We were the first to inform you about the buyout of gobeProductive 3.x by starter FreeRadicalSoftware (headed also by the Gobe CEO) back in August. One of the ideas was to make gobeProductive GPL (a beta Linux version already exists). Unfortunately, it seems that FreeRadicalSoftware might not succeed in this. Read more for Gobe’s and FreeRadical’s Scott Lindsey’s email in the Gobe user mailing list regarding the status, as it was sent by OSNews readers and GP3 users Chris Rupnik and Greg. Update: Gobe’s Tom Hoke comments here and Scott Lindsey comments here.
From: “Scott Lindsey” (wombat AT gobe DOT com)
To: (gobe-usertalk AT gobe DOT com)
Sent: Thursday, December 05, 2002 1:02 AM
Subject: [gobe-usertalk] FreeRadical
> What has happended to the Open sourcing of the code ??
At this time, Free Radical has been unable to raise the money necessary
to license the code from Gobe Software Inc.
Free Radical is effectively a nonstarter at this point.
Our Take: For those who would suggest something like Blender’s Paypal fund, I would argue that it would probably not work for GP3. We don’t know the actual amount needed, plus Blender was extremely multi-platform and more popular overall, making the raise of the needed money (~$100k) easier (and it still took them 4 months). Other such efforts, like the recent Pepper one (also more multi-platform than the current GP3), was only got to raise ~$500 USD from the needed $11k so the effort was canceled 2 weeks later. We should hope that FreeRadicalSoftware will evaluate such an option though.
Our Take 2 This could be a great opportunity for the 3 major Linux distros, or any other OS maker, to differentiate itself from the competition by stepping up and helping out with the buyout of this software (even if it means no open sourcing). Surely, we do have OpenOffice and KOffice, but then again, the Linux distro next door has it too. Hey Linux executives that I know you are reading OSNews, think about it. Differentiate yourself from the competition, give an edge on why should I try your distro and not your competitor’s. 😉
Understandable Pe was a tough sell, but a full productivity suite that handles (accurately or poorly) Office files should be kept alive. Without alternatives to Office we’re all worse off, and the lightweight nature of Productive seperated it from most of the other ones out there.
Other information from the list denotes that the GOBE webserver is only running because the ISP hasn’t shut it down. Phones are already dead, and you can no longer order new product.
The last article stated that FreeRadical had already bought the code for Gobe. Is this true? What money remains to be raised then?
Unfortunate news. Though I never used it, everything I have read says it was a great product.
Well at least we still have OpenOffice. Personally I think OO is without a doubt the best of the opensource Office suite. The fact that I can use it on both Linux and Windows is just great and a real plus.
I’ve actually installed it at a client recently. The secretary got a new computer and previously was using Office 95. On the new machine I installed OpenOffice to see if the client could save some money. Well its been two weeks and things are working out fine. The only initial complaint was that it was slow to open, but once I had them set up the quicklaunch feature they were quite happy. I didn’t really have to do any training since its pretty similar to MS Office, and the old .doc files are importing very well. Sometimes for complex .doc files they said they had some minor formatting issues, but a few key strokes usually moves the text or picture into place. Its only a small (20 PC) office, but from now on I’m told OpenOffice will be the new suite when new PC’s get ordered.
>What money remains to be raised then?
I think they need to pay out the Vulture Capitals. It seems that these guys (http://www.linuxglobalpartners.com) ask for more.. who knows…
I downloaded the trial for Windows and really liked it. As stated in an earlier post, the Gobe store is dead and I can’t find anyplace that sells it. Anyone have any ideas where else I can get a copy?
You can’t buy it anymore.
Never mind, OpenOffice will improve next year anyway
(the GUI will be rewritten)
>Never mind, OpenOffice will improve next year anyway
Which means that you will have that version in 2 years. Please.
OpenOffice.org is FAR different from Gobe Productive. Until you’ve seen how the integration between spreadhseets, graphics, images and documents work in Productive you’ll not understand that they’re two different beasts I guess. And the lightweight nature of Productive sets it apart as well.
Again, this is very sad and I’m surprised more people aren’t up in arms about it. Maybe it’s just me.
Once it was open source, I was planning on buying it.
Looks like things haven’t gone too well for the commercial developers who dumped BeOS in favour of the greener pastures of Windows/Linux. So who’s next? Beatware? Adamation?
Yeah, I’m sure the smart business decision would have been to stick with BeOS…
> Yeah, I’m sure the smart business decision would have been to stick with BeOS…
Yeah, right. Thank you for making me laugh.
This would really have been an excellent benefit to the community.
I’ll sell you my copy of Gobe 3 along with the free Linux coupon. Just put an email address soewhere so I can drop you a line.
Why doesn’t Palm or PalmSource just buy Gobe!
It’s not that expensive to them and could be very useful in the future if they choose to release a BeOS derived PalmDesktop OS.
>Why doesn’t Palm or PalmSource just buy Gobe!
YC, one more such (out of this world) word and you are banned.
PalmSource does not care about BeOS, nor will they ever. They did it for the engineers. It’s hard to understand, but some people just don’t give a sh*t about BeOS. I mean, I love it and all, and I’m praying that OBOS will be a success, but you must understand that PalmSource doesn’t.
didnt they mention earlier that they had already _bought_ the code and were just skimming through the code…
this is sad, another great Usable office suite goes bye bye.
wonder what the crossover plugin goes for these days
I completely agree with the idea. Companies should forget about having to stay pure GPL. Use the license that makes the most sense. It makes no sense to buy software and then release it for free to your competitors. Thats called leaching.
It is just a matter of looking at the numbers and forming partnerships if necessary.
According to those who have actually worked with the GoBe productive code, the big loss here seems to be the code itself: not just because it is a great office suite, but because it was so well written. The entire suite totals 12 megs with all of the extras, the applications themselves can fit into an 8 meg tar.gz file. Such a small, cleanly written application could easily be ported to even more operating systems and toolkits. Currently, the project supports Windows, Linux (via GTK), and BeOs. I’d assume Mac
and QT ports would be of great interest as well.
I’m SERIOUSLY interested in learning more of the details, and attempting to start a project to attempt to GPL this code! I assume it will involve paying the ‘ransom’ on the code, as was done with blender.
Please email me (cpulsifer at waveii.com) if you would be interested in helping with such a project, or have some specifics
Again, I do NOT know how feasable this is, I strongly believe it is worth looking into though.
I agree, Productive is different…that’s what I like about it. Light and integrated. I am very sad if it completley dies.
Maybe Yellowtab can step up to the plate — while I realize they don’t have deep pockets, it’s to badly needed by them to just ignore.
The commercial ‘nix vendor who grabs this and puts it into their basic lite weight desktop WILL have an edge over the competition. Heck, anyone who wants to dl Open Office could, but for home or most business-educational use, OO is overkill
>…one more such (out of this world) word…
Hmmm, is it sooo “out of this world”?
Apple has AppleWorks, MS has Works & Office, Sun has StarOffice…
PalmSource does own BeOS dead or alive! Gobe Productive is the premier Office Suite on BeOS so…
Time will tell.
>Apple has AppleWorks, MS has Works & Office, Sun has StarOffice…
Yes, but Palm is NOT an desktop/workstation OS company. It is an embedded systems one and they want to remain as such. WHEN the hell are you going to put that in your skull? You are repeating the same garbage for years now. WAKE UP.
PalmSource owns BeOS as a BYPRODUCT of their Be acquisition. BeOS was the last thing they wanted to buy when they got the Be IP.
>Time will tell.
Time has already spoken. The only one who didn’t listen to it, is you.
Xandros and Gobe are related through Linux Global Partners. Maybe Xandros will do it. 🙂
GoBe is too good to die. It must not! max is right, the code is so well written…and the integration between modules. If some company picks it up, they won’t be sorry. OpenOffice.org is like an elephant in a china store comapred to GoBe.
I thought Eugenia was taking a break from osnews? Oh wait, that’s in a few days! hooray!
Finally we will get some threads where people expressing their OPINION and something funny at that, will not be threatened with the *LAME* threat of a ban.
I hope yellowtab or someone else gets a hold of the source to GP3, BeOS needs it.
They can’t market this on Apple PCs since most Macs ship with Apple Works.
They can’t market this on Linux users since they expect everything free and have several good ones.
Ditto OS/2, Qnx, and BeOS. Too small user base.
Did they try to market this to small OEMs like I suggested? If so then what happened?
Actually, if you’re going to be a corporation, and want to release your software as opens ource, the GPL is probably the best license to do it with. Unless your competitors want to help you improve your software (by giving all their changes back to the community), they can’t touch your code. This is why XFS as a GPL product has worked so well. You can bet Sun and others would want to use some of that code in their own products, but it’s GPL so they can’t. While it is possible for people to steal GPL code, it almost never happens. The GPL comes with a community that actively looks for license violations. Even in minor products (Epson’s printer drivers, NVIDIA’s drivers, BeOS’s bootloader, etc) people have caught GPL violations and forced complience. On top of that, there are a lot of cases that the FSF persues that aren’t made public.
>I think they need to pay out the Vulture Capitals. It seems that these guys (http://www.linuxglobalpartners.com) ask for more.. who knows…
Wow, those guys have a stake in many potential superstars. Assuming FreeRadicalSoftware cannot proceed with the buyout, since Xandros already includes OpenOffice.org and Codeweaver’s CrossOver Plugin, where does that leave Gobe 3?
If this holding company doesn’t do something with it: Either fund its further development, or sell it before it becomes outdated, then they’re wasting money, so hopefully they won’t just sit on it.
Why doesn’t someone try it on a PDA or Tablet PC? From what I’ve read, the code is small and fast.
Gobe Productive was a great product, I agree, but I’d be interested to know what it had that something like KOffice doesn’t. KOffice is written in the same vien as Gobe Productive (and WordPerfect, RIP): component based and frame-oriented. It is probably missing some features that Productive had, but it’s actively developed, very lightweight, and rather polished. I’d be interested in hearing the opinion of someone who’s tried both.
PS> I know KOffice doesn’t run on Windows, but is there a serious market for anything besides Word on Windows anymore?
>will not be threatened with the *LAME* threat of a ban.
YC has a long history of hallucinations, he is not a random person. I know him for years and I have talked to him countless times.
I’ve never used the distro (it’s mostly an Asian one), but I think hancom does something like the ‘take 2’ option.
Anyone ever used it? Any good?
hallucinations? Like real ones, hearing voices and stuff or is it just the fact they he’s still holding out Palm?
YC, it’s funny to read your comments, but as my lesbian/Chinese history teacher once said, you can shit in one hand and wish in the other and see which one fills up faster.
She really did say that.
yc, you are an idiot of the forum, you should be put in a cage and poked with a “microsoft” stick and baited with BeOS meat.
seriously dude, get some medication or something, or better yet, get off the computer, there are girls out there, you know. maybe this will cure your pea-brain
Which means that you will have that version in 2 years. Please.
So, you’re proposing to spend a wad of cash on a codebase that needs a huge amount of work to come close to the already shipping OpenOffice suite? Please! I tried the Linux alpha/beta of GobeProductive, I was not impressed at all.
This is truly a shame. I purchased both Productive 2.0 for BeOS, as well as 3.0 for Windows. I knew most of the code was BeAPI, and the port was done with wrappers, so I was holding out for a BeOS version eventually. (Not to mention that Hoke did a lot of the dev work on PPC, which means BeOS/PPC version on the horizon for my BeBox (rev6).)
This is a loss. To have started both ClarisWorks and gobeProductive is wonderful, but it sucks to see them pass on.
It would be nice to know how much $ would be required to purchase the code and how much FreeRadical had scrounged together. I would most definately put $50 toward the open sourcing of GP3 … only if I could get my $50 back if it didn’t happen in the end.
And if Productive is not to be developed any longer … why not just release the binary for free to the public? It would at the very least help convince the OSS zealots to donate.
Finally we will get some threads where people expressing their OPINION and something funny at that, will not be threatened with the *LAME* threat of a ban.
We have no objection with you expressing you opinion, it’s how you express it that we object to. If you can express you opinion in a mature manner then you won’t be moded down.
hi, how r x-be dev. doing today, 12/6/02? how is beatware doing? how is adamation doing? does anyone rememer thunder munchkin or tave? what is be ceo jlg doing these days? i have no doubt be investors and vcs regret investing in be inc, but does jlg regret starting be inc? mr. red pill do know? how about u eucenia? i do recall some news people but i forget their names.
Beatware seems to still be around although they keep changing their flagship program and focus. Unlike some companies old Be folks may know of, they haven’t dumped all their old stuff.
Adamation looks dead to me. Their E-Store has been “temporarily closed” for a few months now.
JLG is the CEO of a company that makes network testing equipment.
Most of the other companies involved with BeOS were just one or two people who’ve gone on to other things. The main guy behind Mediapede left to work at Easel. fredlabs, if you have a really long memory, developed VirtualMac for the PowerPC BeOS incarnation–they went on to do a lot of the work on Final Cut Pro. Brad Hutchings, the Component X guy, makes a Mac program called “Bosco’s Foto Trimmer.” (It has the same “this is cute but not worth the money” rating for me that kept me from buying Component X, but that’s another story.)
>JLG is the CEO of a company that makes network testing equipment.
Are you talking about the job he had a few months ago? Because he left that job 2 months ago. I don’t think he works currently, but he is in the board of directors of a number of companies AFAIK.
Okay, JLG was the CEO of a company that makes network testing equipment. I hadn’t heard he’d left, although it wasn’t a company I heard much about in general.
It seemed like a particularly unexciting job for a guy with his resume. I’ll be curious to see if he eventually moves into something else eclectic and high-profile.
When companies die, why does they have to take thier good code with them? This is a step back for mankind..
What would it require to save GobeProductive?
>What would it require to save GobeProductive?
Money, what else? The source code is not entirely Gobe’s you see (if it was, we wouldn’t have this problem today). Some investors have a stake there, it seems.
…(even if it means no open sourcing). Surely, we do have OpenOffice and KOffice, but then again, the Linux distro next door has it too. Hey Linux executives that I know you are reading OSNews, think about it. Differentiate yourself from the competition, give an edge on why should I try your distro and not your competitor’s
That’s a scary thought. If you want to use proprietary software, stick to Windows. There is no justification of using/developing closed sourced apps in a GNU OS. If a distro wants to differeant themselves from the competition, then take an open source app and actually improve it. Throw money into development. Configure it to integrate seamlessly into the distro. Include features that users of your distro want/need. But, wait; those improvements may actually benefit the whole Linux community and not just their distro. Ah, but that’s the whole point of open source and indeed the ideal that is the GNU/Linux OS.
How much does Gobe want?
> There is no justification of using/developing closed sourced apps in a GNU OS.
Open source, closed minds.
> Throw money into development. Configure it to integrate seamlessly into the distro. Include features that users of your distro want/need.
You can do that with closed source software too.
> But, wait; those improvements may actually benefit the whole Linux community and not just their distro.
Now, THAT is the scary thought, not mine. Personally, if I had a company, I would not open source the key elements of my product that make it differentiate with the others. Open source has its place, but I would use OSS for all the levels of my product, even if the product might be based on Linux.
> How much does Gobe want?
– Open source, closed minds.
Not really. I just (and many others) liken using closed software in Linux a contradiction of beliefs.
– You can do that with closed source software too.
Just like Microsoft does with their Office suite?
– Now, THAT is the scary thought, not mine. Personally, if I had a company, I would not open source the key elements of my product that make it differentiate with the others. Open source has its place, but I would use OSS for all the levels of my product, even if the product might be based on Linux
I agree…IF all your interested in is to make money off the backs of others,(anyone that contributed a single GPL’d piece of code, art, etc.) it doesn’t seem readily apparent that it is possible to make money off of something that if distributed one time for a fee, can then, be redistributed freely. But that’s Linux. If you can’t play by the GPL, go play with the EULA and Windows.
I have my own ideas on ways to profit while staying in line with what the whole GNU/Linux idea is about. But that’s another longer story .
this just sucks. just when things are starting to look a little brighter for the BeOS community, they drop a bomb on us.
we probably don’t have the kind of money to buy it, and if a company buys it they probably won’t release a BeOS version.
is there any way we can win?
>Just like Microsoft does with their Office suite?
Excuse me, but I find nothing wrong with Office.
>IF all your interested in is to make money off the backs of others,(anyone that contributed a single GPL’d piece of code, art, etc.)
You are wrong. All the GPL code used on an OS would have of course to be GPL’ed back. But additional software one writes or buys (e.g. GP3) *doesn’t have* to be GPL.
>YC, it’s funny to read your comments, but as my lesbian/Chinese history teacher once said, you can shit in one hand and wish in the other and see which one fills up faster.
Nice saying, I’m going to remember that one. But, is your teacher being lesbian and Chinese somehow relevant here, or did you just feel the need to spout useless information?
Argh.. I was hoping that Gobe/OS X will be out soon… but now
How to import those gobe docs from my BeBox(x86) to Os X???
Anyone will write an import filter for OpenOffice???
no, she teaches lesbian and chinese history ;P
actually lesbian history was my major
I’d have to choose B Alex.
I’m somehow happy that it didn’t become GPLed…. I don’t see the point paying for something to be open sourced but not free, as was the case with Blender…
If you pay for it to be Free, then it’s obviously supposed to be MIT or BSD or something, but GPL? No thank you! Not in my Box.
The choice was between 2 bad options, letting the software die and letting it be GPLed… that’s a shame…
Fact is that the only reason why Linux is still alive now, is because of opensource. Wether it be because of the better quality that opensource tends to give you (osf) or the rights that it gives you as a user (fsf).
Once you introduce more and more closed source applications, it will be as dead as BeOS, OS/2, and all those others. If you want non-free closed-source, stay with Windows.
And the fact is that opensource not only saves money for the user, but also for the developer, who gets free documentation, free testing, free coders, free marketing, and so on.
Blender, Beos, Gobe Productive didn’t survive as closed source products. Their only chance is open-source.
Really, Take 2 is pretty stupid. “We will keep it closed source, but it’s such a good product, lot’s of people will pay for it!” Uuuuh, isn’t that pretty much the same business plan that Gobe had?
>>Just like Microsoft does with their Office suite?
>Excuse me, but I find nothing wrong with Office.
I can’t believe I just read that… what kind of system of thought are you using to come up with this conclusion?
Apart from the social and political problems this software has caused it has caused a ton of economic problems. Some of which are:
– Monopoly of the document format
– Stifling innovation in this area (example: Gobe dying)
– Causing hardware upgrades to run
– Requireing OS upgrades to run
– Forcing Apple to bend over
– Causing US Gov to waste $millions on lawsuite
– Not allowing people to have a choice in business
– Rediculous prices
– Tyranical license structure
As well, it is also a poorly designed mamouth of an application that:
– runs slowly
– requires a ton of memory
– has a poor user interface (hint: useful, but not usable)
– and does everything but nothing really well
Perhaps you’ve been using it too long to notice. I don’t know anyone that does to work and says “Gee, I’m so glad I use this software all day, it makes my life and job better”
At lease Gobe Productive had that claim… even though it was not feature complete by todays standards, it ran like a dream. Would it be a pig like Office eventually? Perhaps, but don’t tell me you can’t find anything wrong with Office… you’re not looking hard enough.
No Linux vendor will buy it when they have OpenOffice.org for free.
I insist that the best buyer of GP is PalmSource!
Stick around a few years and you will see quite a few great companies & technologies slip under. Then when the dust has settled and all is trully forgotten a new generation will come along, and some great spark will reinvent the same thing over if the idea is that great.
Even funnier when you try to tell these people, it was already done before and that they should take a look at what went before even if they never heard of it. Somehow it never quite comes off right 2nd time around unless the reinventer is even better than the old master.
Dude! Why would Palm buy an office program? That makes no sense at all. You can’t run gobe on a PDA, Gobe is small, but not that small.
Gee, I’m so glad I use this software all day, it makes my life and job better. I’m so glad I decided to switch from linux to windows. My productivity has increased dramatically. Sure, I had to pay for some software, but the saved time and reduced frustration made it worth every penny.
No, I’m not being sarcastic. My life has been a whole lot better since I gave open source the boot. The only thing I still use is Python.
If Xandros bought Productive and integrated it into their next release, it would EASILY be worth the price tag and make it a huge boon for desktop Linux. I can tell you I’d definitely fork out the cash for it if Productive were part of the distro.
>I thought Eugenia was taking a break from osnews? Oh wait, >that’s in a few days! hooray!
>Finally we will get some threads where people expressing >their OPINION and something funny at that, will not be >threatened with the *LAME* threat of a ban.
Looking forward to that. Its really annoying to read these threats in most of the longer discussions.
Since the Gobe site is pretty much dead and the phones are unplugged, how do we contact the people that need to be contacted to discover how much money needs to be raised? Any recommendations?
I don’t think it’s productive (no pun intended) to compare GoBe and Office to each other. Office is a bohemeth and that is true across the board (even though the Mac version doesn’t have Access). GoBe is like AppleWorks more than anything else.
And how is AppleWorks distributed? Well, you can buy it, of course, but it comes bundled with every consumer Mac. Most people who have and even use AppleWorks don’t realize what you can do with it. I belong to the AppleWorks User Group, which is world-wide, and not only receive their Journal, but have access to software libraries with thousands of templates, etc. Of course, it is true that education accounts for alot of this (I mean teachers who use Macs in schools). Still, it is amazing what you can do with it. It is perfect for schools, ordinary users, even advanced users and SOHO.
So, if you compare the situations of AppleWorks and GoBe, things are not looking too good for GoBe. One of the only real scenarios I can think of is to have a company buy it, bundle it (if it’s a distro that buys it) and do what Sun has done with Star Office > OpenOffice.org. If that happened, GoBe would have a fairly decent chance of no only surviving, but spreading. If you’ve never used the Be or Windows version of GoBe, you don’t know what a crime it would be for it to simply vanish.
YC’s comment made every bit as much sense as Our Take 2. Palm buying a word processor is just as unlikely as a Linux company Linux buying a word processor. Linux companies aren’t going to make any friends by including closed-source office suites with their distros. Did you see how people got riled up when RedHat packaged proprietary artwork? Did you see the way Linux users lashed out against Lindows? It really goes counter to the whole point of using Linux in the first place. Really, only Xandros has managed to escape a public flogging from the Linux community. Most Linux users just don’t want proprietary crap from their distro if they can avoid it. So tell me, how is suggesting that a Linux company buy Gobe any more thickheaded than Palm buying Gobe.
I say this because I’m tired of Eugenia’s flames on the message boards. I like coming here to read the discussions, but everytime I read an article containing a flame, I look up and see Eugenia’s name attached to it. Personally, I was happy when it was announced that she was leaving OSNews. I didn’t write anything mean amongst all those farewells in the announcement discussion because I don’t dislike her as a person and that’s a pretty lame way to vent your dissatisfaction. Still, I’m not getting my hopes up. Even though she’ll stop posting stories, I’m almost certain that Eugenia will continue trolling the messageboards here at OSNews. It’s part of some sort of deep-rooted psychological defect that she has. It’s something like the mentallity of the crazy woman that sits on her porch all afternoon so that she can yell at the passersby.
This sucks. I hate when someone offers a juicy steak and then takes it away again before I’ve had any. (or a big, yummy fresh salad, for you vegetarians)
While I don’t 100% disagree with your comments about Eugenia’s treatment of some posters here, I do have to say that her sensitivity to BeOS-related issues is understandable. I feel the same way. Whenever something positive started to happen with BeOS, something (usually something short-sighted and stupid) would eat it and kill the hopes. After a while, any positive commentary about BeOS would be met with sad skepticism. YC does have a tendency to be terminally hopeful in ways that are really beyond fantasy. I don’t think he should be banned for it, but I do get irritated by those comments too.
I had hoped that BeOS would help turn around this train wreck of a computer industry, and the knife keeps being turned in the gaping bleeding wound. Why invest so much emotion into something like this? I don’t know. I’ve loved technology since I first started to watch science fiction. As I grew up, I was terribly hurt to discover how completely opposite things are in reality compared to science fiction. Even in dystopic futuristic stories, technology often JUST WORKS. Or at least it once did. The way things are now, I hate computers, I hate hearing the latest buzzword nonsense and I feel “betrayed” by the expectation of “good things to come.”
Eugenia is not a flamer. As the moderator of this forum she has had to do the thankless task of trying to keep order in this forum. I was the moderator of a self help forum for many years, just up until recently, and one can imagine the sort of posts I had to make decisions about. After seven years of that, i had had enough. Eugenia modding down posts is a charitable thing in itself, rather than delete some of them altogether.
One could just pass over yc’s ever hopeful illusion about Palmsource suddenly coming out with BeOS 6 in silence. However, as she explained, this has been going on for years.
While I would not hold my breath for GP3 to be open sourced I would not find it impossible for a linux company to buy the GP3 code. Since Gobe had already made significant progress towards a linux port it would not be too much work to polish the code. The fact that every other linux distro is about the same would make it seem like a good idea to buy the GP3 code to make their distro different. This of course assumes that the price is right. That I think is probably the best hope for gobe at this point. Otherwise I think it is probably RIP…
Yes, it is incredibly proper to compare gobeProductive to AppleWorks, but please keep origins in mind when you do. What was AppleWorks before Apple acquired it? That’s right, ClarisWorks. And, who started and who the beginning (and most important) versions of ClarisWorks? That’s right, the same folks who started Gobe, and wrote Productive.
Productive really is the next step in integrated office suites brought to you by the people that revolutionized the concept of the integrated office suite. Not only that, though, but they were great folks. I remember hanging out in BeShare and other message boards and getting prompted for input from the developers for features and bug fixes, etc., to be put into the next version. This is not the type of thing that’s going to happen with either Microsoft Office, or AppleWorks.
This is more than a blow for anyone hoping to see an intuitive and awesome piece of productivity software lost on the aging BeOS (but 2.0.5 runs fine on my dual-66 BeBox), but rather a loss for the entire software community. I wish these guys well in whatever endeavour they head for next, because great things are sure to come from it.
Please excuse my english as it is not my primary language:
“BlueCurve” is not proprietary I believe it is GPLed to best my knowledge ( at least the graphics ). You cannot use the word “BlueCurve” in your tittle though since Redhat owns that but the graphics are free to use
checkout the following link as well youo can try FreeCurve which is the “BlueCurve” only for other distros.
Oh and Jace in agree with your second post .
[quote]unlikely as a Linux company Linux buying a word processor. Linux companies aren’t going to make any friends by including closed-source office suites with their distros.[/quote]
If a Linux company bought it is there any reason it would have to stay closed?
Rob, you’re absolutely right about the ClarisWorks/GoBe progression. GoBe cannot be let to die. The one thing about GoBe – and maybe someone knows why this is – is that they never had a database module like Claris/AppleWorks. I wonder why? This was always especialy interesting to me because, as far as I know, there were really no regular database programs for Be.
Jace: By email.
As for the people who will be happy when I leave, dudes, you have no freaking idea how much work I have put for this site, for you to enjoy. IT IS my baby. It is 100% MY baby. I AM OSNews, I am over it 24/7, taking care of it.
When I leave, no matter what some of writers might say or even the owner, I don’t see it getting updated as much, I don’t see it grow. This is what I believe, and I hope I am wrong. So when you say “yeah! eugenia is leaving”, you in fact say: “yeah! OSNews will die!” (and this is not called ego, it is called reality – prove me wrong).
As for being a flamer. I am not one. YC is a person I know since 1999. He is not a random person that I “threatened”. I know him, and I have talked to him a zillion times. Everyone I know (including some ex-Be engineers) were making fun of him over the years. I am trying to help him to stop making fool of himself. He doesn’t listen, you don’t listen. I don’t give a shit anymore. Do whatever the hell you want.
Seeing as how I broke the silence over on the mailing list, I’ll try to clarify things.
As has been noted, Gobe is shut down at this point. Gobe does have creditors and the only substantial asset it has is intellectual property (i.e., Gobe Productive).
Bruce Hammond and I spent a fair amount of effort trying to find a way to preserve the code base, ending up with the idea to start a new company (Free Radical) which would open source it and use it as a development platform for other products. We failed to bring in the necessary money to make that happen. So no, FR never actually purchased the source code. Free Radical never actually had any legal existence other than an informal partnership (anyone interested in the freeradicalsoftware.com domain? 🙂 Other deals have been in the works, but nothing has really come through. As for what price would be required to set GP free, that would be up to the board of directors and shareholders. I’d say probably a few hundred K.
After several months of unemployment and deciding I really didn’t want to become (primarily) a Windows programmer, I accepted a position at Apple, where Scott Holdaway and Carl Grice were already working (as well as a few ex-Be engineers too). Tom Hoke recently got a new job too. I’ll let him tell about it if he likes. So at this point, a big issue for any potential buyer would be the lack of engineers familar with the code.
Addressing other comments:
[/i]things haven’t gone too well for the commercial developers who dumped BeOS in favour of the greener pastures of Windows/Linux.[/i]
I think it’d be fair to say that Gobe never dumped BeOS. Gobe continued to sell and distribute BeOS after Be dumped it.
Why no DB? Resource constraints. Database also doesn’t fit as nicely into the frame-based world of GP, so it was less of a priority.
Why not release the binary for free? Because it has potential value and to do so would be fiscally irresponsible as a corporation which has to protect shareholder interests.
Version 3.0.4: there were a handful of bug fixes that we wanted to release as v3.0.4, but one outstanding printing bug delayed things until Gobe had laid off all employees. As an author of GP, I’d really like to see 3.0.4 get released. As a shareholder and ex-employee, I understand that it might not happen.
The Linux version: while demoable, it still had/has quite a ways to go, even to be alpha quality (all features can be exercised to some extent). I had started work on porting to GTK2, but if it were to be open-sourced, I certainly wouldn’t rule out the possibility of starting over with Qt — GTK made more sense to us when we started the port for a variety of reasons.
Porting back to BeOS: would be an interesting challenge. When we were trying to get the Windows version completed, and stopped maintaining BeOS builds, shortcuts were taken here and there (direct use of combo boxes, for example) that would have to be addressed.
Disclaimer: my comments are my own. I am not speaking in any official capacity for Gobe Software Inc. or any of its business partners.
I got the Beos and Windows version. I’m waiting for the Linux one (as i use this OS more and more everyday…)…
Well, i’m think i loose somethink… As you said, protect shareholder interests but it’s before customers… Can they give me back my money for this unsupported (closed source) product now ???? i don’t think so…
How many customers of the Windows version ? and the beos version ?? all of them (i think if they still use GP) would like improvements and bugs tracked.
Maybe I’m in the minority but I’m willing to chip in $50 as well to raise some money for the possibility of getting Gobe Open Sourced – as long as I can get it back if it doesn’t happen . Although I realise it might take a while for my investment, especially for a linux version, I really like it better than OpenOffice.
From the time I used the Windows demo (yes it was a limited amount of time), Gobe was much less bloated, faster and does only what I need it to do. Unfortunately, I had only found out about it this Summer otherwised I would have purchased it. A few weeks later, I read the unfortunate news here.
The spreadsheet was good enough to do what I needed as was the word processor. It’s really cool too since you can do everything – word processing, spread-sheet, presentation stuff w/o having to open up another window.
I don’t think it would make sense for any Linux distro to invest a few hundred K in Gobe just to get the source. Some of the distros are losing money or aren’t profitable right now. How can you justify such an expense to shareholders for the possibility of having an Office Suite ready in a few months to a year? Instead, adding Star Office for substantially less per boxed copy would get customers support from SUN.
Thanks Scott for keeping us all in the loop.
I would like to know who would be interested in having beunited.org take up a collection for purchasing the “BeOS only” source code from Gobe to keep GP alive on BeOS?
beunited.org is willing to do the same ‘Blender’ approach.
I must say I would be very sad to see all the code go to the great dusty archive in the sky. I bought two copies of BeOS and Gobe productive for both BeOS and windows. The only reason I have to regret these purchases is that I have seen what sould have been and I sure miss the water now the well has run dry. I did my best to convert many people to both Productive and BeOS, a few of my friends flirted with BeOS programming for a while but quickly gave up.
The attitude to Productive was – ‘Why learn a new program and interface when I can get MS Office from 1,000,000 different and some even legitimate sources’
I am happy to pay for programs that I feel are heading in the right direction, I also forked out for Opera because I think it’s an excellent product, well conceived and excellently coded.
I think Productive was just such a project. It even ran beautifully for me on windows, a fact which is remarkable taking into consideration that much of the BeOS API was ported to make it run.
Productive is a theoretical asset, but what good is a dead product to creditors and shareholders, it hasn’t been much good to those who put money in Be.
If the source was GPL’d, and gobe and it’s creditors maintained rights to packaed products derived from it and perhaps written manuals etc. I think the return could be greater that holding onto it in the hope that someone will buy it lock stock and barrel.
Best of Luck to all those at Gobe, I hope everything works out for you all.
I am a very satisfied customer (ex-customer?) and I would gladly donate a couple hundred to help keep Productive alive.
Too bad we can’t also take a collection to reward the coders of this excellent program. Maybe if we free it there’d be a mechanism for donating to the guys who wrote it.
beunited.org is asking everyone to submit a comment about donating for the release of the BeOS source code for Gobe.. please go over to:
and voice your desire to donate!
As I mentioned to some of the beunited guys – the more limited the license the less likely it would be that anyone (read shareholders/debtors) would complain/sue that we gave away IP. So perhaps there is some hope that beunited could convince what’s left of Gobe that a non-exclusive semi-closed source BeOS only license wouldn’t have to cost much and also wouldn’t take anything away from the IP value. Clearly open source in any form reduces the IP value – but if it was “closed” to a specific group that wouldn’t be the case… I don’t know – Personally I’d love for the source to be fully open – but like most of the original founders I don’t want to be sued personally for having done so.
Disclaimer: my comments are my own. I am not speaking in any official capacity for Gobe Software Inc. or any of its business partners. (nice disclaimer might as well use it too:)
i miss his articles on behive
He works at Berkeley. You can read his blog here: http://www.birdhouse.org/blog/
He also writes for O’Reilly these days.
If this pledge drive works, and the actual donations begin for beunited.org to purchase Gobe Productive, could you run a story on this so that we get more eyes on this?
I never knew what happened to the code of companies that vanished. Now that I know, I am disgusted. I think that GPLing the Gobe code is a must. What is an investor gonna do with dead software anyway? Just have it rot in the basement?
It is truely sad to see such a great product die a slow agonizing death. That said, I purchased Productive about a year ago and nothing has really happened to it.
There wasn’t much of a community, add-ons, or programming tips anywhere to be found. But, I really like it!
That said, I really like Productive. It is much easier to get quick, simple work done in a hurry with it. Letters are quick and simple (no paperclip!), spreadsheets work nicely (no news how to add my own stuff though), and page layout/imaging was simply awsome, as well as the ability to publish to word and PDF(awsome in a company environment)!
Geez, a week ago, I created a new template for gobeProductive and then let everyone on the mailing list know about it. That post lead to this entire discussion. Maybe I should create new templates me often! 😉
Anyway, I hope a solution can be found so that gobeProductive can live on. I have already made by pledge, (even though I am most interested in seeing the Windows version flourish). Keep the faith, people!