ATTENTION: You are viewing a page formatted for mobile devices; to view the full web page, click HERE.

Main Area and Open Discussion > General Software Discussion

On software pricing

<< < (3/3)

(Second of two posts of mine immediately following each other.)

User experience can overcome competition, as can really useful ("really" meaning "really useful for a LOT of people"!) superior functionality; for "user experience", there is a restriction, too: The more complicated the software functionality (example: a fully-featured file manager), the more "user experience" (or the lack of it) comes into play (we've had the (positive) DO example above and which also proves that with some additional "user experience", you can overcome the competition even price-wise, meaning you can even enforce considerably higher prices (if you count the updates they are even multiplied), without even cutting (too much) into the market share you would have had with "competitive" prices perhaps; of course this latter assertion is subject to some doubt since they never tried out if they got 80 p.c. of the paid-file-managers market if they priced DO "competitively"; anyway, the market for file managers is a fragile anyway since any time, MS could incorporate much more file management functionality into their operating system.

"User experience" in very simple tools (in which your working time is very limited and where the notion of "fun" could not really apply) would be more reduced, both in scope and in importance, to something of minimisation of fuss, minimisation of necessary user interaction (steps) in order to get to the result, incl. for example variants management, the tool not asking each time for all the single settings but providing stored and named variants from which to choose and coming with their settings stored by the user beforehand ("once and for all", in fact for as long as the user will not change the variants' details); you could call such variants "presets". (These are general considerations.)

Now to crazy-pricing (and naming becoming inadequate over time). Today, PDF Writer  is 85 p.c. off, on bitsdujour, this means for 9$ instead of 60.

It's a pdf printer-driver, this means you install it as a printer driver, for it to produce a pdf. I didn't try this product, don't need it al all, so this "review" could contain mistakes, my point is pricing here, not a review of this program. bitsdujour says: "PDF Writer lets you create PDF documents from any Windows program that has a print function."

There are some free and paid pfd printer drivers, some well-known free one is said to install malware, so perhaps there is a good reason indeed to install one of those in the 10-12$ range if you really need such a "pdf printer". Many will not need one since they will have installed one of the quite numerous applications which come with such a pdf printer, and which more often than not are then also available as printers from other applications (similar to fonts installed by one application and which are then available to anything in the system). I even remember to have had additional pdf printer drivers installed by some trial software, and the the pdf printer driver was left when behind when I de-installed the trial; currently, I've got several pdf printers installed in my system, without even knowing which one comes from which application.

But the PDF Writer has some goodies, too, bitsdujour: "Please note folks, the application can merge and split PDF files and it can also add text or images as watermarks." So it comes with what you could call a fully-featured GUI while it's very rudimentary for most of such pdf printer drivers. Now I don't know by the heck of me why someone who does NOT have a fully-featured pdf editor (30-40$) would need images as watermarks in their pdf's, but clearly, the merge and split functions are often needed, and dedicated programs for this are, for some, overpriced (40$, full version now "on offer" for 20$ instead; they're obviously checking if that new price more than doubles sales or not) and not needed, since here again, for the same price, you get fully-featured pdf editors which include that functionality, and also, there are free programs for that (Icecream and others=, without limitations, or the free version of one of the paid ones, and which can handly rather big documents for splitting and which works also fine for merging most documents and for all of them with a little fuss (ex Adolix Split & Merge, now 7-PDF Split & Merge from another entity ( ), seems to be the successor of the former which was halted, or then is at least very, very similar to it): It merges up to 5 documents but which can have any number of pages each, and you can use the same tool, if really needed, twice or several times in a row.

If you have 60$ to spend (the regular price of PDF Writer), you'll get quite advanced pdf editors (or two of the more basic ones), and I suppose you'll have all the functionality of PDF Writer included, with much more; again, this is not a review of PDF Writer but a consideration of prices for dedicated tools vs competiting tools and vs more complete applications which include the tools' functionality.

From the above - again, I could be partly mistaken -, it seems evident for me that an adequate price for PDF Writer would be 12, 15 or 20$, with 20$ certainly a "correct" one, but with 15 (14.95: sales doubled?) or especially 12$ PDF Writer certainly becoming a so-called "non-brainer", with sales probably 3 or 4 times the ones at 20$. Also, the naming should be revised, "PDF Writer" not including the, as said, highly-useful Split-and-Merge functionality, something like "PDF Tool" or such being less limitative for the appreciation of potential buyers not knowing the tool yet.

As you can see from my 12$ suggestion, it's not me intention to denigrate this program (it's sold at 9$ at bitsdujour, from which just 4$ go to the developer), but it serves here as an example for pricing which, as far as I see it, totally out of reach considering the competition (from other dedicated tools, from more complete applications, and even from tools which are there "by chance", installed alongside by third-party software), and which, ironically, could probably get a very high share of the special market for such tools if priced smartly (here: pdf printer / merger / splitter). In any case, I firmly believe that this tool, priced at a fifth of its current price, could generate revenue tenfold or more.

Btw, I've seen quite some time that applications or tools in particular came named inadequately, with further development having put their functionality well beyond their original naming, which thus seriously hampered their sales now since most prospects take the name limitation for granted, without looking into possible plus functionality.

Also, there is the notion of convenience: If some dedicated tool (here: pdf split/merge) is "cheap enough" (12$, and with full functionality, not as a "lite" version which forces you to first think, will I be within its limits or not?), it may become of interest even though you have the same functionality available within some bigger "package", for example for very different loading times and/or for the functionality readily and very easily available within the dedicated tool (immediate availability), while in your more complete application, it's more or less "hidden" within menus/ribbons, and/or introduces other complications in there which are not needed in most use cases. Of course, this aspect best works for tools which provide the functionality as quickly and easily as possible, and when it's a functionality which is very often needed outside a more complete functional framework; both pdf merge and pdf split are core examples for such functionality needed without any other arrounding it.

(The more complete Abbyy pdf editor has got a discrete pdf merger tool, so it's distinct from (but bought with) the main program anyway, but for the heck of me I never discovered a pdf split tool which I need even more often though, so I always use the free combined 7-Pdf tool, all the more so since I can never remember from one case of need to the next if the Abbyy tool misses the combining or the splitting). So my point here is, even if a tool is redundant, if it's "available enough", both by price and then later on for / by it (/ by its way of) executing frequent tasks, it's successfully marketable.

Another phenomenon is slicing functionality and/or scope down to an extreme and sell each function/scope in a different tool, in a wish to maximize revenues by inviting the same customer to buy 5 or 10 different tools at the same time; this outrageous behavior can be seen from some tool vendors in the database, Outlook (!) or file format/translation sidecar businesses. I suppose that most of them seriously damage their reputation and their possible revenue by this inappropriate try to squeeze the purse of their possible customers wherever they try this in fields where indeed the same customers would need (or would like to have) several ones of their very similar tools at the same time. It's different of course for tools where the same customer in most cases would only need one of the very specialized tools from that vendor, but that's very rare while the policy of slicing tools up into unnaturally tiny functionality and/or scope fractions is quite frequent.

To stay in my pdf-split-merge example, it would be unsuccessful to try to sell TWO such tools, one for merging (12$) and one for splitting (12$), since while it's true that you rarely use those functions together, you'll need both of them quite often, at least hypothetically, and even at 6$ apiece, prospects would get the impression that the developer is milking them since their functionality, while distinct, is conceptionally tight-knit, so any try to make prospects "choose one or the other or pay double price" (even if those are very low and doubling it remains perfectly acceptable) will end up for most prospects in not buying any.

tomos, interesting info! In fact, XY... isn't that bad for pic viewing lately (while xplorer2 is bad for that): It has the usual quick file view, but then also, since some versions, the "Floating Preview" (best on big screens of 2-screen setup, similar to FastStone ImageViewer); this being said, I'm not entirely sure I would need any file manager for viewing photos, I use this FS ImageViewer for that, but you say it's not pictures in your case, so I cannot say if (and why perhaps) FS ImageViewer was less good at it in your case. Also, I understand that DO is said to be so versatile that very simply the use of additional programs (even free ones like that FS ImageViewer) is not needed. I own XY... (paid, lifetime) AND the FS thing (free), and in spite of knowing how good XY... is with pics, for them I only and always use FS, but cannot say why. I suppose I like to have dedicated programs for distinct uses, but there is no real reason for my choice.

Also, I've said it, I only use FreeCommander as my file manager, in practice, while you use DO all day long; for pics I would need to start XY... then, so I can start FS instead, while your DO is already running. This is to say, it's all about convenience when there is NO quality difference, and I suppose there is no quality difference between pic rendering between FS, XY... and DO, but I could be mistaken about DO's capabilities: It has also been said as to be very good with file preview and pics in particular, I just want to say perhaps XY... is now as good as DO here, but for somebody accustomed to DO, that would of course not be a reason to switch horses.

So indeed, we've got another element of pricing, and there is no pun intended when I say, even with a lesser price (XY... lifetime license vs regular update costs for DO, so the former is cheaper in the long run) at probably more or less identical software quality (which I just suggest as a possibility), inertia will hold against switching, "inertia" being used as a strictly technical term here, without "judging" or something.
-ital2 (May 10, 2017, 01:09 PM)
--- End quote ---
you're tying yourself in knots here :)

if you do want to know why I said what I said (clear preference stated for DO for my work with files, many of which are images), I can tell you. Mind you I would need to look at the competition again to be fair to them. And it would be veering off-topic here I guess.

And yeah, inertia is often a factor once one is using and used to a programme -- for me as for others -- it just felt odd you suggesting it in my case when I had said I had reasons for favouring a particular one.

tomos, no pun was intended, and you're right about the knot. Again, I'm thankful for your personal motivational explanations; almost always motivations are entangled, not pure. No pun intended either with the following which also should play in your persevering choice of DO over its competitors; and yes, people have the right to choose the software of their choice, I'm just interested in the possible underlying motivations since I think coders could write better software if they fully understood those. So:

Is it possible to sell software by cool?

"Selling" meaning here selling more and/or selling at higher than regular prices; "cool" meaning by coolness, by a high quality image, by an image of sheer brilliance, of elegance, which of course should be conveyed by optimized user experience (interaction with the gui), but probably will be communicated by the graphical design.

I also think this was easier in the early days of Windows, since then some applications came with graphic layouts which simple weren't available from the competition, for some time at least; for example, both Word and Word Perfect had lots of prestige over WordStar; at the time, they both came with so-called proportional fonts and formatting, when WordStar had no formatting yet and only had a monospace font, on screen and on paper, which was even a big double step back behind what the dedicated text processors of the day were able to do (which WordStar recouped technically, it was far too late; that was another example of user experience, "prettiness", as a very big sales advantage); today I don't see much many such application with a superior coolness factor, neither do I see it brings much money.

Again, DO comes to mind (price range above), and then again, TheBrain, which is a graphical database and thus asks for 249$ instead of its competitors which do it without graphic representation but more functionally and which see in the range of 90-100$ instead or even less; another try at this had been some Brazilian wiki which sold for 120 or 130$, with some graphic representation; it's down to 40 now: It becomes evident that coolness is not a function of superior functionality alone and cannot even reached by it if other functionality is under-developed so that the application isn't that useful in the end.

TheBrain is not that bad an example for a certain degree of coolness; in fact it's graphical representation provides promises for easy inter-linking even of remote elements, and there's a strong promise of usefulness in this, when in fact, this application does not make it as easy as it promises, but certainly it's easier done here than in its list-based competitors; it's evident that they should allow for easy linking of the current element to any element in a list of search results, to ease this up considerably.

Anyway, I think the notion of [p]promise to do something more[/b] with it than currently is a strong factor in cool: promise of widening up your current capabilities, even if that promise is not fulfilled by the design of the software since it gets too complicated then, and availability of the important elements increases again. I repeat myself here by referring to my "Pulse" concept in my Navicat Review (link above), but I'm sure indeed that metadata, not only (relatively) stable metadata but also sort of "semi-plastic" metadata-on-the-run (which means immediate on/off, and with the possibility to store, also in combinations) should play a prominent role in displaying data/elements.

In other words, it's the notion of power to / empowerment of the user which comes into play for a prospect to shield out considerably more money than for similar applications: The user pays more for feeling to be in charge; things becoming too complicated will dampen this feeling but it may be too late then.

Thus, it's important for software to bring feelings of power-over-the-data quite early on in the trial period, in order for the prospect to buy the thing, even if later on they're let down by over-complication.

Two - quite different - Todo applications sell for more than some others, Swift To-Do List and MLO; it's not about more functionality, it's about the user feeling in control with their things when using either of them. Compare with the equally and in part even more powerful TaskMerlin which in practical use is a complete mess; sorry to say this but I tried them, and I fully understand why the other two are so much more successful, at least that's what I suppose from allegedly large user bodies mentioning them quite often.

So it's about feeling good again, but here again, it's Microsoft who throw the market upside down, more and more people now using OneNote (which is available for free), and which has go some additional functionality which comes very handy, so I'm not sure about the future of TheBrain and other text databases, and of its future as a premium offer (249$), all the less so when I think about how it will conveniently display data on a smartphone (or a tiny tablet), "lists are more mobile" if I may say so.

In the early days of mindmap programs, mindmap programs in themselves were something prestigious, the same was true for Flowcharters. The latter are an almost defunct software category by now, and Mindmaps don't live their old age really well either. Here again, Microsoft dumped most possible use cases of these programs of today with their ubiquitous presentation software.

At this point in time, it's doubtful if any desktop application can build up prestige, since the sheer fact that it's not available out of the office destroys any prestige it could have strived at by other means. Also, and even if you do not need the data (to that extent) on the road, the user's sense of "control" is damaged if they technically cannot access their material from mobile devices: the absence of the possibility, if ever needed, devalues the software, since that absence limits and thus devalues the user (It's in the rare cases where the data is simply never used on mobile devices where this does not apply: here again, Adobe are very lucky since they would have a big problem, did their customers wish to make mobile use of their applications.

Also, I'm positive about the fact that in the end, any try to choose what data you will need to access by mobile devices, and which data can stay in the office, will fail, so cloud storage, and whenever needed, private cloud storage, will eventually take over, and this brings a new aspect to the notion of "elegance": Elegance of access: Speed, completeness, economy in the use of the limits of the lesser mobile devices (less speed, less screen estate, less keyboard use), in a word optimization within the dearth.

This possibly includes alternative display of data than on the screens in the office, and nevertheless "it being all there", and without the user to have too heavily to adapt, will be the developers' challenge.

Did I say SalesForce has prices of around 20$ per mobile device and per month for very basic functionality, and that their prices reach a whopping vicinity of 200$ per mobile device and per month for the full functionality set? I cannot judge the price/value of this, but it becomes evident from this example that some software makers now try to build up price value from a notion of "complete access", while it should go without saying that in 2017 and further, complete access must become the common ground, the condition every modern software must fulfill, and then the exceptional user experience, by ease of use, can justify some higher price; prices nearing 200$ a month per mobile device seem outrageous, and it's then of interest if such corporations try to hold data as hostage, for example by weird formats, since it's obvious this market of the future holds a lot of opportunities by being cheaper.

This is not a contradiction to what I've said above: When both prices do no real harm, being cheaper in itself is of no value, but if the market leaders practice prices out of the reach, there's plenty of space to entice customers away, if that's technically feasible, for those customers that is.

From what I see, pc software has never been really cool then, and few applications for the general public have succeeded, and then in a quite limited way, to position themselves over their competition. I'm sure this will change for web applications; it's quite a difference if the price gap between two competing applications is 50$ every two years (DO vs its competitors), or if it's 50$ per user and month.

It's ironic that while the cool factor never that much entered into play for software, it's quite different for operating systems. I don't really know MacOS, but it always has been acclaimed as the far superior and "cool" system (it seems there's some "Finder", perhaps there are other things superior); Windows has always been functional at best. The same is true for iOS vs Android, the former is seen as cool, the latter as functional... at best.

This is of high relevance since Apple prices are not only a function of their beautifying the hardware, and they decidedly do, but in order to get the operating system, you had and you have to buy the hardware from them, and this factor cannot be undervalued.

It's ironic Apple predominance for quality/prestige/elegance seekeers (these terms are not synonyms, even though with regards to Apple products, some observers take them for that) will probably come to an end with the full advent of software as a service. (If I were them, I'd develop a totally superior browser into which then web services could hook like never before.

Remember the web browser was the first real try to standardize the gui (I'm not speaking of standardization of gui elements in dedicated applications), and in 2017, it's said that iOS applications are better than their functional browser counterparts, but this is too inefficient in the long run and will come to an end, and thus there's room for some super-browser which gives superior quality (incl. speed and all) for some web applications which will function then much better than in vanilla browsers, and I'm sure those web applications will be the future, but it's not possible to make them as high-brow when at the same time they are expected to function as well in a whole bunch of disparate run-of-the-mill browsers; some of the big shots will grasp this opportunity, and application development will tremendously benefit from it.

(second of 2 posts immediately following each other)

InfoSelect would have been a good example though since it had been one of the very first full-fledged text databases, and thus in its time, it must have been something quite special, "empowerment" and all, it was there at the time, by lack of much competition; similar for askSam which targeted the same market, more or less, perhaps with a little bit more weight put on the "archiving" side (imported documents; it also was the perfect crm database for people who didn't want to invest in database programming: "fields"), while InfoSelect was marketed more as a personal information manager?

Both programs came with high prices at the time, with askSam within the then usual 1,000$ price range (see above), and while I don't know the InfoSelect price of the time, it's always around 300$ now (or is it down to 249?), which doesn't convey any more exclusivity but just makes many people shaking their heads in disbelief (askSam is defunct): the degree of technical superiority hadn't been upheld accordingly.

Also come to mind, but I may be mistaken here: dBase, the expensive program for "experts", vs Paradox, the "cheap" program for people who were less so?

Anyway, it's evident that today, TheBrain plays with exclusivity, the notion of "not being for everyone, but for sophisticated customers", which when successfully communicated, allows for higher pricing.

As said, the promise is about more complete and more immediate access to all your stuff, by alleged plastic/flexible access/display, with free, immediate interlinking, while the cheaper "competitors" (which all compete more within their group than with TheBrain: this is a core aspect of the exclusivity concept) are built in trees, more or less like concrete, and then the better ones must superimpose the concept of "cloning" which makes those trees a little bit more flexible.

Another concept by which developers try to break up the inflexibility inherent to trees, is done by replacing the tree by tagging (CintaNotes, Clibu), where then, very ironically and in order to preserve the accessibility of the material with rising element count, a tag tree is put up, but this thread is not for prematurely ridiculing tag trees as a possible dead-end; CintaNotes Professional now allows for inspecting how such a tag tree (not only for sub-tags (tag-hierarchy), but also and in particular for tag combinations) works in practice, and the developer of Clibu delves deep into the arising problems, too, from beta to beta.

But there is a problem with trees indeed, and I think that the solution comes with avoiding non-plastic, non-just-virtual, ephemeral trees altogether, from a rethink of a the link paradigm. (A traditional tree is nothing but ONE basic form of link: unidirectional ones of the meaning parent-child ((possibly multiple and equal) subordination links in each parent: "has as immediate child"), even "siblings" aren't but elements which have got the same ancestors, in exactly the same lineage (path identity), and their order in the list (which is also present in mindmaps and in TheBrain, just not so prominently displayed) is then determined by the order in which their links are in their parent (if you had unidirectional links in the other direction: "has as parent", the order would be lost, and you have a classic tag tree; you can of course introduce more metadata from which then the order will be re-established).

But this is a thread about software pricing and not about links and trees being too basic, just let me say here that trees should be a display, not a storage format for knowledge bases (I'm speaking of the metadata concepts within the underlying relational database here; I know that they technically aren't tree databases anymore), even less so since the full tree will be rarely of use, so it's a conceptual error to build it up to begin with. But that's another subject, also with regards to current file systems on the Windows front.

Anyway, TheBrain conceptually does a little bit more already than some traditional text databases do and thus is able, for the time being, to sell for 250 to 500 per cent of their prices, while I cannot identify the relative weights of this factor and the "it's alternative, graphic display here" one, the latter also being sort of evidence for the former one and thus reassuring the customer: it's not only "pretty", but it's also "proof" of alleged superiority, looks let aside.

For DO, my other example of choice here, it's quite similar: There, too, there is much visual plasticity integrated which is not available (to that degree at least) from its competitors, and here again, that's a promise of both technical superiority and better, more complete, more easy, more immediate access, in short:

A promise of being in better control - but without it becoming too demanding for that. - I think herein lies the secret, or at least this should be the main element of several ones playing together.

See the original thread (Navicat Review) from which this is a spin-off, and the spin-off of this thread here, (How NOT to conceive trials (and some new ideas about them)).

EDIT June 10, 2017: Too many giveaways for a given software
In the "Trials" thread, I also spoke of the combination paid software vs freeware versions of the same software with the respect to trial design. Here with regards to software pricing, freeware and giveaways (which are not the same marketing means of course but which sometimes go hand in hand), it's again worth discussing.

My example today is Zoom Player which sells for 40$ (or with lifetime updates for 100$); it's regularly on "sale" sites for much less, it has got a freeware version which is available all around the year, and in particular, its paid version is regularly on giveaway sites, you guessed it, for free, sometimes just a 100 licenses, and most of the time, without such restrictions, and so I now proudly own a permanent license now while the last time, the time before and the dozens of times I could have downloaded it for free from somewhere, I didn't even bother to do so: The frenzy by which it had been thrown after anyone wanting it, had sufficiently devalued it in my eyes; 1 day a year is probably ok but every three weeks or so, come on!

But then, this software has deep problems, even independently of its kamikaze marketing: Somewhere, they say, "Its GUI has been developed the non-techy user in mind." (citation from memory), and indeed, its GUI is quite terrible, not only in the free, but also in the paid version, and 40$ is not nothing, so it better had some standard functionality the competition has got, too.

Have a look at the free vs paid versions comparison table: - wow: That's a lot of functionality, on paper, or on screen!

Also, in the settings menu, there is some "advanced" option, and then, the same settings menu gets "on steroids", to employ that terrible expression you encounter almost daily with respect to software nowadays.

So we've got some contradiction between the 13-year-olds' GUI and the "hidden powers", on top of the fact that there are some other free alternatives, like VLC, but there are more.

And, as far as I have tried it out, Zoom Player (paid) comes with a Trump mode: it doesn't deliver ("Trump mode" isn't my find, I just like it so much): For example, for DVDs, in the "advanced mode" of the settings, you can opt for premier language English (or some other) for the sound track, the sub titles, the DVD menus, but:

- just 1 choice; NOT: "original language if English or Norvegian or Italian" or whatever, NO second choice for original soundtrack Norvegian or Italian" (or whatever), NO second choice for sub titles (first choice English, if not available: Norvegian, let alone of some third choice: if not available: Italian) or whatever: So, if you regularly see films from 2 or more countries, no way of presetting the original languages and preferred sub titles in order of precedence;

- it doesn't even work (Trump mode); instead of English (which is available on these DVDs), it gets to some other language, so it's really, really bad.

There are NO settings for DVD languages case by case, from this program, as there are in ANY real competitor, ie in paid video players, as for example in WinDVD I press a for the sound track and s for the sub titles.

Oh, but there are, probably, if you download and install some additional filters, just look into their forum, from 2004 on, but sorry, I'm too dumb to install all this, and then I don't know how to do the language choice for a given DVD: I want to see the film, not doing settings for 15 minutes every time, and I didn't find the commands for variable fast forward and all that either, the GUI's just too primitive.

So Zoom Player (paid) probably is a product with no market since as soon as you pay, there are probably much better tools around, and its special functionality is VERY special - it has got an API but that probably will not mean you just have to pay the developer 40$ and then can distribute the embedded player in your own software; of course, some people that make use of its special crafts will buy, probably pay 100 and are done with it for all time.

And other people will continue to use the freeware version or get the paid version on those around 12 occasions p.a. it's free.

So my guess is, you only give away paid software for free with such regularity if you're really desperate and have built a piece of software which is not coherent at all. To the developer: Make it, from "free vs 40$ but free 12 times a year", "free vs 20$ year-round" and discover that you'll much better results, and rename it "Quirky Player" - no, no, the latter suggestion's just a joke.

Yes, I know, "Americans don't need other languages" - but is that correct?

When other video players do the settings per DVD and you do it within your general settings, why don't you do it a meaningful manner, as described above? Even in the U.S., a choice for English or Spanish first, then English OR Spanish subs and menus would be helpful, let alone Canada with French (3 choices, by order of precedence), and not speaking of the rest of the world.

Thus: Whenever you do pricing, discover your market(s) first, and think about your software and if it appeals to its possible market(s) in its current state; if not, amend your software. (What I would do, I'd downright cut off Zoom Player into two different programs, with quite a different GUI for the "professional" version (assuming here that the advanced features it must have and which I was unable to discover are of real use for some, that is) and some 20$ enhanced version.) And: Don't give away your software so often (if at all) that anybody remotely interested in it will have plenty of occasions to get it for free. Well, that's so basic I'm almost ashamed of putting it down, but then, that's as obvious as them doing a 10-days trial for software that could seriously be trialed only after many weeks of basic (free) use.

EDIT June 11, 2017: As for ridiculous-pricing, see my today's add-on over at "Software Trials" (link above): The player software "PowerDVD" currently is available at half-price again, but according to my observations - or should I better say impressions, since I don't check daily admittedly? -, that's the case about 3/4 of the year (with that and its siblings, link over there in the thread linked here - it's just the percentages that vary a little bit, here and there), and those few people who really buy at statutury price, not knowing any better, get all my sympathy. It's like those Persian rags "85 p.c. off" where the "85 p.c. off" price is the expected price and probably three times too much paid, but what do I know.

EDIT June 13, 2017: TheBrain
More on TheBrain (in general and on its pricing) over there in the "Trial" thread (incl. external links); also, my stance on TB expressed there is more balanced and more detailed; my formula above about it "not being functional" has been way too sloppy and not correct in its acrimony.

...Fact is, the more sophisticated software is - and all those file managers, DO, XY..., xplorer2 are -, the lesser the chances for a competing product to replace software a user is quite accustomed to already, for the additional reason of their time / learning / knowledge / know-how investment then being invalidated. ...
-ital2 (May 10, 2017, 01:09 PM)
--- End quote ---

Yes, I reckon that is generally likely to be true - and is specifically so in my case (being a longtime user of xplorer²). I reckon that, in xplorer², I have what is the "best" (as in "meets approx. 80% or more of all my peculiar requirements for a file manager") from what is a relatively wide selection of arguably very good alternative file managers. I have trialled all/most of these main alternatives too, out of interest and for comparison. As a software "agnostic", I can quite see why other users could have different peculiar requirements for a file manager that might (say) be better satisfied by some other file manager product(s) than xplorer², though I am almost daily reminded how brilliantly useful xplorer² is for my purposes.

Preference/choice for software can be a complex matter. There are so many criteria - and they are not necessarily always properly understood or articulated by the user - that one might consciously and/or unconsciously apply to selection of a piece of software. Some of those requirements one only newly-discovers on using/trialling a product, but once discovered, they become "yours". For example, that is what happened a lot to me whilst I was trialling MS OneNote.

I learned some time ago that it could be amazingly useful to help users identify and prioritise their requirements for product functionality (not product "features"), by means of conducting a methodical analysis. I apply this approach to my own requirements also.
For example, I drew this up a while back for a clipboard manager - another brilliantly useful piece of software called Clipboard Help & Spell (CHS):  User Requirements for CHS

I'm not really all that interested in clipboard managers for their own sake, but in how they can help me as a tool in a set of tools to better meet my evolving functional requirements for information/knowledge management. You will be able to see my approach to this detailed here: Microsoft OneNote - how to make it your 21st century Zettelkasten PIM.


[0] Message Index

[*] Previous page

Go to full version