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Path: utzoo!utgpu!jarvis.csri.toronto.edu!mailrus!tut.cis.ohio-state.edu!
bloom-beacon!gatech!emory!km
From: k...@mathcs.emory.edu (Ken Mandelberg)
Newsgroups: comp.unix.aux
Subject: Future direction of A/UX?
Message-ID: <4036@emory.mathcs.emory.edu>
Date: 10 May 89 14:18:09 GMT
Organization: Math & Computer Science, Emory University, Atlanta, GA
Lines: 32

The computing world is getting more open.

I applaud Apple for disclosing its plans for MacOS in the
recent announcements concerning System 7.0.

I applaud the Unix International and Open Software Foundations
for being very public about defining their future releases.

On the other hand, I have seen nothing comparable from Apple
about the directions of A/UX. Actually, beyond some vague
comments on increased MacOS compatibility, I have heard nothing
about the feature content of future versions of A/UX. Certainly
nothing about the Unix only features.

I certainly could ask many questions. Will A/UX support:
  -- Motorola ABI
  -- SVID R3
  -- SVID R4
  -- New NFS features: Secure NFS, Netboot, NFS swap, ..
  -- RFS
  -- BSD features in SysVR4 : BSD fast file system, ..
  -- X/NeWS server
  -- ...

I encourage the Apple A/UX product management to follow the
precedent set by the Apple MacOS, UI, and OSF groups, and 
better define what their users can expect in future releases.
-- 
Ken Mandelberg      | k...@mathcs.emory.edu          PREFERRED
Emory University    | {decvax,gatech}!emory!km     UUCP 
Dept of Math and CS | k...@emory.bitnet              NON-DOMAIN BITNET  
Atlanta, GA 30322   | Phone: (404) 727-7963

Path: utzoo!attcan!utgpu!jarvis.csri.toronto.edu!rutgers!
tut.cis.ohio-state.edu!ucbvax!hoptoad!gnu
From: g...@hoptoad.uucp (John Gilmore)
Newsgroups: comp.unix.aux
Subject: Re: Future direction of A/UX?
Message-ID: <7304@hoptoad.uucp>
Date: 16 May 89 03:12:55 GMT
References: <4036@emory.mathcs.emory.edu>
Organization: Grasshopper Group in San Francisco
Lines: 48

k...@mathcs.emory.edu (Ken Mandelberg) wrote:
>                               Actually, beyond some vague
> comments on increased MacOS compatibility, I have heard nothing
> about the feature content of future versions of A/UX. Certainly
> nothing about the Unix only features.

That's because Apple is unlikely to provide any.

My guess is that Apple has sold between 1500 and 3000 copies of A/UX.
This is probably the level they are comfortable with.  Any customer
who runs A/UX is likely to switch to a different brand for their next
computer, since Apple hardware doesn't compete on price/performance.
The reason to sell A/UX at all is that GSA won't let US Government
departments buy any computers that can't be upgraded to run Unix.

This rationale also points up why the only development Apple is doing
on A/UX is "increased MacOS compatability".  If they can get the few
A/UX users locked in to the proprietary MacOS toolbox, they won't be
able to switch to more cost-effective hardware.  There is no point in
doing any more than this, since the number of units they want to sell
would never pay back the investment.  And it accounts for why Apple is
not marketing A/UX -- they don't WANT to sell copies.  Even the
Government purchasers are supposed to run MacOS -- UNIX is just there
to get past the GSA.

> I certainly could ask many questions. Will A/UX support:
>   -- X/NeWS server

I can certainly answer this one.  NO WAY!  We sold NeWS on A/UX since
the day A/UX was introduced, and were probably the first third party
product to ship on A/UX.  We have gotten zilch help from the formal
channels at Apple.  They don't WANT other display technologies or user
interfaces to compete with the Toolbox.  Especially not ones from Sun!
We have gotten some support from a few individuals scattered around
within Apple, but the corporate line is solidly against us.

Don't expect their X server to compete with the toolbox, of course.  I
expect it to remain slower, cost more, and never interoperate with MacOS or
Toolbox applications.  (When we told them we wanted to put NeWS, X, and
MacOS windows on the same screen at the same time they said it was not
possible.  This from the 'innovators' in user interface technology!)

This entire message is my opinion, based on trying to sell third party
software for A/UX for more than a year.  Correction or corroboration welcome.
-- 
John Gilmore    {sun,pacbell,uunet,pyramid,amdahl}!hoptoad!gnu    g...@toad.com
  A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State,
  the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.

Path: utzoo!attcan!uunet!cs.utexas.edu!sun-barr!apple!phil
From: p...@Apple.COM (Phil Ronzone)
Newsgroups: comp.unix.aux
Subject: Re: Future direction of A/UX?
Message-ID: <30843@apple.Apple.COM>
Date: 16 May 89 18:27:20 GMT
References: <4036@emory.mathcs.emory.edu> <7304@hoptoad.uucp>
Organization: Apple Computer A/UX Group
Lines: 99

The following is not a flame. If there is any accidental flammable "spills"
in this posting, let me know, and crew of guys from Alaska will come over
and steam out your spool directories. I am not allowed, and can't, talk
about Apple future product directions. At Apple, you have to be at least a
VP before you can leak that stuff. :-)

John Gilmore recently posted a response to a question from Ken Mandelberg
on the "Future direction of A/UX". Reading Mr. Gilmore's reply (in my humble
and subjective personal opinion), it looks like the reply is based more on
the author's problems in selling his product and perhaps lack of as much help
as he would like get from Apple. Mr. Gilmore brings up 5 points I'd like to
respond to:

    1. That's because Apple is unlikely to provide any [UNIX only features]

    *  Well, this is simply not true. System V plus BSD features, KSH, true
       BSD signals & CSH, TCP/IP, subnets, domains, NFS & YP, autoconfig and
       autorepair, a SCSI driver that accepted many other drives than just
       the manufacturers, all that in RELASE 1.0! Release 1.1 includes
       POSIX, better Mac binary supporte, HFX, increased SCSI support,
       better drivers, AppleTalk, and more.


    2. And it accounts for why Apple is>not marketing A/UX -- 
       they don't WANT to sell copies

    *  Well, that's news to me, the A/UX engineering, product management and
       marketing groups. We've sold far more A/UX systems in our first year
       than SUN sold in their first year. We WANT to sell, we LIKE to sell, ...


    3. Any customer who runs A/UX is likely to switch to a different brand...

    *  Well, I hope not!! :-) :-)


    4. The reason to sell A/UX at all is that GSA won't let US Government
       departments buy any computers that can't be upgraded to run Unix.

    *  Or MS/DOS. Certainly a (repeat a) reason that we did A/UX was to sell
       to the government markets. Since the U.S. government now has bids
       outstanding for several BILLION dollars worth of UNIX gear, I'd say
       that it ain't such a bad reason. Of course, bidding your equipment on
       billions of $$$ woth of bids does mean you're sorta serious about what
       you're selling ...


    5. If they can get the few A/UX users locked in to the proprietary MacOS
       toolbox, they won't be able to switch to more cost-effective hardware...

    *  Awwww, come on. We just don't think like that. We didn't bust our
       buns over SVVS, POSIX, X, NFS, YP, domains, TCP/IP and other effective
       standards to let claims like that be thrown at us. After all, what
       did you expect us to use for our windowing/UI software? New Wave??? :-)


>We have gotten zilch help from the formal
>channels at Apple.  They don't WANT other display technologies or user
>interfaces to compete with the Toolbox.  Especially not ones from Sun!
>We have gotten some support from a few individuals scattered around
>within Apple, but the corporate line is solidly against us.
>...
>This entire message is my opinion, based on trying to sell third party
>software for A/UX for more than a year.  Correction or corroboration welcome.

Our evangelists are the most
overworked creatures I've ever seen. I saw first hand our direct help given
to "competing" card & display manufacturers to build products that directly
competed with us. We spun Mac* software out to Claris because third party
software vendors didn't want us giving away free software.

Are you saying the corporate line is solidly against you?? You personally?
I don't understand this point at all.

I have personally worked with several small startup software companies that
based their reason-to-exist on A/UX. Like any startup, it can be a "bet your
mortagage" situtation. When things look tough, perhaps it is easiest to
blame the Apple, BUT, is it fair????

Tell us WHAT you didn't like or that makes your selling efforts so
difficult. Don't tell us your mystical intepretation of Apple policy.

Comments like "I need X in color" or "POSIX 13" to sell so-and-so are very
helpful.

Comments like "the coporate line is against us" tell us nothing and could be
seen as "cry witch" syndrome.

TELL US WHAT YOU NEED. WE LISTEN. O.K., we don't have infinite manpower and
could do it all, but we listen.


+-----------------------------------------------------------------------------+
|Philip K. Ronzone, Apple Computer, 10440 Bubb Rd, MS 58A, Cupertino, CA 95014|
|{amdahl,decwrl,sun,voder,nsc,mtxinu,dual,unisoft,...}!apple!phil             |
+-----------------------------------------+-----------------------------------+
| All "IMHOs" disclaimed and copyrighted. | Self defense is a human right ... |
+-----------------------------------------+-----------------------------------+

Path: utzoo!attcan!utgpu!jarvis.csri.toronto.edu!rutgers!apple!ames!
pasteur!ucbvax!hoptoad!gnu
From: g...@hoptoad.uucp (John Gilmore)
Newsgroups: comp.unix.aux
Subject: Re: Future direction of A/UX?
Message-ID: <7359@hoptoad.uucp>
Date: 19 May 89 02:47:04 GMT
References: <4036@emory.mathcs.emory.edu> <7304@hoptoad.uucp> 
<30843@apple.Apple.COM>
Organization: Grasshopper Group in San Francisco
Lines: 136

p...@Apple.COM (Phil Ronzone) wrote:
> John Gilmore recently posted a response to a question from Ken Mandelberg
> on the "Future direction of A/UX". Reading Mr. Gilmore's reply (in my humble
> and subjective personal opinion), it looks like the reply is based more on
> the author's problems in selling his product and perhaps lack of as much help
> as he would like get from Apple.

These problems and lacks have given me insight into the future
direction of A/UX.  In my humble and subjective personal opinion.

> Mr. Gilmore brings up 5 points I'd like to respond to:
> 
>     1. That's because Apple is unlikely to provide any [UNIX only features]

Quoted out of context.  The context was "future versions of A/UX".
Phil's entire response is about *current* versions of A/UX, which are,
I admit, (get those hot pincers away, Phil!  :) Unix systems.

>                                                   Release 1.1 includes
>        POSIX, better Mac binary supporte, HFX, increased SCSI support,
>        better drivers, AppleTalk, and more.

Of that list, only POSIX is a Unix-only feature.  The rest are specific
to the MacOS and to their hardware.

>     2. And it accounts for why Apple is not marketing A/UX -- 
>        they don't WANT to sell copies
> 
>     *  Well, that's news to me, the A/UX engineering, product management and
>        marketing groups. We've sold far more A/UX systems in our first year
>        than SUN sold in their first year.

Sun didn't sell any A/UX systems in their first year.  :)  But seriously folks,
Sun sold 1,100 Sun-1's total -- and some of those were sold the second year.
I notice that he didn't challenge my figure of 1,500 to 3,000 A/UX systems.

>     4. The reason to sell A/UX at all is that GSA won't let US Government
>        departments buy any computers that can't be upgraded to run Unix.
>     *  Or MS/DOS. Certainly a (repeat a) reason that we did A/UX was to sell
>        to the government markets.

Give me another reason that Apple did A/UX, besides government buying rules.

How many machines are bid to the government as MacOS machines
("upgradeable to Unix"), and how many as real Unix machines?  Lemme guess --
you can't talk about that.

>     5. If they can get the few A/UX users locked in to the proprietary MacOS
>        toolbox, they won't be able to switch to more cost-effective hardware.
> 
>     *  Awwww, come on. We just don't think like that. We didn't bust our
>        buns over SVVS, POSIX, X, NFS, YP, domains, TCP/IP and other effective
>        standards to let claims like that be thrown at us.

Let's knock over a few strawmen, shall we?  Everybody who sells Unix
has, or promises, SVVS, POSIX, X, NFS, TCP, etc.  This has nothing to
do with whether the Apple software strategy is to lock people in to the
MacOS toolbox.

I am not accusing Phil or the A/UX group of trying to lock people in,
by the way.  This strategy comes from high levels at Apple.  If they
don't want to lock people in, why don't they license the MacOS Toolbox
to other hardware vendors?  I'm sure a number of companies would like
to run Mac applications on non-Apple hardware.  Instead, Apple bought
the one company (Cadmus) that was reverse engineering it, and sues
everyone else who even looks similar.

>                                                           After all, what
>        did you expect us to use for our windowing/UI software? New Wave??? :-)

The only windowing software Apple currently sells for A/UX is X
Windows, and New Wave will certainly run on it (over the net).  There
is a "term" program that comes with A/UX, but I don't think a terminal
emulator with more than one window counts as "windowing software".  The
MacOS Toolbox support is not "windowing software" either, since you can
only run one "window" at a time.  Even the MacOS can run multiple
applications in multiple windows, but not the A/UX Toolbox!

> > We have gotten zilch help from the formal
> > channels at Apple.  They don't WANT other display technologies or user
> > interfaces to compete with the Toolbox.  Especially not ones from Sun!
> Are you saying the corporate line is solidly against you?? You personally?
> I don't understand this point at all.

Apple's corporate line is solidly against Grasshopper, since
Grasshopper sells NeWS, the Sun window system, PostScript on the
screen, etc, on Apple hardware.  I am one of three partners in Grasshopper.

> I have personally worked with several small startup software companies that
> based their reason-to-exist on A/UX. Like any startup, it can be a "bet your
> mortagage" situtation. When things look tough, perhaps it is easiest to
> blame the Apple, BUT, is it fair????

No, it isn't fair to blame Apple.  I'm not blaming Apple.  The problem
was that we expected there to be a market for A/UX software.  1500
machines is not much of a market; even though we sold to a reasonable
percentage of this market, we can't make money at it.  Apple is not to
blame for this, we should have figured out the market size before we
started.  The point of my message was to warn other people who haven't
figured out "the A/UX market" yet (both developers and users).

Grasshopper has *no* dissatisfied customers that I know of.  Everyone
who bought our product, likes it.  Nobody ever attempted to return it,
and many have bought upgrades and additional copies.  We just never
found enough people who could run it, because it depends on A/UX.

> Tell us WHAT you didn't like or that makes your selling efforts so
> difficult. Don't tell us your mystical intepretation of Apple policy.
> Comments like "I need X in color" or "POSIX 13" to sell so-and-so are very
> helpful.

I don't need technical features.  I need there to be more than 1500 machines.
Sun ships 10,000 to 20,000 Unix machines a month; there's a market for Sun
software.  Where's the A/UX software market?

Where are the Apple ads for A/UX?  Where are the promotions?  The computer
stores with A/UX in the window (or even on the showroom floor!)?

Another area is that Apple will provide mailing lists for developers to
sell to MacOS users, but not to A/UX users.  The only way we have found
to locate A/UX users is by watching who posts to the net!  Apple won't
tell us about the customers, and won't tell the customers about us.
They won't even tell us what computer stores are authorized to sell A/UX.
Finding 1,500 needles in a worldwide haystack is more than we can do by
ourselves.

> TELL US WHAT YOU NEED. WE LISTEN. O.K., we don't have infinite manpower and
> could do it all, but we listen.

I need there to be more than 1500 machines to sell to, and a way to find them.

Correction or corroboration welcome.  Any other A/UX developers on the net?
-- 
John Gilmore    {sun,pacbell,uunet,pyramid,amdahl}!hoptoad!gnu    g...@toad.com
  A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State,
  the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.

Path: utzoo!utgpu!jarvis.csri.toronto.edu!mailrus!tut.cis.ohio-state.edu!
ucbvax!hoptoad!gnu
From: g...@hoptoad.uucp (John Gilmore)
Newsgroups: comp.unix.aux
Subject: Re: Future direction of A/UX?  (Corrections)
Message-ID: <7360@hoptoad.uucp>
Date: 19 May 89 06:04:07 GMT
References: <4036@emory.mathcs.emory.edu> <7304@hoptoad.uucp> 
<7359@hoptoad.uucp>
Organization: Grasshopper Group in San Francisco
Lines: 28

Two small corrections to my previous message:

 *  I said Sun was shipping "10,000 to 20,000 Unix machines a month".
This is wrong.  Sun hasn't released this info for fiscal 1989 yet, but
if shipments follow the previous trend, they will end up shipping
10,000 machines for the first time this month or in June.  20,000
is way out of the ballpark.  Sorry 'bout that.

 * I guesstimated 1,500 to 3,000 copies of A/UX sold.  That is not
what we are really interested in, though.  The question is how many
copies of A/UX are running.  Within the last two weeks, two posters
have remarked that they removed A/UX from their systems and are now
running the MacOS exclusively.  I also note that when memory was
tight, the only way to get a 4MB Mac-II from Apple was to order it
with A/UX, whether you planned to run it or not.  In the other
direction, undoubtedly some copies of A/UX were cloned and are now
running on multiple machines.  Since both of these actions are private
decisions (and one is grounds for copyright infringement suits), good
numbers are going to be hard to find.  Still, getting an official
number of units sold by Apple would give us a ballpark idea of where
we stand.  Another good metric would be the number of A/UX 1.1 updates
purchased, since it shows how many sites are actively tracking the
latest A/UX release.  Is there *someone* at Apple who is authorised
to give these figures?
-- 
John Gilmore    {sun,pacbell,uunet,pyramid,amdahl}!hoptoad!gnu    g...@toad.com
  A well-regulated militia, being necessary to the security of a free State,
  the right of the people to keep and bear arms, shall not be infringed.

Path: utzoo!attcan!utgpu!jarvis.csri.toronto.edu!mailrus!ames!apple!phil
From: p...@Apple.COM (Phil Ronzone)
Newsgroups: comp.unix.aux
Subject: RE: Re: Future direction of A/UX?
Message-ID: <31123@apple.Apple.COM>
Date: 19 May 89 18:12:17 GMT
References: <4036@emory.mathcs.emory.edu> <7304@hoptoad.uucp> 
<30843@apple.Apple.COM> <7359@hoptoad.uucp>
Organization: Apple Computer A/UX Group
Lines: 47

Well, judging from his signature line, probably the only thing that John
Gilmore and I may agree upon is the second amendment. :-) :-)

>Apple's corporate line is solidly against Grasshopper, since
>Grasshopper sells NeWS, the Sun window system, PostScript on the
>screen, etc, on Apple hardware.  I am one of three partners in Grasshopper.

John, I don't know how to put this, but the Apple "corporate entities" have
never even HEARD of Grasshopper, much less be "against" Grasshopper. If you
think you have reason to believe that some individual at Apple isn't treating
you the way you think, let me know in private and I'll go speak to them.

To be definitive, Apple does NOT have a corporate line against UNIX or
Grasshopper. John Sculley himself was a major voice in saying "let there be
UNIX" at Apple.


>Where are the Apple ads for A/UX?  Where are the promotions?  The computer
>stores with A/UX in the window (or even on the showroom floor!)?
>
>Another area is that Apple will provide mailing lists for developers to
>sell to MacOS users, but not to A/UX users.  The only way we have found
>to locate A/UX users is by watching who posts to the net!  Apple won't
>tell us about the customers, and won't tell the customers about us.
>They won't even tell us what computer stores are authorized to sell A/UX.
>Finding 1,500 needles in a worldwide haystack is more than we can do by
>ourselves.

Well, I sure would like TV commercials for A/UX on prime time. Apple makes
(~) more Macintoshes in a DAY than SUN makes workstations in a MONTH (assuming
SUN runs the their factory 7 days a week).

The big majority of those Macintoshes are not A/UX, so guess where the ad
budgets go? Anyway, we CAN be much better on mailing lists, lists of
dealers, etc. and we in Engineering do speak up about it.

Let's agree to disagree if so, and leave the net bandwidth to the fun
technical issues. Throw darts at pictures of marketing people if it feels
good ...

+-----------------------------------------------------------------------------+
|Philip K. Ronzone, Apple Computer, 10440 Bubb Rd, MS 58A, Cupertino, CA 95014|
|{amdahl,decwrl,sun,voder,nsc,mtxinu,dual,unisoft,...}!apple!phil             |
+-----------------------------------------+-----------------------------------+
| All "IMHOs" disclaimed and copyrighted. | Self defense is a human right ... |
+-----------------------------------------+-----------------------------------+

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