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Posted Monday, August 19, 2013 8:20 AM


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phickey (8/19/2013)
Unfortunately, some companies respond only when the community uproar is so strong they fear its effect on their reputation and sales. Insults (childish or otherwise) are not an essential part of the uproar. They are a normal response to the frustration caused by bad software, but normal is not best, and often counterproductive.

Pressure can be brought to bear without resorting to insults. Marshalling the evidence of the unreasonableness of the situation and the badness of the software - forcefully and often - may be unpleasant for the hearers, but it needn't be nasty.

People in general should be treated respectfully, just because they're people. When we are pleasantly surprised by respectful treatment from people we expected to be abusive, we feel motivated to help. When we receive abuse, we feel motivated to stop listening and to refuse help.


+1







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Post #1485835
Posted Monday, August 19, 2013 8:23 AM


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Mark Harr (8/19/2013)
...Yet when we are users of software products, and it does not do what we expect, or we cannot extend a feature to do something similar but for our use, some of us think the product is broken. Some of us cannot empathize with the developers of that product, recognize they had design decisions and tradeoffs, and probably did the best that they could (even if it would not be what you would do in same or similar situation).
...

This is one reason I am careful with reviews, and wouldn't look to completely say a product is great or horrible. The use case I have, may not fit others, and may not be what the tool is designed for.


I believe Steve's point was to have some empathy for the other side when you use a tool or package or website or mobile app. The other side of the server has real people, just like you (and probably griping about your product).


Yep. We often complain in a way we wouldn't want our users complaining to us. And we wouldn't respond to those complaints.







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Post #1485840
Posted Monday, August 19, 2013 8:42 AM


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Steve Jones - SSC Editor (8/19/2013)
And another view, somehow timed to come out with mine: http://blogs.lessthandot.com/index.php/ITProfessionals/ProfessionalDevelopment/microsoft-isn-t-the-devil

When it comes to complaints leveled against Microsoft from the general development community about software quality or even privacy, I do find it to be "thin gruel". There arn't any major bugs or missing features in SQL Server that I can recall (not in 2012 nor 2008), that have caused me downtime or reason to consider switching to another database platform.

However, if I had to mention at least something, I would say that I am perturbed that ColumnStore indexes are not updatable in SQL Server 2012 Enterprise Edition. So after creating the ColumnStore index, we have to either drop or disable it before inserting / updating the table, and then re-create again. It's not a show stopper, I'm just sticking with covered indexes and included columns for now until the missing functionality is provided in v2014.
Post #1485852
Posted Monday, August 19, 2013 8:43 AM
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You covered a good topic, and nailed it.

I have seen that vendors typically are more worried about what new features they can market than fixing existing bugs. Marketing drives sales, sales drives profits, why should they worry about bugs that only affect existing, paying customers?

Arguably I work with vendors other than Microsoft, and none of them have the scale of implementations that they do. I think that makes it worse. At least Microsoft has to fight the media coverage. Smaller vendors frequently can ignore or counter negative media coverage more easily.

Some of the best vendors I deal with offer customer portals where you can report bugs, and even vote on "enhancements". Rarely can you vote on bug fixes though.

I believe our system (Capitalist) is the best one going, but I also see many instances where short term profits trump good long term business sense. I don't have an answer to fix that, but I do wish that sales and marketing were restrained somewhat in the influence they wield.


Dave
Post #1485853
Posted Monday, August 19, 2013 8:49 AM
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Eric M Russell (8/19/2013)
It must be daunting for a software vendor like Oracle to


Not a fan of Oracle right now. I understand that they no longer develop Java, instead relying on open source programmers. Unfortunately the quality of Java is as bad as it has ever been. Sun, and now Oracle, took a good idea and butchered it in an attempt to displace Microsoft influence on developers. Almost every vendor I work with is dumping Java as quick as they can, having found that they can't provide a working product due to how Oracle is pushing out upgrades that break existing functionality.

My favorite sayng currently is that someone needs to beat the Java developers upside the head with a coffee cup until they figure out how to provide a decent product.


Dave
Post #1485855
Posted Monday, August 19, 2013 8:59 AM


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djackson 22568 (8/19/2013)
Eric M Russell (8/19/2013)
It must be daunting for a software vendor like Oracle to


Not a fan of Oracle right now. I understand that they no longer develop Java, instead relying on open source programmers. Unfortunately the quality of Java is as bad as it has ever been. Sun, and now Oracle, took a good idea and butchered it in an attempt to displace Microsoft influence on developers. Almost every vendor I work with is dumping Java as quick as they can, having found that they can't provide a working product due to how Oracle is pushing out upgrades that break existing functionality.

My favorite sayng currently is that someone needs to beat the Java developers upside the head with a coffee cup until they figure out how to provide a decent product.

Yeah, in my previous post I was about to contrast Java with Microsoft .NET in terms of stability and bug / security fixes, etc. Of course at this point HTML5 is looking like it may become the dominant software app platform, but .NET rules at least when it comes to desktop apps running on Windows.
Post #1485863
Posted Monday, August 19, 2013 9:25 AM
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Eric M Russell (8/19/2013)
djackson 22568 (8/19/2013)
Eric M Russell (8/19/2013)
It must be daunting for a software vendor like Oracle to


Not a fan of Oracle right now. I understand that they no longer develop Java, instead relying on open source programmers. Unfortunately the quality of Java is as bad as it has ever been. Sun, and now Oracle, took a good idea and butchered it in an attempt to displace Microsoft influence on developers. Almost every vendor I work with is dumping Java as quick as they can, having found that they can't provide a working product due to how Oracle is pushing out upgrades that break existing functionality.

My favorite sayng currently is that someone needs to beat the Java developers upside the head with a coffee cup until they figure out how to provide a decent product.

Yeah, in my previous post I was about to contrast Java with Microsoft .NET in terms of stability and bug / security fixes, etc. Of course at this point HTML5 is looking like it may become the dominant software app platform, but .NET rules at least when it comes to desktop apps running on Windows.


Our help desk reinstalls Java multiple times a day. Every time I walk by during an install, if the "3 billion devices run Java" screen is up, you can hear them muttering "yeah, and 3 billion devices no longer work!"


Dave
Post #1485868
Posted Monday, August 19, 2013 11:24 AM
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In one of my favorite Dilbert cartoons, Dogbert says to the boss: 'Before you bought my overpriced, under-performing software, you had all of the power. Now, it's the opposite'. The boss replies: 'How big a fool do you think I am?'. Dogbert says: 'I'll tell you after you sign the platinum support agreement'.

No need to say any more. As mentioned above, Microsoft is head and shoulders above many smaller vendors, especially those with niche products.
Post #1485917
Posted Tuesday, August 20, 2013 4:09 AM


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Of course, some users don't help themselves or the rest of us. There are always a small minority who will claim that the issue they are raising is the most important ever even if it is a minor issue to them. This is akin to sending every email with high importance flagged. With emails you begin to ignore the importance flag on emails from someone who always sets them but with product feedback it isn't so obvious and can skew the perceived userbase requirements.

Gaz

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Post #1486167
Posted Tuesday, August 20, 2013 7:18 AM


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Gary Varga (8/20/2013)
Of course, some users don't help themselves or the rest of us. There are always a small minority who will claim that the issue they are raising is the most important ever even if it is a minor issue to them. This is akin to sending every email with high importance flagged. With emails you begin to ignore the importance flag on emails from someone who always sets them but with product feedback it isn't so obvious and can skew the perceived userbase requirements.

I believe that's one benefit of having users vote with dollars; those users who contribute the most financial support to the project, whether via PayPal for shareware or a premium support contract for ISV product, are most likely the users with largest stake in how the software functions. Of course, a large corporate client will want all the obvious bugs fixed just as much as anyone.
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