posted by Joshua Boyles on Mon 9th Jun 2003 16:45 UTC

"Selling It , Continuing It"
6. Selling It

In this part of my proposal I hd a detailed outline of an advertising campaign, but I really am kind of embarrased by it, so I'll just go into the rest of the selling it section.

The other main point for selling the OS is the cost. The OS and bundled software should come at a price of less than just the operating system for the other guys (we'll say it should be a little less than $100). That is for a full version. Now, there will be two types of upgrades, as I will explain.

Version numbers for the OS wll dictate how much is paid to upgrade. Decimal number advances will imply small software and security enhancements (which is why a new version will probably be coming out once a month or so). The point behind this should be that, if it's working, don't fix it. You don't need to upgrade from 3.04 to 3.05 because it probably addresses an issue which you haven't had. These upgrades will be extremely cheap, simply trade in your old disc, pay ten dollars, and walk out of the store with a new upgraded OS, as long as the two are within a tenth of each other (that means that you can upgrade from 3.10 to 3.20 for ten dollars, and your old disc). For anything within one whole number it would be twenty dollars (for instance, you could go from 3.01 to 3.99 for twenty dollars, and your old disc). For big upgrades, with large changes in the OS itself and many programs, you would go to a new whole number. This would cost fifty dollars (for for fifty dollars you could go from 3.53 to 4.0, and your old disc). For anything outside of one whole number difference you would just have to buy a completely new OS.

One exception to this would be version 1.0, which would be the cost of an upgrade for a full version for the first six months, to make it easier to switch. Licencing to companies like Dell and Compaq would be different as well. Instead of a price per user basis you would simply sell one gold copy of the mini-DVD and allow them to make as many copies as they want as long as it is bundled with a computer. That way the computer retailers would be encouraged to switch as well, and they could do your advertising for you.

Of course you could also download ISO images, but I personally think it would be easier just to pay ten bucks a month and stay up to date.

7. Continuing It

Now I will explain why open source is so important. It is mainly because if we maintain open source we can expect the cooperation of most open source developers. If someone has a program they think would go well with the rest of the OS then they can contribute it. In time I think developers would program with our OS as the standard, attempting to make their programs compatible with it. We would not have to spend money on continuing developtment, but instead simply work on integrating what they create into the operating system. As this becomes even more popular more and more programs will be made using the open source model.

Another idea to take care of some deficiencies in programming would be to denote money or computers to a college with the understanding that they would program one piece of software as a class project.

The main point behind this is that the cooperation of the open source community will provide a huge and free labor pool, and with little encouragement except for recognition you can use their programs and be viewed as a flexible collaborator instead of an inflexible dictator attempting to grab as much money as possible from the end user. And that is the main point, that this system is made not with making money as the major goal (although I believe that it will be a nice side effect) but as making the consumers life better.

Appendix A: Mini-DVD Reader

The mini-DVD reader is one of the most crucial parts of this entire system. It allows an entire OS to be stored where it can't be hurt. It has two definite advantage, the first is that it's virus proof, since they can't infect something they can't write to. Your flash card could be infected, however, but even if that happened it would only mess up your personal files and not bring the entire computer down. The other advantage is that the computer would be (what I refer to as) "Grandma" proof. What I mean by that (and I'm not trying to insult grandmas, because I have several excellent one's myself) is that someone who maybe doesn't know a huge amount about computers and might normally mess up the operating system accidentally, can't. This is because if things get really messed up all you have to do is restart the computer, and it's like you have a fresh load. Being Grandma Proof is very closely related to being "Computer Expert" proof and "Oh yeah, just delete it, it'll be fine" proof.

Anyway, enough about the advantages, let's talk about how this is actually going to be done.

The first difference would be that the mini-DVD of this reader has eight small (perhaps a half millimeter in diameter) holes drilled in the plastic part which correspong to eight small "posts" which stick out of the spindle which the mini-DVD sits on. The "posts" go through the holes and into a stabalizer, which is hinged on the first mini-DVD reader housing. I'll go into the two housings later on.

What you have is a mini-DVD resting on a flat (approximately two centimeter) piece of material with eight "posts" sticking through it and into another two centimeter wide circular stabalizer, which rides on a double set of ball bearings. The motor spinning the mini-DVD spins at around 10 000 rpms (I read that that was the fastest sustainable speed for a small electric motor currently). The eye tracks like a usual cd/dvd-rom eye (I toyed with the thought of having the eye spinning in the opposite direction, to inscrease speed, but that would increase vibration, decrease accuracy, and add moving parts). The entire apparatus rests within an open topped box, which is inside another slightly larger box with a hinged lid. The inside box is attached to the outer box by rubber pads, so that, again, vibration is reduced. Cables supplying power and

One note is that the mini-DVD must be loaded vertically, then have the stabalizer put down on it, then have the airtight lid of the second box shut. One cosmetic thing is that it would be cool to have a plexiglass, or clear plastic lid, with a gasket on the box and not the glass, so that it looks all neat and clean. The final note is that it would use serial ATA, not necessarily because it could use the extra bandwidth, but mainly becaue of the size factor.

Table of contents
  1. "The general idea, Hardware Issues"
  2. "Software Issues"
  3. "Developing It , Testing It "
  4. "Selling It , Continuing It"
  5. "More Appendices"
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