Subject: Re: Harlequin vs. Allegro
From: Erik Naggum <>
Date: 1998/06/18
Newsgroups: comp.lang.lisp
Message-ID: <>

* Zeno the Anonymous Poster
| There is a huge market of people such as myself who run 1-5 person
| programming/consulting shops and cater to businesses with 5-100
| employees.  Contrary to the opinions of the larger software vendors,
| Franz must have decided that there is no market for programming languages
| there, at least not for their version of Lisp, because the pricing and
| royalties put their product out of our reach.

  I'm in that market.  I don't have a problem with Franz Inc's pricing.
  I have several friends in similar positions as myself whose employers or
  project leaders appear to have little qualms about paying for a full
  license, either.  I'm somewhat dismayed to hear that we don't exist and
  that we constitute "no market", but I think this must go to show that
  your imagination is somewhat restricted to your own immediate conditions
  and that you appear to think that what you cannot imagine also cannot
  exist.  this is the same mental illness that afflicts Microsoft victims,
  who think their sorry condition extends to the whole of the universe.
  the very fortunate fact is that it doesn't.

  if, on the other hand, your supposed "huge market" can present itself to
  Franz Inc and be profitable for them, don't think for a minute that they
  wouldn't cater to it.  much to my dismay, they have already decided to
  cater to Microsoft victims with a 40% discount on the Professional
  Edition and a 25% discount on the Enterprise Edition, which I personally
  think is a disgrace -- I don't want to have to argue against using
  Microsoft's demented crudware and suffering their criminal conduct based
  on the price difference of the development system, and beancounters can
  be trusted to bring this issue up.  an Intel box can, however, run Linux
  and get away with a support license slightly more espensive than a
  Professional Edition license, but it still isn't great to see that people
  get rewarded by a company that should reward smart choices for making the
  really stupid choice that going for Microsoft is in the long run.

  my current client uses Franz Inc's ACL 5.0 for Linux offering and has
  purchased a service contract, and more licenses may come as this spreads
  to more systems.  the service contract for Linux is a little cheaper in
  the short run, but not in the longer run since it costs the same every
  year instead of just a maintenance fee, so the goal is to get onto a
  fully supported license once Franz Inc (hopefully) decides that Linux is
  worth supporting fully.  in any case, the cost of the license accounts
  for less than 5% of the budgeted project costs over its (minimum) 4-year
  life-time, and less than 10% of the development costs the first year.
  this seems to be fairly constant in my projects.

  I don't find Franz Inc's pricing to put _anything_ out of reach, neither
  for me nor for my clients -- on the contrary, Franz Inc's offerings have
  put some very interesting work _within_ reach for me and some fairly
  complex systems within reach of relatively small budgets for my clients.
  would this have happened regardless of their pricing and ability to make
  money and stay healthily in business?  I don't think so, and that's why
  I'm worrying about their subsidizing Microsoft users, too.  knowing what
  tremendous costs Microsoft puts over on software developers for their
  cruddy "operating systems", I have a hard time understanding the prudence
  of rewarding that market with huge discounts.  I'm sure those who have
  yet to understand what Microsoft does to the software industry appreciate
  the lower entrance costs, however.

-- is about my spam protection scheme and how
  to guarantee that you reach me.  in brief: if you reply to a news article
  of mine, be sure to include an In-Reply-To or References header with the
  message-ID of that message in it.  otherwise, you need to read that page.