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Re: How can Borland make from with Kylix?


2005-08-20 05:48:43 PM
kylix2
Robby Tanner wrote:
..
Quote

Furthermore, his solution is doomed. Much like the "spin-off Kylix to a
community" solution that's being advocated in this thread, I don't see how
..
Perhaps it is doomed, but from what we know Kylix seems 'doomed'
already, so what's the difference? At least my proposal could keep the
product alive for the developers who have invested time and money in it
(and know it's potential). Borland should make a profit from it also
(way off the IRR mark of course, but at least there could be a positive
revenue stream comin from it)
Do you have an alternative proposal?
It's only a accademic discussion anyways <g>
siegs
 
 

Re:Re: How can Borland make from with Kylix?

On 2005-08-19, Robby Tanner < XXXX@XXXXX.COM >wrote:
Quote
>While true, this doesn't have to be proved up front. Risk investments in
>new
>markets are not limited by this. (as Microsoft shows _clearly_ with XBOX)

You do have to make a case up front (as stated) to "show how Borland will
make money with this".
I can't make such case even for D2006.
Quote
>>something that at best might make high six figures and might show a
>>profitability of low six figures. That is not a product Borland is
>>interested in.
>
>There _is_ something as an strategic investment btw. Not all lines need
>to make money, as long as they contribute to the overall revenue.

Again, show how the strategic investment benefits Borland's long-term
profitability.
Again, I can't without confidential data. I'm not Borland's accountant.
 

Re:Re: How can Borland make from with Kylix?

Marco van de Voort < XXXX@XXXXX.COM >wrote in
Quote

It will have to do something to offset the waning interest in Delphi.

Is your opinion that there is a "waning interest in Delphi" based on any
factual evidence, or just your impression from the chatter on these
newsgroups?
My latest understanding, which is admittedly superficial, is that the sales
of Delphi have continued to increase each year. Do you have facts to the
contrary?
 

{smallsort}

Re:Re: How can Borland make from with Kylix?

On 2005-08-20, Larry Drews < XXXX@XXXXX.COM >wrote:
Quote
Marco van de Voort < XXXX@XXXXX.COM >wrote in
news: XXXX@XXXXX.COM :

>It will have to do something to offset the waning interest in Delphi.

Is your opinion that there is a "waning interest in Delphi" based on any
factual evidence, or just your impression from the chatter on these
newsgroups?

My latest understanding, which is admittedly superficial, is that the sales
of Delphi have continued to increase each year. Do you have facts to the
contrary?
My indicators are:
- bookshelf space in both online and physical bookstores
- job ads.
- People working in the Delphi space.
This is not perfect, specially the third one is dangerous.
I'd be interested where I can find the reference for your view. Were they
really in numbers or in (monetary turnover)? Since that would be a bit
dangerous due to the severe pricehikes in the last few years.
 

Re:Re: How can Borland make from with Kylix?

On 2005-08-16, Andreas Hausladen < XXXX@XXXXX.COM >wrote:
Quote
Marco van de Voort wrote:

>You can submit patches and bugs now too. And get them released. Just give
>them to Andreas. So while the handling will simplify somewhat, I don't
>think a GPL model will be significantly different from the current
>situation.

It would be significanty different because I would no more contribute to a
GPL'ed CLX. That's the reason why I do not support FreeCLX with my
patches. And the members of the 'Kylix Community Project' are also not
interested in a GPL'ed CLX. They want to make money with closed code.
I mean GPL to work under as a public group. And then use no-nonsense to
compile your own commercial efforts.
However that means one needs some system to avoid that person A can't use
person's B GPL'ed enhancements. Typical is signing a commercial license by
each contributor (above a certain threshold, depending on your lawyers
opinions) to a third party, and Borland is obvious in this case.
 

Re:Re: How can Borland make from with Kylix?

Marco van de Voort < XXXX@XXXXX.COM >wrote in
Quote

I'd be interested where I can find the reference for your view. Were
they really in numbers or in (monetary turnover)? Since that would be
a bit dangerous due to the severe pricehikes in the last few years.
Statements by John Kaster, and others from Borland. Annual and quarterly
financial reports filed by Borland with the Securities and Exchange
Commision.
I have been monitoring DICE for the last year. Delphi positions/contracts
have risen steadily from 100 for the last 30 days to 200 for the last 30
days. That says to me that demand has increased 100% in one year!
Participation in the Borland non-tech newsgroup has steadily increased
during the last year. I don't have any hard numbers, but the increase is
perceptible.
I have been employed steadily as a Delphi programmer for the last 10 years.
All of these indicate to me that Delphi is healthy. That doesn't mean that
I wouldn't like to see Delphi become even more popular, but it seems to be
doing ok.
 

Re:Re: How can Borland make from with Kylix?

Quote
>This is one thing I completely fail to understand. Why should you drop
>something
>because you can make more money on something else? Why not do BOTH?

It's called Internal Rate of Return (IRR). A corporation establishes a
minimum return on investment (ROI) and anything that fails to meet the
criteria is cut in order to invest the limited capitol in other avenues that
are more likely to meet the IRR.
Ok. So this is established business practice. Still doesn't make sense, though.
If you know that there is something that doesn't need any more investment (initial
investments into Kylix all are done already), but only little resources to be
kept alive, and the revenue generated by this is larger than that permanent cost,
and you also know that other product lines are benefitting from this... not
continuing Kylix still looks foolish.
Quote
>Looking at Kylix, a single full-time developer would be enough of an
>investment
>for Borland to keep Kylix alive and the revenue stream coming. As small as
>the
>current Kylix customer base might be, they'd still invest more than enough
>money
>to pay for that developer.

That's speculation without analysis. I'm sure the accounting types at
Borland have better data wrt to that type of solution.
Everything is speculation. And I know my speculation is right. Because I'm a
developer with lots of Kylix and Linux insight, and know how much work is involved.
This plus that the size of the team that initially developed Kylix in the first place
is known.
And regarding accounting types: You assume that Borland has a proper management. You
assume that Borland has business plans. This is not my impression. This is not the
impression of the community. And that's quite easy to see.
Just have a look at the C++Builder debacle. Borland has lost the majority of it's
C++Builder customer base, the product was declared dead by the community, next to all
third-party vendors went elsewhere, and Borland didn't respond to inquiries by their
customers for ages (the "Open letter"). Borlands C++ development team quite clearly
said they don't know if they have a future or will be laid off. And then one day
Borland decided to release a new version of C++Builder, integrated into Dexter.
Sorry, but if Borland really had a management, accounting or a business plan, then
they would also have had a road map. They could have announced that there are
future plans for C++Builder, keep the customers etc.
This is not the case. Borland does not KNOW if there ever will be a new Kylix version.
Borland does not KNOW if they ever will produce a Win64 compiler.
And yeah, that's speculation and just my personal impression, but somehow it quite
exactly reflects the reality ;)
Quote
>>Name a single public company that continues with a product that loses
>>money and
>>has a declining revenue stream.

>Kylix having a declining revenue stream is enterily Borlands fault. The
>market has
>improved a lot since Kylix was released. Usage of Linux servers has grown
>rapidly
>during the last years, and Linux on the Desktop these days also is much
>more common
>than it was a few years ago.

>I know one thing for sure: There currently are>500 developers using
>CrossKylix
>alone, and there a lots of Fortune500 companies in that list. The number of
>"plain"
>Kylix users will be much higher than that.

First, your statement does not address the challenge. Second, Borland will
have stats on how often Kylix is downloaded and how many requests it
receives for pricing/quotes.
No. Borland does not have these stats. Kylix was bundled with Delphi 7, so
nobody knows how mamy of Delphi 7 sales are due to customers wanting to do
Cross-platform work. I also HIGHLY doubt that Borland monitors the number of
product downloads from it's FTP.
The Borland online shop also is outsourced, and does not even sell Kylix anymore.
And finally, we also know that there is exactly zero communication with
worldwide Borland offices and their Kylix sales. I know that Borland Brazil is
completely failing to tell Borland USA that their customers demand a new Kylix 4
version and Kylix 3 sales have been great. I know that Borland Germany has
zero communication regarding Kylix with Borland USA.
I'm sorry to say this, but I think you simply have very wrong impressions on
how Borland internally works. They have a few very great and talented workers
in the "lower" departements. But the whole middle management is a chaotic
mess. If you care, try to find out who the product managers of the Delphi, Kylix
and C++Builder product lines were during the last years.
Quote
If it's so obvious, I suggest that the proponents get together and submit a
business plan to Borland. If the evidence is that compelling then the
company would be foolish not to look at it.
Borland management IS foolish. Heck, have you been living under a rock? Go over
to delphi.non-technical or the various blogs and have a look how Borland management
is right now shooting themselves in their own feet once again.
I'm a Borland lover, I'm a Borland Technology Partner, and I love working together
with the brilliant developer individuals at Borland. But I'm not so blind to
think that there is something like proper management at Borland.
Simon
 

Re:Re: How can Borland make from with Kylix?

"Marco van de Voort" < XXXX@XXXXX.COM >wrote in message
Quote
On 2005-08-19, Robby Tanner < XXXX@XXXXX.COM >wrote:
>>
>>Did D8 (the initial for pay .NET project) btw make money overall, if you
>>include everything .NET related, so including the development of the D7
>>cmdline compiler? I doubt it. Otherwise there shouldn't have been a
>>.NET
>>in
>>D2005 according to your reasoning, since .NET would be moving money.
>>However it is logical even if D8 was not highly profitable that D2005
>>would
>>have .NET support. Why? Strategic.
>
>Compare:
>
>A single release of D8 to compare to three releases of Kylix? Apples to
>oranges?

Apples and oranges, certainly, since .NET is probably _WAY_ more expensive
than the three. Reworking the entire codegenerator alone. Brr.
I was referring only to the comparison of one release versus three release
of another.
 

Re:Re: How can Borland make from with Kylix?

"Marco van de Voort" < XXXX@XXXXX.COM >wrote in message
Quote
On 2005-08-19, Robby Tanner < XXXX@XXXXX.COM >wrote:
>There is some problem though. The software would get tainted by code
>from
>>others. For minor patches (bugfixes) this is not a real problem, but for
>>significant code contributions code it is.
>>
>>However this is not surmountable, even GNU does this. (requires major
>>contributors to sign a license to GNU, and eula like clauses like "when
>>you
>>submit code to... you agree to ...). I'm sure Borland lawyers could work
>>out a decent formulation.
>
>The pivotal question remains, "what is their incentive to do so?".
>
>It would certainly benefit we developers, but the original challenge has
>yet
>to be answered. What does Borland have to gain?

It will have to do something to offset the waning interest in Delphi. And
I
think that the constant narrowing (or better, keeping narrow) of the
Delphi
platform is one of the reasons:
Speculation: 1) that Delphi is waning and 2) that giving away Kylix will
somehow prop that up.
Quote
- Kylix is dead.
- Nobody even heard of a native 64-bit compiler coming.
- No native PDA compilers
- No .NET PDA yet.
- No Mac.
- No .NET 64-bit (since requires .NET 2, admitted this goes for MS too,
but MS has kits available for free in the field to mere mortals)

So what is your prefered course? Continue narrowing in on .NET till
Microsofts natural advantages as original implementor, and its sheer size
kill
Borland?
I don't have a plan or solution. I am not trying to debate one or pretend
that I am offering one either. I am pointing out that speculation in a
discussion group is not the same as presenting a business case. In looking
for a solution one must be realistic about the perspective of all parties
involved. In this case. Borland wrote Kylix and essentially holds all the
cards with respect to it's future. Therefore, it is incumbent on those of
us who would like to see a community effort to understand their perspective.
For the most part, all I've seen is concocting some pseudo-benefit to the
company, which is not going to convince to release Kylix.
Quote
Otherwise, they will need to _make_ {*word*76}y new products. And take risks.
Correction, "take [calculated] risks" and the majority of what has been
discussed in this thread is a long way from a Cost-Benefit Analysis, SWOT
analysis or Threat-Risk Analysis or any other form of study that
corporations undergo when determing what direction to move in.
Rob
 

Re:Re: How can Borland make from with Kylix?

"siegfriedn" <sniedinger@yahoodotcodotuk>wrote in message
Quote
Robby Tanner wrote:
>
>
>That's the nature of business. Not only does their have to be a return
>on investment, there is a minimum allowable return. Even profitable
>ventures can be s{*word*99}ped for not making a high enough profit.
>

Hi Rob,

That makes things very complex..
For you maybe, not for investors. If I'm under my profit margin in an area,
I leave it for greener pastures. It's no different then shuffling
investments in a portfolio really. If it were your retirement fund, you'd
be going for the biggest margin you could find. Why should it be any
different? A corporation's whole reason for being is to generate revenue
for the shareholders and maximize profit.
Quote
should I wait until a product is achieving the IRR for a company? If
everyone thinks like that they won't sell anything :( Was it a mistake to
trust Borland with Kylix? Perhaps we should insist on a proper roadmap
before investing?
You can base your purchasing decisions on whatever criteria you deem fit.
I'm certainly in no position to offer suggestions. It's your money after
all.
Quote
One also has to take into condideration what is the cost to Borland of
putting Kylix in 'stacis'? The cost of the lack of communicating with
customers - when was the last time a Borland employee was in this
newsgroup to reassure their customers?
I would like to see the variables the money heads at Borland used to
calculate the IRR for Kylix. <g>
Typically, IRR is not based on a product line, it is a constant for a
corporation, moreso with ones that are publicly traded.
Quote
Hence my attempts here to help Borland find a solution for the Kylix
dillema. At least the product will move forward at a very low cost to
Borland.
And kudos to you for that. I'm not anti-Kylix by any stretch. I still
remember how e{*word*277}d I was at the concept of the CLX. By providing the
information I do, I am also hoping to help the pro-Kylix intiative in
general make a good argument for getting us support and enhancements. It's
just not going to happen by ignoring the reality of Borland's business
requirements or how financial decisions are arrived at by corporations in
general.
Cheers,
Rob
 

Re:Re: How can Borland make from with Kylix?

"siegfriedn" <sniedinger@yahoodotcodotuk>wrote in message
Quote
Robby Tanner wrote:
>>Kylix and Delphi same for me...
>>I cant understand that if Delphi is a outstanding, preferable, profitable
>>tool in the market, why Kylix not?
>
>
>Windows and Linux are more than just different O/S's, they are different
>cultures. Linux-folk are used to finding and building tools and have a
>lot of access to different tools as well. WIndows development was
>revolutionized with VB and Delphi whereas it is already fairly well
>established for the Linux types. Also, Linux programmers are typically
>looking for C/C++ solutions because that's what they're already using.
>

Yes, Windows and Linux are completely different cultures, Within Linux
there are also many different cultures. The 'Linux-folk' you are refering
to will never use Kylix unless it is licensed under the GPL- they don't
need it either.
Exactly and regrettably, that's the majority of Linux developers and they're
entrenched.
Quote
Again to Borland - if you thought you targeted the Linux community as a
whole with Kylix you made a BIG mistake. Kylix will never be the
alternative for GCC for example nor does it need to be.
The correct target for Kylix are developers (initially mostly from the
Delphi community) who see Linux as business platform the way Delphi
deveolpers see Windows as a business platform. Kylix is a business tool
for Linux the same as Delphi is for Windows.
Yes, there are not millions of these developers around, but they will
come, just make sure you have a stable upto date product and market the
damn thing as a RAD Linux business tool!
I think they tried that didn't they? I think it may still come down to
numbers.
Rob
 

Re:Re: How can Borland make from with Kylix?

"siegfriedn" <sniedinger@yahoodotcodotuk>wrote in message
Quote
Robby Tanner wrote:
..
>
>Furthermore, his solution is doomed. Much like the "spin-off Kylix to a
>community" solution that's being advocated in this thread, I don't see
>how
..

Perhaps it is doomed, but from what we know Kylix seems 'doomed' already,
so what's the difference? At least my proposal could keep the product
alive for the developers who have invested time and money in it (and know
it's potential). Borland should make a profit from it also (way off the
IRR mark of course, but at least there could be a positive revenue stream
comin from it)
By bringing up the IRR I was pointing out why corporations still abandon
things that are profitable. To make a good argument for some continuance of
Kylix (whatever form that may take) to Borland we must be realistic about a
corporations motives (profit, both short-, medium- and long-term), reasons
for its actions and understand how they work.
Quote
Do you have an alternative proposal?
Nope, wish I did. As I said, my whole drive is to try and couch a
Kylix-friendly solution in terms that are mutually-beneficial. If there's
no benefit to Borland (in any way) it is silly to expect them to invest in
it. Not that I'm saying there isn't benefit, it just has to be discovered,
explained and back up.
Quote
It's only a accademic discussion anyways <g>
So far, but occassionally what starts out as academic can actually lead to a
ground swell movement. Most revolutions start out as academic discussions.
Rob
 

Re:Re: How can Borland make from with Kylix?

"Marco van de Voort" < XXXX@XXXXX.COM >wrote in message
Quote
On 2005-08-19, Robby Tanner < XXXX@XXXXX.COM >wrote:
>>While true, this doesn't have to be proved up front. Risk investments in
>>new
>>markets are not limited by this. (as Microsoft shows _clearly_ with
>>XBOX)
>
>You do have to make a case up front (as stated) to "show how Borland will
>make money with this".

I can't make such case even for D2006.
Nor was I asking you to. I was asserting that the statement "this doesn't
have to be proved up front" is false.
 

Re:Re: How can Borland make from with Kylix?

Robby Tanner wrote:
Quote

If it's so obvious, I suggest that the proponents get together and submit a
business plan to Borland. If the evidence is that compelling then the
company would be foolish not to look at it.
Don't take me wrong, but I think it is just inconceivable to suggest
that users of a bug-ridden product should write a business plan for a
software vendor, so the software vendor may be incline to fix bugs and
limitation with own product. Shouldn't it be the other way around and
the software vendor should know what kind of business plans they have
and communicate it to own customers and stockholders, what the
"road-map" is for the product in question?
In my opinion Borland should promptly either update the product and
restore the advertised cross-platform capabilities in Delphi/Kylix
*or* provide urgent fixes to the current product, stop selling it,
and provide an exit-strategy to all effected customers.
I don't think that "wait and see" current policy is an acceptable
business plan. A true business plan among other things should include
not only usual profit/loss and risk analysis on potential Kylix
revitalization, but also an assessment how much Borland can loss, if
continue to do nothing in that regard.. "Wait and see and do nothing"
perhaps for the moment is convenient for Borland, but in my opinion it
is extremely damaging to those who standardized on Kylix and
devastating to the small industry which started to form around Kylix
and cross-platform development for Linux and Windows with Delphi/Kylix.
juliusz
 

Re:Re: How can Borland make from with Kylix?

juliusz wrote:
Quote
Don't take me wrong, but I think it is just inconceivable to suggest
that users of a bug-ridden product should write a business plan for a
software vendor, so the software vendor may be incline to fix bugs
and limitation with own product.
The business plan would not be in order to fix bugs and limitations,
but to sell the product. Being able to sell the product would
facilitate fixing bugs etc.
Of course it's not the users responsibility to come up with a plan,
however if someone has some ideas that would help, I'm sure Borland
would like to hear it.
--
Dave Nottage [TeamB]