speech and the
> free-beer senses): see how you long *you* last.

Can you mention even on spot where i complained against paying for 
software ? (hint: the amount - not that it has a price).

> not-biting-the-hand-that-feeds-ly yrs.

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