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awj
03-24-2008, 01:11 PM
Without prejudice, I've been reading the message board posts regarding the new run engine pricing and options. Some people refer to "closing the door", and I can't understand why. Alpha Software is like any other owner of intellectual property exercising their rights to protect their investment and future.

I, as a composer of music, completely understand. If I compose music, I've put a lot of heart & soul, and often money into it, and rightfully want people to pay me for each song sold, but as most of you know, lots and lots of music piracy exists out there - and unfortunately people copy MP3s, and "share" them with others to the point musicians say, why do I bother to make music at all? Aside from the fact, I enjoy creating music, I certainly don't want people to steal my efforts. Yet it happens millions of times everyday. I have a friend, wealthy in fact, him and his wife always "get" "free music" off the web, and they think nothing of it! And yet they can truly afford to buy that music - moreso than a lot of us!

The same goes for software development. People seem to be stuck in the paradigm of "free", and the intangibility of the 'digital stuff' makes it "OK" to abuse it. Most of some of these message board postings complain about the idea of having to fork out more dollars for the run engines for deployment of their Alpha Five applications to clients. Yes, understandably there are scenarios that warrant some flexibility, but I can see that Alpha Software strives diligently to accommodate those unique scenarios!

By the same token, these same developers, they wouldn't want others "making free copies" of their own A5 applications either, and to make it said I think a few are looking at the "splinter in someone else's eye, yet they ignore the "timber" in their own eye.

I go back to my music scenario of my wealthy friend, they say, "it's ok to download those MP3s, they are "free" he, says. I answer to him and say, then you're alright with it then if I go to your CD collection and just help myself? He looks at me funny when I say that.

In summary, I'm not trying to negate the legitimate concerns of various development scenarios here, just that the bottom line is that Alpha Software has invested a significant amount of time, effort, and of course a lot of money to create Platinum. I myself have developed commercial off the shelf type applications, but that's where the OEM Run engine comes in to play. I know that the staff at Alpha Software are always striving to be flexible, yet fair when it comes to pricing structures, and let's face it - they have a phenomenal product!

*** Keep in mind, sure there may be alternatives out there, but a lot of the Microsoft alternatives are pricey, have huge time costs, and definitely have steeper learning curves. Alpha Five delivers more on RAD than many, many alternatives out there, the Run Engine licensing should be welcomed - simply because now we can also protect our own intellectual investments in our A5 applications! Alpha Software is flexible, fair and diligent.

This message board was designed for courteous, legitimate & professional discussions, and yes we may not all agree with everything or everyone all of the time, but that's what makes us human.

- awj :)

DaveM
03-24-2008, 01:26 PM
Hello Andrew,

first, i don't have any of your mp3's or anybody else's and don't believe in it just like I don't use Alpha's stuff unless I paid for it.

unfortunately people copy MP3s, and "share
You worked for it and should be paid. Alpha worked for it and should be paid. How much and to what extent is in debate. We all want Alpha to exist and thrive.

Some of our discussions and thoughts may not affect you, but could severely affect us and Alpha a great deal.

the biggest problem right now is the runtime structure. that can affect me and a lot of others very badly.

awj
03-24-2008, 01:35 PM
Yes, understandably there are scenarios that warrant some flexibility, but I can see that Alpha Software strives diligently to accommodate those unique scenarios!

Hello Dave;

As mentioned, I don't belittle any concerns, but I know for a fact that as indicated above, Alpha Software is working hard to understand your issues, and ensure that we as developers are not tossed out of the loop in terms of our own development activities.

cheers, awj - :)

Alan Lee
03-24-2008, 01:40 PM
I have no problem purchasing a full copy of V9 and paying for the runtime to go with it. I feel Alpha is entitled to be compensated for their work on a fine product. Every worker is entitled to their wages! That is why we all work, to pay for our existents. I have no problem even paying more for V9 than previous versions. But, when I as a developer buy a runtime I should be able to distribute my applications with it. That is why I bought a runtime and what a runtime by definition is for.

awj
03-24-2008, 03:32 PM
I have no problem purchasing a full copy of V9 and paying for the runtime to go with it. I feel Alpha is entitled to be compensated for their work on a fine product. Every worker is entitled to their wages! That is why we all work, to pay for our existents. I have no problem even paying more for V9 than previous versions. But, when I as a developer buy a runtime I should be able to distribute my applications with it. That is why I bought a runtime and what a runtime by definition is for.

I understand your concerns, but I should point out that in the documentation for even the A5V8 (and previous) Runtime licensing, it clearly states:


The Alpha Five Version 8 runtimes allow for unlimited distribution per application ... If you are developing custom applications for various customers, then each customer is required to have their own runtime.


The keywords are "per application". Many developers were simply building many different applications, yet were using the same runtime copy across multiple applications. There is a difference. It's in the licensing agreements. Note also the indications for custom applications for different clients.

awj :)

Tom Mills
03-24-2008, 04:21 PM
And if they choose to enforce that for the future..... they stand to lose a great deal (if not most of) their client base.

I have no desire to steal any of Alpha's work. But if they price it too high (one runtime per application), they'll lose me.

NoeticCC
03-24-2008, 04:37 PM
And if they choose to enforce that for the future..... they stand to lose a great deal (if not most of) their client base.

I have no desire to steal any of Alpha's work. But if they price it too high (one runtime per application), they'll lose me.

I haven't seen or heard anything that would suggest such a thing, I was under the impression the wording in the RT explanation referred to custom apps for different customers than to limiting each RT to just one app.

awj
03-24-2008, 05:20 PM
And if they choose to enforce that for the future..... they stand to lose a great deal (if not most of) their client base.

I have no desire to steal any of Alpha's work. But if they price it too high (one runtime per application), they'll lose me.

Hi Tom;

Referring to "per application", that simply means (documentation on Alpha's site) if you have a commercial app, where say you sell 100 or more single-user copies, then in the case of A5V8, then one unlimited runtime applied. *See OEM Run Engine for Platinum, as Alpha accommodates this scenario with that product.

If you develop "Custom App A", for Client A, they need their runtime(s) purchased (whether 3, or 10 users etc.), and then if you have another Custom App B, for Client B, again they need their separate runtime(s) for that as well. If you had a package of 3 single user runtimes @ $249 (for example), and you provided the Custom App A to your Client A, you've likely charged him/her the fees associated with a custom App. Therefore, if you give them (or sell) one of the runtimes (if they need only 1 run engine), it really costs you only $83. for that (1) license for that particular client. In a custom app I developed, the cost was several $1,000s - so adding a runtime is really inconsequential, even when they upgrade to Platinum, the cost to the client will be low.

In the case of selling a packaged app online say, you sell 100 copies, and you've bought the OEM Run Engine license, it breaks down your unit cost to only $5.99 each! The more you sell, the cheaper the run engine. And yes, it's not supporting the SQL connectivity, but most "packaged" apps are standalone.

awj :)

DaveM
03-24-2008, 06:40 PM
Andrew,

Sell your 20 user runtime app online and what does it cost you for 100 copies?

By the way, it is not 20 users, it is 20 seats in v9. There is a huge difference.

IF you could get the price down to 20.00 per seat it would cost $40,000.00

lets see, if I sold the package for 400.00 each, it would cost the same as the runtime, so I would have to sell at 600.00 to not even break even with my other costs.

this is why I am being so stubborn! i don't think the marketing department thought this through.

awj
03-24-2008, 07:00 PM
Andrew,

Sell your 20 user runtime app online and what does it cost you for 100 copies?



I have no need to sell a 20-user runtime app online at this time. If you happen to have a 20-user app you want to sell online, feel free to talk to Alpha about this - it sounds like a different situation yet again.

I really think you should talk to Richard - I'm not sure you're quite understanding it.

awj :)

DaveM
03-24-2008, 07:03 PM
i have tlked to richard.

awj
03-24-2008, 07:07 PM
i have tlked to richard.

Sorry, not sure what else I can suggest.

awj

DaveM
03-24-2008, 07:22 PM
No problem!

Whatever happens, we must all remain as loyal as we can and be friends.

Sales told me when I finally got through to them that there would be NO unlimited runtime(Bret Johnson). that is when i really started working.

Well, I can't sell cars on here and have devoted almost 3 days to this try.

Probably get kicked off here before it is done, but there are many people out there that know nothing of this try or have a clue v9 is out.

The problem is, if you have one saying something, you have another 50 that just go away and never come back. Anything that causes this wait to end early is good for Alpha more than me by 1000 fold.

Tom Mills
03-24-2008, 07:27 PM
Andrew, there was no need to explain the runtime to me. I understand it perfectly.

Enough to know that it will severely hurt Alpha in the long run. All they have to do is make this OEM version serve SQL data and less than 20 concurrent users.

dbf's are quickly becoming obsolete in the database world. Small developers need to ability to create small, relatively inexpensive apps against Access and MYSQL (and other SQL databases).

If they don't sell us a runtime that can be used as needed for all small, multi-user applications we may develop, then slowly but surely, they are squeezing out their customer base in the hopes they land the big fish.

And I don't think they'll land the big fish.

awj
03-24-2008, 07:30 PM
Dave: I agree that probably patience is the best. Not sure about the "NO" Unlimited runtime though. I'm sure they will still go with that OEM Run Engine as it makes perfect sense - especially for those of us selling commercial applications to single-users online.

We'll wait and see what the verdict is I guess!

cheers,

awj :)

awj
03-24-2008, 07:35 PM
Andrew, there was no need to explain the runtime to me. I understand it perfectly.

Enough to know that it will severely hurt Alpha in the long run. All they have to do is make this OEM version serve SQL data and less than 20 concurrent users.

dbf's are quickly becoming obsolete in the database world. Small developers need to ability to create small, relatively inexpensive apps against Access and MYSQL (and other SQL databases).

If they don't sell us a runtime that can be used as needed for all small, multi-user applications we may develop, then slowly but surely, they are squeezing out their customer base in the hopes they land the big fish.

And I don't think they'll land the big fish.

Just trying to be helpful. I'd give it some time and see what the outcome is, I'm sure it will be fair when the dust settles! I'm still a big fan of Alpha Five, and enjoy working with this tool for development!

cheers, awj :)

NoeticCC
03-24-2008, 07:47 PM
Not sure about the "NO" Unlimited runtime though. I'm sure they will still go with that OEM Run Engine as it makes perfect sense - especially for those of us selling commercial applications to single-users online.


Indeed - it was in my view an oversight on Alpha's part not consider the posibility of multi user app sales needing to be distributed with trials etc.

I can see why, because in most cases multi user apps are not just given away for trial, and many customers would not necessarily be able to set up your multi user apps without your involvement.

Additionally when you think about it, if you want to give out trials then a single user version would be VERY easy to set up for your trials, and that would be sorted with the OEM RT.

But it does look like they are trying to come up with more ideas, and willing to listen. So stay patient :)

Richard Rabins
03-24-2008, 08:13 PM
I haven't seen or heard anything that would suggest such a thing, I was under the impression the wording in the RT explanation referred to custom apps for different customers than to limiting each RT to just one app.


you are correct Andrea!

Richard Rabins
03-24-2008, 08:18 PM
i have tlked to richard.

Dave you and i have talked - before any v9 pricing/licensing was outlined

Guys - as i have said - we are dilligently working on a plan that i believe will be responsive to the concerns we have heard and will be affordable

just a little patience please

DaveM
03-24-2008, 08:36 PM
That is what I was waiting to hear.

Thank you!

Dermot
03-24-2008, 08:52 PM
Without prejudice, I've been reading the message board posts regarding the new run engine pricing and options. Some people refer to "closing the door", and I can't understand why. Alpha Software is like any other owner of intellectual property exercising their rights to protect their investment and future.

I, as a composer of music, completely understand. If I compose music, I've put a lot of heart & soul, and often money into it, and rightfully want people to pay me for each song sold, but as most of you know, lots and lots of music piracy exists out there - and unfortunately people copy MP3s, and "share" them with others to the point musicians say, why do I bother to make music at all? Aside from the fact, I enjoy creating music, I certainly don't want people to steal my efforts. Yet it happens millions of times everyday. I have a friend, wealthy in fact, him and his wife always "get" "free music" off the web, and they think nothing of it! And yet they can truly afford to buy that music - moreso than a lot of us!

The same goes for software development. People seem to be stuck in the paradigm of "free", and the intangibility of the 'digital stuff' makes it "OK" to abuse it. Most of some of these message board postings complain about the idea of having to fork out more dollars for the run engines for deployment of their Alpha Five applications to clients. Yes, understandably there are scenarios that warrant some flexibility, but I can see that Alpha Software strives diligently to accommodate those unique scenarios!

By the same token, these same developers, they wouldn't want others "making free copies" of their own A5 applications either, and to make it said I think a few are looking at the "splinter in someone else's eye, yet they ignore the "timber" in their own eye.

I go back to my music scenario of my wealthy friend, they say, "it's ok to download those MP3s, they are "free" he, says. I answer to him and say, then you're alright with it then if I go to your CD collection and just help myself? He looks at me funny when I say that.

In summary, I'm not trying to negate the legitimate concerns of various development scenarios here, just that the bottom line is that Alpha Software has invested a significant amount of time, effort, and of course a lot of money to create Platinum. I myself have developed commercial off the shelf type applications, but that's where the OEM Run engine comes in to play. I know that the staff at Alpha Software are always striving to be flexible, yet fair when it comes to pricing structures, and let's face it - they have a phenomenal product!

*** Keep in mind, sure there may be alternatives out there, but a lot of the Microsoft alternatives are pricey, have huge time costs, and definitely have steeper learning curves. Alpha Five delivers more on RAD than many, many alternatives out there, the Run Engine licensing should be welcomed - simply because now we can also protect our own intellectual investments in our A5 applications! Alpha Software is flexible, fair and diligent.

This message board was designed for courteous, legitimate & professional discussions, and yes we may not all agree with everything or everyone all of the time, but that's what makes us human.

- awj :)

This is not the same as music at all. Alpha Five is a tool that you can create an application with. You buy it from Alpha. No one is saying it should be free and no one is talking about people sharing it. They deserve to be well compensated for their hard work. No one is denying that. It is the runtime that people have issue with. Creating an application is pretty useless if you can't run it on the end users computer. My users should not have to purchase or license something else to make my app run or I should not have to purchase something new everytime I create an app. If I purchase the developer version of Alpha then I should have the right to deploy my apps how I want without extra cost. This is how all development tools I know of work and I use several of them. I don't care if it is a single user app or multi-user, that's for me to worry about and license how I see fit.

Access has been able work with backend databses for 10 years. Build forms reports, everything as if they were local tables. You can distribute your completed app how you want. You don't have to pay MS extra money because you are creating a multi-user app. The end user has to have the correct user license for the backend database of course. Trying to control this from the front end is a waste of time when there are plenty of tools out there that you can build the front end in without any runtime licensing. These days you can whip up a front end in PHP or ASP very quickly and run it from a web browser with the only licensing/ user control being that of the database server.

If I have to pay for a new runtime each time I create a new app then that means the harder I work the more I have to pay Alpha but it costs them no more than if I was a guy using it for a hobby. They don't support my end users.

Stick to creating and improving your excellent tool for developers and let the developers run their business how they want.

csda1
03-24-2008, 09:13 PM
...You don't have to pay MS extra money because you are creating a multi-user app....
Actually you do when you exceed the number of users permitted on the server. Gee they sell both sides, so they are making money at both ends


These days you can whip up a front end in PHP or ASP very quickly and run it from a web browser with the only licensing/ user control being that of the database server.
I don't think "whip up" is the correct term when compared to Alpha. Alpha generates the web application a whole lot faster than PHP or ASP, and is more changeable as the business paradigm changes. That's real value added. On the other hand, the Web server has not been the issue in the thread


If I have to pay for a new runtime each time I create a new app then that means the harder I work the more I have to pay Alpha but it costs them no more than if I was a guy using it for a hobby.
That's a kind of irrelavant. They are entitled to compensation. They need to make sure it's worthwhile to you, but their model does not need to conform to Microsoft's or anyone else's, but at the end of the day, it must be a win situation for the developer and end-user.


They don't support my end users.
True, but then they are not taking a slice of those support dollars either.

But why not just wait a bit and see what they come up with? Alpha has taken the comments to heart (never saw Microsoft do that!), and I'm sure are trying to come up with a workable solution.

DaveM
03-24-2008, 09:39 PM
Ira,


never saw Microsoft do that

Microsoft did in the early days and I still think that is part of why they got so big. They also stepped on a lot of corporations and others to get there. They still do step when and where they need to.

Problem now is they are the guide to follow or you can get very lost.


Actually you do when you exceed the number of users permitted on the server. Talking about user count for MS server

This goes for alpha users too. New word is they are relaxing some of the node counts in certain areas.

I am actually sounding pro ms and I am not. I am pro - Alpha

Dermot
03-24-2008, 11:01 PM
Actually you do when you exceed the number of users permitted on the server. Gee they sell both sides, so they are making money at both ends.
Actually I never mentioned MS SQL Server. I was talking about any backend databse and I did state clearly that the user count is controled by the database server. I used Access as an example.


I don't think "whip up" is the correct term when compared to Alpha. Alpha generates the web application a whole lot faster than PHP or ASP, and is more changeable as the business paradigm changes. That's real value added. On the other hand, the Web server has not been the issue in the thread.
I was not talking about WAS or building web apps in Alpha, never mentioned it. I was merley saying there are lots of other ways of building frontends that have no restictions other than those imnposed by the back end server. And yes depending on what you are doing and with the right tool you can whip up something very quicly.


That's a kind of irrelavant. They are entitled to compensation. They need to make sure it's worthwhile to you, but their model does not need to conform to Microsoft's or anyone else's, but at the end of the day, it must be a win situation for the developer and end-user.

It may not be relavent to you but it is to me, very relavent.


True, but then they are not taking a slice of those support dollars either..
It's still money out of my pocket regardless of where it comes from.


But why not just wait a bit and see what they come up with? Alpha has taken the comments to heart (never saw Microsoft do that!), and I'm sure are trying to come up with a workable solution.
Just replying to the original post and voicing my concerns, nothing wrong with that. I never said I was an MS fan. There are a lot of excellent alternative, non MS tools out there. If Alpha wants to keep the developers they have and win over new ones they have to think about that. If no one else is charging for runtimes then they are going to have a tough time.

forskare
03-24-2008, 11:10 PM
I've been reading the threads and thought I'd add my perspective. My guess is most of Alpha's base is not into SQL, WAS or large networks but desktop applications for themselves, single clients or small networks.

Yes, Alpha must make a profit but they also MUST be competitive. If the past is any indication, Richard et al will come through. Perhaps it will be structured and priced like v8. That should keep all happy. As far as RT is concerned, a large competitor does it this way, albeit with limitations, it is FREE. Now, that would really increase the customer base, would it not.

I have emailed Richard with some links to the large competitor's database and suffice it to say, v9 is not competitively priced or structured. I am glad Richard and Alpha are working on this and time will tell the outcome. I doubt there is another company that provides the personal attention we've come to enjoy and quite frankly, has spoiled us. Leaving Alpha after 20+ years would be like a death in the family. If the pricing is high, I will weigh the v9 features and compare v9 to other makes and models. I'll also consider Alpha's "personal attention and this message board. There is a price for those as well.

kenn

NoeticCC
03-25-2008, 04:16 AM
Talking about user count for MS server

This goes for alpha users too. New word is they are relaxing some of the node counts in certain areas.


Ah but with V9 you can put an SQL DB on a Unix box and connect from your workstations directly to the DB server so Windows server licensing falls out of the cost equation.

Marcel Kollenaar
11-01-2008, 07:30 PM
Without prejudice, I've been reading the message board posts regarding the new run engine pricing and options. Some people refer to "closing the door", and I can't understand why. Alpha Software is like any other owner of intellectual property exercising their rights to protect their investment and future.

I, as a composer of music, completely understand. [...]

This message board was designed for courteous, legitimate & professional discussions, and yes we may not all agree with everything or everyone all of the time, but that's what makes us human.

- awj :)

I will put it to the extreme: http://www.logosfoundation.org/copyleft/copyrigh.html#Paper :D

Richard Rabins
11-01-2008, 07:50 PM
There was a new post to this old thread

This issue was dealt with when we introduced a very liberal unlimited runtime for Alpha Five (for both dbf and SQL backend databases)

please check out

http://www.imakenews.com/alphasoftware/index000286990.cfm

thanks

PowerBASIC
11-28-2008, 03:17 AM
The pricing is very confusing:
http://www.alphasoftware.com/shop/alphafive/v9/platinum_newuser.asp

Does unlimited also mean unlimited seats?

Tom Cone Jr
11-29-2008, 07:38 AM
Maybe this will help:

http://www.alphasoftware.com/shop/alphafive/v9/run_engines.asp

michaelwpayton
11-29-2008, 10:51 AM
The pricing is very confusing:
http://www.alphasoftware.com/shop/alphafive/v9/platinum_newuser.asp

Does unlimited also mean unlimited seats?

Yes, if you purchase this https://www.alphasoftware.com/shop/itemdesc.asp?PRODID=715 product... the unlimited license gives you the right to distribute your application to an unlimited number of customers with as many "seats," for each customer, as your want. "Number of seats," per customer/site that YOU license your app to is up to you, the developer.

This option costs you $700... which is an extremely fair/competitive price and it provides the ultimate in flexibility for developers... (cheers Alpha, Richard, et al)

Doug Page
11-29-2008, 02:52 PM
The link Tom gave is a little dated as I do not believe it takes into account the "Unlimited Distribution License" that was introduced some time ago. After researching for a reply to this thread, I was surprised to see that this new license didn't use the word runtime or run-engine. Anyways, the announcement and details are here:

http://www.imakenews.com/alphasoftware/index000286990.cfm

In summary:

Features of the Unlimited Distribution License


Create as many applications as you need. Distribute as many copies as you need.
Works with both .DBF based and SQL based applications (such as SQL Server, MySQL, Oracle, Postgres, Access and more)
Includes software for building your own custom installation program.
Restricts users from editing (and possibly breaking) your application.
Allows users to create and edit their own reports, labels and letters (if you wish to allow them).
Create your own custom splash screen that appears when the software starts
Everything you need to distribute your Alpha Five applications, without paying royalties to Alpha Software.
Ideal for creating demo or trial versions of your commercial software.