Scott Church is the software strategist (cool title) for Digidesign, and has started the protools|blog, chock FULL of helpful hints, tips, and video tutorials for getting the most out of Pro Tools.
If you do any production work, I would HIGHLY recommend checking it out.
That said Scott wont publish a comment I left for him, so I thought I'd pick a (little) blog fight, LOL.
In a recent post of his, Scott put up a poll asking for user's opinion on software updates:
If Digidesign offered a paid update which only included small usability enhancements, bug fixes and performance improvements, would you buy it?The poll currently sits at 61.54% against (which I think is good), but since Scott wouldn't post my snarky response to the question I thought I would elaborate here.
Coming from a family of hardware and software engineers, I feel pretty strongly about this. Lately I've noticed a trend where it's perfectly acceptable to release products that aren't finished. There seems to be no marketplace consequence to delivering a product that is incomplete. Thanks to a lobster pot effect, it now seems most consumers expect that kinks will have to be worked out of the gadget they've already spent money on, and that there is no guarantee that the widget will ever completely function as promised (iPhone 3G and Vista I'm looking in your general direction).
What's sad is, we all seem to be fine with this.
Now, I will certainly pay for new functionality. Hell, I'll probably be first in line, but to start paying for optimizations and bug fixes, well that just doesn't sit well with me. Not only are we acknowledging that product QA isn't as high as it could be, but this almost feels like extortion to me: "Keep paying us, or your software wont work as well as it could".
A purchase is a contract (no really just try and read an EULA sometime). I give them money for a product. They give me a product that does what they say it does. Everybody is happy. I'm not giving them money for an idea of a product that isn't quite finished. If I'm spending money, I want a solid solution.
If any company were to seriously engage in this kind of "support" I would probably stop doing business with that company, or at least seriously start considering a competitor's product.
Whew, nice little rant there.
So again, if you use Pro Tools, then Scott's protools|blog is a little slice of incredible, and you really should check it out.
Just don't expect him to publish your comments (OOOOHHHHH DIS!!!!).