If you didn't get CintaNotes "Pro" for free last time, today's the day again, and Zoom Player Max is available on Sharewareonsale for free, too, see my added remarks above with respect to both; CintaNotes is following quite bad examples as I see it. Further added details also in the "Pricing" thread - I didn't held up the distinction between pricing, trial conception and other marketing considerations (incl. giveaways) as strong as at the beginning lately - and database beginners* or users interested in how programs like CintaNotes work behind the scenes should refer again to the "SQL" thread again; it'll become of interest if google will better cover that last one one day (down to the middle of next page currently, so that's probably not that appealing for google); while my Trials and Pricing threads are about remote subjects, admittedly, the SQL thread is as unique and of practical relevance for quite some people: Reading's quite demanding since it's written in the form of a journal, but compare with endless hours of unsuccessfully tryings things out when without the info being hidden there.
*: No, I'll put that over there, let's see if that helps a little bit for google.
EDIT (same day): Meta
In order to make my additions easier to find, I won't add to previous posts anymore but just to my most recent one; this is also true for posts in other threads; at the same time, nuisance to people not wishing to be bothered by my posts will continue to be minimized, by rarefication of said posts-to-be-notified to them.
EDIT (same day): TheBrain
I had spoken of TheBrain above, also with respect to my impression that it's not so much apt for big data repositories in its current form, and in the Pricing thread, about its quite clever pricing/positioning. Today, I've got finds for both aspects: According to http://forums.thebra...cyber-monday-8325459
, on Cyber Monday, 2016, they did a 10 p.c. discount, and still, they said, "We have had many users taking advantage of the sale today. We hope you can too, but if it's still not in your budget please use the free edition as long as you want." - If that's true, it would be in line of what I've said above on their pricing strategy; in the context of what I've said above and especially over there, it could very well be that full-price customers, especially those which don't use the program on a daily basis, because of its inherent problems (see the next paragraph), could lose some of their "select" feel and develop buyer's remorse if TB followed the advice of that thread's starter, Moltaire, "10%? What kind of a discount is that? One major barrier to adoption is the high license and subscription price, especially that whopper of a first year. That prevents many people from ever becoming paid users. If you had offered the first year for $159 and the pro license for $110, you would have recouped the losses of the lower prices with tons of new users. Or is my economics off? Curious to hear what other people think." - of course, other TB users held back their opinion, just TB responded.
And this http://forums.thebra...ith-thebrain-8413647
will be of interest for anybody interested in data visualization or just in data organization in general; this is not to be discussed by me here since it hasn't got anything to do with pricing/trial conception/marketing, just this: In some authors' writings in that thread, there is some undertone implying that users not intimate with TB may be overwhelmed by large TB "plexes", and that this was so partly because they simply aren't on par with TB - sort of "how to make its strength presentable to the masses"; but other authors identify the problem more correctly, as a more general one, and they even get so some intermediate solutions: mctrexler, "over the last year I've integrated a comprehensive Index into my Climate Web megabrain, and the Index alone is now up to >1000 entries" - of course, such meta-navigational tools are needed for any user, not just for not-smart-and-or-initiated-enough new users, and they should not be made by hand but programmatically, and then, in a further step, should be created and maintained by the program itself, so this thread clearly indicates where TB should bring in its main development efforts. Or the same author in another post of his, "But with no ability to use one-way thoughts to structure what people see, or to use basic "report" abilities to allow users to structure what they want to see, or to be able to filter TheBrain content in any way, it's VERY difficult to overcome the problems of cognitive overload in anything but the simplest of Brains (and the simplest of Brains totally miss the whole point of Brains)." - it certainly is an intriguing, fascinating application, it just has quite some additional conceptional work to do, in order to become really useful, by adding and optimally integrating sort of supra-navigation.
EDIT June 16, 2017: SQLite Manager (SQLabs): the most appalling of them all
As said in the SQL(ite) thread, there's also SQLite Manager from SQLabs, as an SQLite frontend, and speaking of version 3.95 here. The trial comes with severe limitations which make it unusable for daily work, but, in theory, you can use it to get acquainted with the functionality; limitations are listed in the nag screen, which then invites you to "Register - Use Demo - Buy Online".
THEN, though, after some (10? 14?) days, you'll* get a dialog, "Database Encrypted - Database file SQLiteManager.exe seems to be encrypted. Please enter the encryption key: - Cancel - OK" (Cancel closes, OK (without your licence number or whatever) brings further dialogs to enter your license number).
Note that we're not speaking of some encrypted database files (ie .db files possibly encrypted by another frontend), as the dialog would seem to imply, but of an encryption of the executable, of the application file itself. So what we've got here is a "trial" that comes with almost-total functional crippling - which is clearly communicated - AND with a (quite short) time limit
** which is NOT communicated
- up to now, I did not encounter any worse trial design than this, short of course of destroying your system; SQLabs SQLiteManager trial just destroys itself without warning.
*: Well, I get this dialog, at least, and even after "Repairing" the application with a new (!) download of the .exe (which the installer permits, which is a good thing when it works).
**: Or then, it's so buggy that even their "repair" doesn't do anything about it, which would be as bad.
EDIT Night June 16/17, 2017: Bulk Image Downloader (BID)
Speaking of good laughs (see below), www.sadanduseless.com
is one of the best sites for dog and/or cat lovers (see the list of the 15 most popular threads, but also more than 150 pages available by the links at the bottom of the homepage); it's not for those only though, some current hit is http://www.sadanduse...com/2017/02/fashion/
BID is probably one of the best examples of simple but outstanding software, and one of the best examples how to do trials, etc. It had been mentioned here as being very good, but reasons hadn't been given, and I would also like to describe the trial.
I had tried half a dozen or so image downloader, free and paid, and none of them came even near the 25$-BID because the task is not about downloading almost anything several levels down (see for example Neo Downloader which I had been unable to do the simplest things but which brought me tons of rubbish, or other competitors which just find and download some of the pictures, and just in the quality present on the page while there is better quality just a link farther), but it's about to just download the pictures, but in the best possible quality, from the current page, and BID (only, it seems), does this highly effectively, from any sorts of web pages, for every picture there, even if that picture is much larger than a thumbnail, it checks if there is some link to a higher-quality picture, and then downloads that, all in bulk, as the name says.
The trial will not stop but lets you only choose up to 100 pictures to download from its pre-download (it identifies all the pictures, then loads thumbnails; on a slow pc, you'll just display a list of them, on a faster pc, you'll have those thumbs displayed, and then you can de-select the ones you don't want BID to download for good, into a dedicated folder for each bulk download if you want it that way; I have a slow pc, so I have it download just the whole list it will have created, and then I delete unwanted pictures afterwards, in FS picture viewer or elsewhere.
As implied above, the trial will download hundreds of thumbs, but as said, it then only downloads the first 100 pictures of the list which means that you even could use the trial for real "work"/fun since you could trigger the thumbs download as often as needed, for the same web page, and first have it just download the very first 100 pics, in the second run you delete the first 100 pics, in the third run you delete the first 200 pics, and so on - kids with no pocket money will probably do this for some time, and even the nagging screens which come up after 30 days stay more than bearable - nagging is done at program start, but not, as would be perfectly possible, before each download.
Why did I even encounter those screens? Well, most downloads are way UNDER 100 pics (see the humor web site in this example), so it seems that in everyday use, you will not even need the full version i.e. the license, in order to use this very fine program regularly. But then, after the nagging screens started, I asked myself, what was I doing there? Trying to avoid spending 25 bucks for just a brilliant program? (I say brilliant since it does so well what it promises to do, and that's so rare.) So I didn't buy within the trial period, but very shortly after, some 3 or 4 uses after, some 3 or 4 uses with (I said it, perfectly bearable) nagging screens.
So what do we learn here? This program is so pleasant, so likeable (the quality is there: big point!), that in principle, you're absolutely willing to pay (25$ is a perfect price for such a program: the developer gets real money, you get it for cheap, for all it does so smoothly) even if you do not really have to, BUT in my case, I needed 3 or 4 reminders in order to take action: Buying is an effort (the personal data, the buying screens, and all that), so even if it's cheap, nobody really likes to do it, but nagging screens remind you of the fact that you SHOULD do it, and after some of these, you DO do it.
Probably, the developer could rise the conversion rate by doing more nagging after some time, and/or by cutting down the number of possible downloads from 100 to lesser numbers (as implied, this would have a lesser effect since most such downloads are just 15-30 pictures in a row anyway), but it's also possible he does it this way in order to allow kids for real free use, the time they don't have the money to afford it, which for such a "fun"-related program would be even more likeable.
Official price is 30$, but whenever I look at the site, the "special offer, ending soon" of 25$ is present; in the really worst case and as described, you could "force" the trial up to the next special offer, in order to save 5 bucks if you must. It's a fine program, really functional, and its ability of downloading better-quality pics if linked (and which I found very reliable over a big bunch of different websites, even if probably that will not work for every site out there, some of them doing such links by scripting, ie by concatenating the links from several strings at different positions in the source code) makes it outstanding
And as said, its trial policy is original and worth a good look: This program hooks its prospects but then doesn't let them down when they hesitate; it remains available and stays with you, waiting for you to overcome your avarice/laziness; of course, such a policy is only possible within a price range where it's more laziness than avarice; in case such a program costs 100$, some people would probably need more than just 3-4 kind pads on their shoulder after the official trial period is over in order to take action.
EDIT June 20, 2017: Trials for Use-Once Tools: Demonstrate your (In-) Competence
A special situation in trial design arises for software which the buyer typically would use only once, and then perhaps again in another such situation when it arises months or even years later, but let's hope their need for that second or even third use will be for the same pc since such software typically is bound to the current hardware and can NOT be transferred to another pc, not even by "de-activating" it first on that machine for which you will have bought the license.
It's evident a time-limited but functional trial is not possible for such tools, so the developers typically implement a demo mode, for the prospect to know/"see" that the tool, when bought, will help them to solution the problem. In such cases, it can be utterly instructive to load and try half a dozen of even a full dozen of such tools of the same kind to compare since you will immediately see that most of them can't do anything/much for you, while other will solve the problem indeed; of course the developers of the latter tools will have done such comparisons, too, so they now that they compare very well with more or less useless "competitors", and so they take advantage of the comparison by pricing their, much better, tools, accordingly; on the other hand, even ineffective tools are often priced that way, in order to scam lazy* prospects who wrongly think that price invariably was in direct with effectiveness ("You get what you pay for"**).
*: It's not just about laziness in every use case. For example, if you need some de-deletion tool, oh, sorry, they are called data recovery tools, you will often have the problem that the tool is not pre-installed on the harddrive it now would be bound to work on, and not every user in that situation is able to get the harddisk out***, for it to be treated by and from another system, so this is a situation where users may be in panic and are bound to put even more errors on top of the already done ones.
**: "You get what you pay for" is mostly true, but in ONE direction only: For cheap, you will not get much in most cases - very rare, incredible useful tools like "Everything" being the exception to the general rule, not its invalidation. On the other hand, paying a lot of money for some sh** is NO guarantee at all to get help or any value for your money in general - hadn't it been Warhol in person who sold his own sh** in cans, for millions, in his time, in order to demonstrate this blatantly and irrefutably?
***: Those situations arise by incompetence of the user, either at the time of the damaging event or even months/years before. I'm not only speaking here of the avoidance of proper backups****, but also of buying the wrong machine. For example, I've read somewhere that Billyboy - remember, he needs all that big money of ours in order to save the World - now sells, for some 1,200 to 2,500€ in Europe they say, "Surface Notebooks", laptops who will be destroyed when you try to open them, even for changing the battery (which allegedly holds 3 years, so then you'll throw away the device anyway), so getting out the harddisk (or whatever it is) in order to save its data will cost you 1,200 to 2,500€, let alone the problems arising from the fact that when it's out from there, it'll not yet be installed in some rescue system - re-usable connectors when in the original settings it's all glued? So you see that one big, big case of incompetence, buying from Billyboy*****, can have such disastrous consequences that ever after, even quite competent workmates cannot save much then.
****: Data backup is easy, but proper backup of the main system is not because of the incredibly bad software design of Windows itself: Whenever you do a backup, in practice - this is very different in big corporations, and for a reason - you will install all sorts of things afterwards, and when the situation arises you would/could/should need a backup, to re-install a backup I mean, there's the question which one of the past backups should be re-installed, so in practice you probably will decide to live with what you will have got in the meantime, and all the worse for the quirks.
*****: I've been warned long ago, fortunately, so the above doesn't surprise me in any way. I own some "Natural" keyboard from that man which, almost brand-new (all the captions are totally readable, Billyboy keyboard owners know what that proves) and always treated with kid gloves by me, reliably lost all functionality for the right hand keys - or was it all keys for the left hand? I don't remember, I shelved it years ago -, once the 6-months' guarantee period was over.
So, you can pay 100€ or more for some retrieval software, or you can pay some 30 or 40€ or 100€ and more for almost nothing, but with SOME tools in the higher-priced, you will have real chances, according to your situation; I've been in that trouble some years ago, and some of those demonstrated to me they would help, and the one I then bought did help indeed.
BUT for such a program in order to be bought then, it should really demonstrate it will help when bought, which is not the case in some cases, and I've got a current example of some nagging tool which either is more or less worthless or at the very least is NOT smart enough to really demonstrate it's worthy.
I'm speaking of "Reimage
" / "Reimage Repair
" / "Reimage Online
" (it's all a total mess)
None of my notebooks get into WLan's anymore, or rather, "repair" makes they seem to connect, but then no browser opens any webpage anymore; if you browse the web for that problem, you see lots of blah-blah but no solution, and you can easily spend 2 full days with trying all the blah-blah out (which I did), without getting to any end.
So I finally installed "Reimage Online" or something, and then this blah-blah told me dozens of things I already knew, like "Your system is much slower than average."; it also told me NetWorks was a virus, or IN NetWorks was a virus, and another one to be in one of the endless lists of VLC add-ons (which might be true in the latter case and which is very probably a false positive in the former one); not a mumbling word about my missing WLan functionality (pc connected to web by lan, but WLan switch "on", and several open WLan's available).
Not a mumbling word about other possible problems either, and it even did give me - WRONG info about the temperature, 38 degrees, while I can easily almost burn my hand by laying it on the device more than the fraction of a second.
It gave me a very long list of totally irrelevant "information" while I positively know that my system - for the problem of re-installing backups see above - has got more than just one quirk actually, it's just that I can live better with those than with the one I would have liked Reimage propose to resolve.
No need to say copying the text from the screen was made impossible by them, so I made a little screenshot of the "2 viruses" part: windows\system32\drivers\network.sys, programs\videolan\vlc\axvlc.dll - when they read this, they will probably infer from it that in the future, they should withheld any specific "virus" information altogether but just say, "We found n viruses in your system, immediate action needed, blah blah blah."
Fact is, this - judging from its own usefulness demonstration - probably useless-for-me tool then offered to "repair" my system, for money, of course, but gave me not one price, but several ones for doing this; I admit I didn't bother to analyze the price alternatives; the demonstration of its incompetence
just having killed any motivation of mine to spend even a dime for that tool.
BUT since it had pretended I had 2 viruses on my pc, I checked if it intended to run anytime but didn't see any entry in my startup folder settings, so I decided to not delete the tool but to run it again in a month or so, in order to check for any new alleged "viruses".
As you can easily guess, it bothered me the very next day instead. (Did I say "yesterday" above? No, installation the day before yesterday, reappearance and prompt de-installation yesterday, making it public today: You treat me like an idiot, I promptly react, you should have known better, folks.)
(Approximative retranslation:) "Reimage - important notice - too slow on start - scan now in order to solution these problems - patented - patented procuct - resolve problems now".
Now this is stupid, isn't it? Just the day before, it had spoken about these problem and offered paid solutions, and the very next day, they offer another scan, and another solution: They don't even wait some days in-between, spying your system, for then presenting some alleged NEW problems, no, they just bother you daily (!) with what you already know and obvious have decided to live with: Stupid, stupid program, if you were a dog, we should have to put you to sleep!
That's of course what I immediately did, so I'm not absolutely shore about it bothering you every and every day, but as you can easily guess again, the de-install didn't went smoothly either:
"Are you sure you want to remove ... and leave your PC unprotected? Get Reimage professional support for free to check out your PC! Added value for free - just one phone call away! ... Call now toll-free ..."
Hahahahaha! Free, toll-free... Of course we all know what such "expert advice by phone" (or as they call it, "professional support for free") really is, in 99.99 p.c. of ALL cases: some commercial agent (preferably in India, 20 cents the hour*) pretends to be an "expert" while reading some blah-blah from their screen, to the sole purpose of your taking "immediate action", ie pay the full price for their software to show you the full monty which in this case probably would have ended up to some unfruitful run and then a, "Well, if you really want your system to be brand-new, you just re-install it then!" - hahahahaha!
*: Of course, they show one of those inevitable, pretty, "almost-white"* stock photo phone girls instead, faintly smiling right into your eyes, her pretty blouse wide open, immaculate denture, slightly overhead, eyes up, head inclined as all liars do, in a word, they're professional marketeers.
*: Why do I say "almost-white"? Well, that's the new standard for these telephone-"service"* stock photos: White, but with with one (however-)colored ancestor out of 8 (I took a screenshot; it's them who try to racially manipulate people, I'm just describing; the European "Ikea" catalogs**, those last years, have been infinitely more honest, real and likeable than these stock lies).
*: In the old times, they called this "hard-selling". Hahahahaha! And why I'm almost sure that those pretty girls or rather their real-life replacements will try to convince you how good Reimage Repair is after all when you want your money back? I'm just speculating, of course.
**: If you don't know these catalogs: 2/3 of their human models are colored now. No objection. Neither to mixed races. It's the "we'll take a pretty, female* white but with just a minimal, almost imperceptible scent of color, that will sell best" strategy I find utterly appalling, and I dare say so.
*: Female "computer experts"? On the toll-free telephone? Hahahahaha! Of course, there are female computer experts but they are quite rare and so got better things to do, most of the time. Btw, my VoIP provider has got a live chat, 24/24, and it's always "Mary" speaking to you, any time, mornings, afternoons, and in the middle of the night; they oven show you a "real" photo of "Mary" - not some stock sh** but a real photo of a real young (colored, btw) person (I changed the name, in order to not harm them since otherwise, their service is impeccable): "Mary" does not sleep but is on service 24 hours a day (don't remember if on week-ends, too).
But "Mary" is in very different moods, you can judge by what and how she writes, sometimes it's "Sir", sometimes she's very casual; at some moments in the day, she's in a genial mood, and at other times, she's formal, on the verge of coldness (but always perfectly helpful; I contact them once a year since prolongation of my contract has to be done with help, I'm one of their very early-on customers so cannot do it with their screen forms - I deem this precision important since otherwise you would ask, why can they be recommendable if users have to contact them so often? Very sorry for my encyclopedic style...): Well, that's certainly those moments when "Mary" really, really needs some minutes' sleep between two chats but the chat bell ringing too loud for some snooze...
But back to them bothering me. So you have got that "Reimage Repair Uninstall" screen with that pretty white stock girl which probably though would have got problems with the nazis, and with FOUR possible reactions:
- "Call now toll-free..."
- "Keep your PC safe with Reimage Repair Active Protector (recommended)": "recommended" in bold, and pre-selected (check mark): Well, it's preferable prospects simply buy without first incommoding their sales staff, toll-free or not, isn't it?
- "No Thanks, Just Uninstall Reimage Repair": in programming, they call this bump style: is it for impeding reading? In fact, the font is very cramped..., and
- "Cancel", which means, "have us bother you daily (?) in the meanwhile!"
So I clicked on "No Thanks..."; you will have guessed already this brought a new dialog:
"Uninstall feedback. Your opinion matters! Why are you uninstalling Reimage? Which software are you using to protect your PC? What other issues did you experience while using Reimage?" Well, I could have written "Reimage sucks" but then, I preferred to give my opinion in public, and in detail. "Name: ... Email:"
This without any more pretty girl now, but with "Back", "Skip" and "Cancel"; I admit that from their text, I could probably have given my opinion even without filling the Name/Email fields (but I didn't try), and I also admit that "Skip" is the pre-selected button here.
So I clicked on "Skip". As you already will have guessed... and know what? YOU ARE RIGHT!
The (by me) long-awaited web page opened up in my default web browser and read:
"Is it true that you want to leave us?
WAIT! Before you remove Reimage completely and leave this page, we've got a deal for you!
You'll get 50% off the regular price of Reimage by clicking REDEEM OFFER below!
This offer is good for a limited time only.
etc., etc., and again "Our professional support team" (see the photo in the dialog before, I suppose? Hahahahaha!), and I have to admit that they even "guarantee" a 60-days refund; I of course don't know if that "guarantee" is reliable; as said above, another software vendor also "guarantees" a refund but the web abounds of reports by people NOT having got their money back... BUT that's a big video play-around-software vendor from China, and you cannot blame Reimage people for that not-connected-in-any-way third party's behavior, that's for sure; on the other hand, even if you pay by PayPal, PayPal will not help you to get your money back in case of immaterial goods with no physical support, so you'll rely upon Reimage.
Also, since their scans rely upon web communication, you couldn't even blame them if they tried to reset your system to any pre-Reimage-Repair "repair", since "no money, no service" is a widely accepted precept you couldn't rap them to apply in your case, in case, and such a reset could probably have some harmful side effects, in case even unwanted by them - bear in mind your Windows installation is a living beast now, at least in generation ten.
But you see, if Reimage/Repair/Online or whatever they finally call it, did show me the real quirks my system has AND would have been available for my other pc(s), too, let's say 2 at least (and perhaps it even is, but that having become irrelevant, I didn't bother to check anymore), I would have taken the chance of the investment... and would neither have encountered their display dummy nor their half-price, hahahahaha.
So what do we learn here? Show what you'll do for the money or shut up, instead of showcasing pretty girls who don't even work for you.
*: Of course I'm aware that such offerings get lots of paying customers, whatever they do, since more than one prospect is in panic and will thus be willing to do lots of wishful thinking even when the presentation of (in???)competence is as lousy as with Reimage. Either they are as bad as it seems, or they have lots of presentational homework to do. Remember, this thread is about NOT to conceive trials.
As for my unresolved WLan problem, I consider buying a USB WLan stick, they're pretty cheap now that "nobody" wants/needs them anymore. Perhaps (!) they come with enough electronics of their own in order to overcome the internal pc de-set problems. (*-problem above resolved, in case you will have read this add-on during the first 10 minutes of its publication.)
EDIT July 2, 2017: Reimage is even much worse than I had thought, see my additional comments on them here: https://www.donation...82.0;last_msg=410253