Goals Summary

Mike Prince mprince@crl.com
Thu, 10 Nov 1994 10:58:38 -0800 (PST)

On Wed, 9 Nov 1994, Kyle Hayes wrote:

> I think we should initially target a relatively sophisticated audience
> at first.

Our very very first audience is going to be people who can ftp, have 
some spare time to fiddle and think our product looks "interesting".

> I agree that we should be able to provide (or give access to) a suite
> of "productivity 'ware" like wordprocessors etc., it seems very unrealistic
> to think that we could actually write a full distributed system that runs
> on multiple platforms and write all the user apps too. 

I'm pessimistic about those productivity apps appearing anywhere in the 
near future for our OS.  A few simply ones maybe, but nothing like Excel.

> I don't have that high an opinion of our abilities.  Maybe we are all
> the greatest programmers who have ever lived, but somehow I just don't
> think even that would be enough.

Nor does those few hours a week we'll each spend quickly add up to the 
10K man years Microsoft has probably dumped into its apps.  SGI doesn't 
do word processors, but their still in business.  I'm all for finding a 
good niche market and really trying to have an influence there.  I'm a 
complete novice at, but a big fan of, rendering realitic graphics.  So 
maybe I'll make a push for that niche.

> Maybe we will have to write something
> that works over other standard OSs.  Maybe we should writ the OS end
> and a POSIX/Mac/Windows compatibility suite and go the other direction.

That's a good question.

I'd like to provide a development environment that can float on top of 
other OS's for now.  It will minimize the risk/hassle for new 
users/programmers trying our system.

On the flip side, by providing some kind of compatibility we could ease 
the porting of main stream applications.  This would be good by providing 
a base of software for end users, but might be bad by under-utilizing our 
new technologies.

> Programmers/Marketing goals (Mike, any reason Marketing shows up twice?):

I figured there were two groups we were trying to "sell" to;  the 
end user who just wants to run his Quicken or games, and the people who 
will do the programming.  The programmers, naturally, are the first 
market we will have to penetrate, or the other will never develop.