Archive for March, 2006

The Pirate Bay

Thursday, March 9th, 2006

Today I came across a website called “The Pirate Bay” that hosts the full version of TopDesk 1.4.1. I’m normally indifferent about TopDesk being pirated, since it’s always going to happen and there’s nothing I can do to stop it, but these guys really got up my nose.

Not only are they low enough to pirate a $10 application from a small developer, but they have the gall to build a business around copyright infringement, asking for donations, selling advertising, and even sell t-shirts and clocks.

Pirates often justify their actions by saying “all software should be free”. That’s a noble, if unrealistic cause, and other people have taken a better approach to the ideal, but where exactly does selling t-shirts come in to it?

What kind of twisted worldview do these bottom-dwellers have that they think it’s OK for them to make money off the hard work of other people while preventing those same people from earning a living?

On the plus side, the comments on their TopDesk download page were universally positive about the application, so I guess that’s some kind of comfort :) .

How Not To Use A Blog

Wednesday, March 8th, 2006

Paul posted about TopDesk a couple of times, pointing out an incompatibility with one of his favourite applications. The conversation was a bit strained at times as we each tried to get our individual points across, but at least it was a conversation.

Today, Paul posted this article blasting TopDesk. Some of his claims are legitimate: in a specific situation, it is incompatible with the application he uses. The other claims are what I consider to be pure rant, but that’s not what bothers me. What bothers me is that this is the first time I’ve heard of them.

Like most relationships, user/developer relationships are all about communications. Users benefit by having their problems resolved quickly, and developers benefit from having happy users.

We’re lucky nowadays that email, blogs, and forums make communication easy. If you have a problem, please don’t sit and stew over it. If you have the time to post on your blog about how much you hate a piece of software, then you have the time to contact the developer directly first . After all, if we’re not aware of the problems you’re experiencing, how can we help?

Whether it’s positive or negative, user feedback is one of the major benefits I derive from running Otaku Software. It’s great to know that people find your work useful, and that it makes a difference (however microscopic) to their lives. So whether you have a problem, a feature suggestion, or just want to say hello, feel free to drop me a line at any time.

TopDesk 1.4.2

Friday, March 3rd, 2006

TopDesk 1.4.2 is now out. This release mainly cleans up the rough edges around the new Flip3D mode. To find out what’s changed, visit the What’s New page, and to find out more about TopDesk, visit the TopDesk page.

Motion Computing

Wednesday, March 1st, 2006

I’m pleased to announce that Otaku Software is now a Motion Computing Silver Partner.