Why isn't Rev more popular?

Richard Gaskin ambassador at fourthworld.com
Tue Dec 6 17:01:20 EST 2005

Hershel Fisch wrote:
> On 12/5/05 10:20 PM, "Richard Gaskin" <ambassador at fourthworld.com> wrote:
>>"Business" is pretty broad, and no doubt one could defined it in ways
>>that might make Rev look insufficient.
> E.g. A heavy distribution wholesaler, accounting package, a big retailer

The medical software I've been building is being distributed by the one 
of largest publishers of professional medical media.   The qualitative 
analysis package I've made has been carried by the world leader in 
qualitative publishing.

But accounting?  That's not a technical challenge as much as it is a 
marketing one, for all the reasons outlined in Moore's "Crossing the 
Chasm" and "Inside the Tornado".  In short, QuickBooks has some 80% of 
the market, with MYOB and Microsoft Money taking up most of the rest. 
Any remaining potential for a profitable new entry is in specialized 
sub-markets, and we have one member of this list who's done just that, 
making a business accounting package specifically for the rental industry.

That may be why you don't see leading accounting packages (or word 
processors or HTML authoring tools or photo enhancement tools or the 
other major categories) done in Rev or BASIC or even Python for that 
matter, no matter how capable these languages are:

The "sweet spot" for development tools at this level is in vertical markets.

While it's possible for something like Dreamweaver to be made in Rev 
with externals used for computationally-intensive portions (esp. if they 
used the embedded engine option which exposes deeper APIs), the bigger 
hurdle is internal politics (and the multi-million-dollar frameworks 
these companies use internally). I've done enough work with Fortune 500 
companies to understand that there are many drivers beyond ROI for their 
tool choices.

And it pretty much takes a Fortune 500 company to compete in today's 
software market for the major application categories.

But then there's everything else, the thousands of vertical-market 
categories we address today, and the million others waiting to be 

That's where tools like Rev and RealBASIC get used.

As an aside, it's worth noting that for many years a number of helper 
apps that shipped with Quicken were written in SuperCard; might still be 
true for all I know, haven't used Quicken in some time.  Like those of 
us here who make a living from developing with Rev, Intuit recognized 
the ROI benefits of using an xTalk, and exploited that well.

Maybe one day the engineering team at AOL will realize they're wasting 
about 85% of their development budget by not using Rev.  The AOL client 
is a natural fit for Rev, but good luck even scheduling that meeting.

>>But evidently it can be defined in other ways as well, since many
>>business make, sell, and buy Rev-based apps, and report a high degree of
>>satisfaction and a strong ROI at all levels of that chain.
>>I'm sure you've seen Rev's Case Studies page:
>>True, RunRev's done a crappy job of cataloging all of the professional
>>apps out there, but even as a small cross-section there's some
>>interesting stuff there.
> For sure it bring some recognition.

Imagine how much more it would bring if it were anywhere close to 
complete.  There's a *lot* of Rev-based apps out there....

  Richard Gaskin
  Managing Editor, revJournal
  Rev tips, tutorials and more: http://www.revJournal.com

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