Revolution and the Web, feedback wanted, Part 1 of 3

Mikey mikeythek at gmail.com
Wed Nov 29 08:10:44 CST 2006


> Actually, if you read the terms - it's free until your startup makes
> money. Then you owe them licensing fees retroactively. So they're
> offering deferred payment to startups, which is cool I guess - but
> it's definitely misleading that they call it free. Intriguing, but
> would you stake your startup company on thousands of dollars of
> deferred licensing fees of a 1.0 product? Scary.

It's not really "retroactive".  You owe the seat fee, as of the date
when you start making money, subject to whatever actual deal you work
out with them.  They do state that they will work these terms out on a
case by case basis with each startup.  And yes, I would agree to this,
because I have zero risk in trying it out.  On top of that I can just
take the Express version for FREE until I'm confident that it's going
to work for me, then go Pro.

Worrying about the 1.0 version is a little odd when discussing a
business decision broadly.  First of all, the startup that is looking
at this deal isn't even at .1 yet.  Second, the price isn't $5,000.
The 1.0 price is $1,748 until February or so, if I remember the dates
correctly.  Thirdly, what would you say if they took $7,000 in stock
options per seat instead of cash when you start generating revenue?
Would it be a good deal then?  Finally, arguing that any pricing or
any product is a worry because it is 1.0 does not make the product or
the pricing a problem in even the medium term.  If this was the deal
and the product was 1.5 (which one would expect it will be sometime
next year), would you still think it's a problem?

> I agree it's interesting. Keep in mind they "include" the database
> and web servers because they're just bundling free software (Firebird
> and Apache). Any tool that generates web apps could bundle those two
> if desired. Pricing out deployments versus developer licenses can
> often be 6 of one and a half dozen of another - really it depends on
> your business. Some love to be able to just pay for the developer
> seats and be done with it. Others would rather save money until they
> are ready to bill a client - and then just pass on the cost.
> Personally I *do* like the former the majority of the time.

Yes, they are bundling in software that doesn't cost them anything
(which means no license fee for SQL Server or Oracle).  The thing that
interests me, though is that they are hiding these components from me,
and they are making it easy to detach them (if you decide to go Pro).
I don't have to know how to configure Firebird or Apache, or write a
bunch of Perl or PHP.  I design my application the way I would if I
were using any other RAD IDE, and when I compile it, Firebird and
Apache are built in.

> > 2) On AJAX/FJAX:  If you've used Gmail or Google Maps you will
> > immediately recognize that there is a significant difference between
> > AJAX apps and your run-of-the-mill web apps.  Speed.  Smoothness.
> > Shortcuts. You can't get the same feel from straight XHTML.

> XML has nothing to do per se with the speed of AJAX apps. You can
> very well make asynchronous calls for data without transmitting it in
> XML format, and get all of the same benefits. Depending on the app,
> XML may in fact be a good format to choose - but it's definitely not
> the source of increased speed. Your asynchronous request could return
> XML, XHTML, HTML, plain text or my personal fave - JSON (Javascript
> Object Notation) objects. Or anything else your client-side code can
> handle. If you really want to open a can of works, try sending back
> some Javascript to execute - voila, self-modifying web app (ack)!

Yes, you can do this in a variety of ways.  I have not seen any
implementations that _efficiently_ use bandwidth that use anything
OTHER THAN XML to embed the data.  If you can do it, great.  Maybe
we'll get some of the frameworks tweaked to make life less
<taghappy/>.

-- 
On the first day, God created the heavens and the Earth
On the second day, God created the oceans.
On the third day, God put the animals on hold for a few hours,
   and did a little diving.
And God said, "This is good."



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