Linked by mjhi11 on Thu 16th Sep 2010 20:13 UTC
Apple I love OSNews, but it does seem like some of its editors enjoy just a little too much taking a good natured jab at Apple upon occasion (well, more like every chance that particular editor can get). I thought it time for a little good news and analysis about Apple that critics often overlook.
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RE: App store pricing
by mjhi11 on Fri 17th Sep 2010 15:29 UTC in reply to "App store pricing"
mjhi11
Member since:
2009-08-15

Fact is, while there are many decent open source applications...I use several myself, commercial software is quite often superior in many product categories. That's just a fact.

2D and 3D CAD - There really isn't a reliable, dependable open source CAD system that can compete with AutoCAD, SolidWorks, Pro/E, etc. right now.

CRM & PIM - Customer relationship management and personal information management is another area where open source lags significantly capabilities and features available in such applications as GoldMine, Outlook, SalesLogix, ACT!, Chaos Intellect Salesforce.com, NetSuite.com and others. Granted, Thunderbird gets better every day but each of these applications (in my opinion of course) are superior (maybe excluding Outlook...ugh) but it's focus is very narrow, no forecasting, no reports, limited mail merge, etc.

WYSIWG Web Editing - As much as I hate to admit it (as it's my primary example of spending hundreds of dollars on a commercial application and being disappointed with it) there isn't a superior WYSIWG web design solution to DreamWeaver (but my go-to tool for quick and dirty...and I do mean dirty is FrontPage which ironically started out on the Mac before Microsoft acquired it). Nvu and KompoZer are all but abandoned, Amaya is a mess, Bluefish isn't much better.

As I mention in my article, my goal is to use the best, or more often, the most efficient tool to get the job done.

It's not always about "cost". What I find interesting is in debates like this the cost of TIME always seems to be ignored.

For example, my billable rate for services is $200 per hour. If we assume just half of that for internal projects, it doesn't take too many hours to close any gap between free and paid applications.

If I can complete a project in half the time with a paid application versus struggling with a less feature rich open source application for example, then doesn't it make sense to use the commercial application.

Same with building a computer versus purchasing a pre-built system from Apple, Dell, HP or others. Once you figure in the cost of time and productivity, recognizing that it may take a few weeks to build your own system versus opening the box, plugging the system in and installing a few applications getting productive immediately, there's value in an off-the-shelf system for many who don't want to become "geeks" like us.

Truth is price is relative, particularly when you figure in the cost of time, labor and productivity.

Of course I'm technical enough to build my own computer (in fact I'm currently repurposing a couple of old desktops, using FreeNAS and other open source tools to serve as proxy servers, file servers, for our company even as we speak), but clearly many in business and home users as well see significant value in purchasing a system off-the-shelf, plugging it in, installing and few applications and getting on with their business as they've made the decision that its a better use of their time to be computer users, instead of computer builders.

That's what's awesome about computing today...regardless of your experience, your goals and objectives, etc. there's a system out there, there's an operating system out there, there's an application out there for you. It's an exciting time for everyone including Apple customers.

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