Why isn't Rev more popular?

Brian Yennie briany at qldlearning.com
Tue Dec 6 00:30:20 EST 2005


> 	Yes, I have been lurking here for months reading the messages on a
> daily basis. Some of the problems I've encountered in my 
> experimentation
> with Revolution have indeed been answered here without a need on my 
> part to
> ask a question. Yes, I purchased Revolution with a specific purpose in 
> mind
> and, yes, you are correct in deducing that Revolution - despite 
> advertising
> claims - turned out to be ill-suited for that purpose.

Can you share what specifically Revolution advertises but does not 
deliver on for you?
I am genuinely curious. Is it printing and table objects you are 
looking for? I honestly think you might look more closely at the print 
dialog problem, as Richard's email alludes to. As for the table object, 
I'm with you. And I'm a Rev supporter if there ever was one- I BOUGHT 
my first computer because I wanted Hypercard. But the scripted table 
objects RunRev has tried to pass off have been a sore spot when we 
really need a true OS-implemented widget. With that said, similar gaps 
have been filled before - see altBrowser from Altuit for example.

> My most serious complaint about Revolution is the documentation. In
> my opinion, it is deplorable and the Shafer book is a bad joke. As a 
> matter
> of preference and I think commonsense, I prefer products that are
> well-documented. I simply don't have the time to waste in dealing with
> products that require a prodigious amount of time to simply learn 
> whether
> it's a failure of technique or the product at the base of the problem. 
> A
> review of this list demonstrates that such time-wasting discussions 
> are part
> and parcel of the Revolution experience.

You might have a point here- as you aren't the first person to complain 
about the documentation (personally it works fine for me, but there are 
definitely legitimate complaints especially for new users). With that 
said, if you don't want to get flamed, try not calling someone else's 
work a "bad joke". Worse yet, post to a list and call it's discussions 
a time waste. New users regularly swear up and down that this is the 
best user list they've ever belonged to. You don't have to agree, but 
it is actually a common occurrence to hear that.

> 	Anyone reading this list or using Revolution knows the product has
> many bugs or, as I'm sure some of the zealots here would claim,
> "undocumented features."

Nobody here is calling bugs undocumented features, you're just throwing 

> 	I've been in the technology industry since the mid-1960s and have
> seen many products attract a zealous following who vociferously 
> attacked any
> critic of their love. Many of these failed products still have their
> adherents years after the product failed its most critical test: 
> acceptance
> in the marketplace. Yes, I know: the zealots will immediately trot out 
> their
> arguments that Beta truly was superior to VHS;that the Commodore OS 
> was the
> best of them; that the Newton still remains unmatched. The 
> counter-argument
> is that the market says otherwise. The zealots are quick to inform you 
> that
> the marketplace is wrong, just as anyone who voted for candidate X or 
> owns
> product Z is "dumb."

True enough. But that doesn't prove the converse. Just because RunRev 
has "zealots" doesn't mean there is something wrong. Let's discuss it's 
merits if we can, instead of going here. And you might read some of the 
recent posts by these same zealots who are still trying to steer you 
into a productive thread.

> 	Unremarkably, those who have been the quickest to flame me appear to
> be those with pecuniary interest of one sort or another in Revolution,
> whether as investors, developers of Revolution based tools or vendors 
> of
> third-party products and services. Obviously such people are 
> immediately
> threatened by any criticism of the source of some part of their cash 
> flow.

No, they're insulted when you call them zealots, when you call their 
products "trivial", and when you dismiss RunRev as acceptable for a 
category of applications from which they make good living and feed 
their families. You have not been constructively critical and it does 
not excuse flaming you back. But they weren't threatened, they were 
insulted. These are successful people who don't need anyone to validate 
their use or RunRev, why would they be threatened by you?

> 	It is noteworthy that there are so many references to applications
> developed with Revolution that are inaccessible to others. I question 
> the
> wisdom of a client who would buy an application built with a tool that 
> has a
> small following, requires special knowledge to use and may not exist 
> within
> the near future. The bottom line is that apparently virtually no 
> broadly
> marketed applications have been developed with Revolution.
> 	If the tool is as good as its enthusiasts claim, why is that?

Because the enthusiasts never claimed it was the tool for every job. 
It's also worth noting that major, mainstream applications are not 
usually written in high-level RAD tools. Word, Photoshop, Quickbooks, 
browsers, email clients... these aren't exactly Visual Basic apps, 

> 	As I said earlier, criticism of Revolution is not welcome on this
> list. Certain people, unlike you Sarah, can't deal with any criticism
> civily, as Chipp Walters, from whom I've purchased a product, has
> demonstrated both in his public posting here and in a private e-mail 
> to me.
> This kind of resistance, I've found, is usually a good indicator of an
> insularity which often leads to the failure of a product.

Yes it is. We're encouraging you repeatedly to actually discuss your 
criticisms in detail so we can either help you with your problems or at 
least identify them for the better of the community.

> 	I've asked the folks at RunTime to honor their promise of a refund.
> The zealots here have convinced me that this yet another product that
> started off with promise but will fail of the critical test of 
> marketplace
> acceptance.

I'm sure they will honor their refund if you meet the criteria. Let's 
not imply otherwise.
And by the way, did you actually do a proper evaluation of the product, 
including the 30 day trial before you bought it? Or did you just dive 
right in and then later realize you picked the wrong tool for your 
project? I love Rev myself, but there is no single language or tool 
that I use for even 50% of my work.

> 	And with that, all the true believers may continue with their
> flaming --- never being mindful of how their insubstantial ad hominem
> strikes those who may wander to this list looking for justification to
> purchase Revolution. Zealots never seem to understand how they hurt 
> their
> own cause.

Maybe more restraint would have helped... but frankly you came charging 
in with insults, and I can't imagine you would be received any 
differently on any user list anywhere with the way you presented 

- Brian

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