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October 24, 2006


Tim Sheridan

A friend of mine is currently creating a web based cad application. Is there a market for web based cad products opposed to buying a cad software application?

Mike Ahearn

I have worked for some large software manufacturers in the United States. It is my opinion that piracy exists simply because it is very difficult to get access to the software technology. In fact, I sold a 7.6 million dollar deal to a very large oil and gas company and my company struggled providing our customer their software licenses. The concept of selling perpetual software licenses is a dying business model. Web services are the way of the future! Pay by the drink.



My family is entertaining an exchange student from Brazil during this school year. It is as you described, "piracy laws are not enforced". He laughed a tells me that I am being "ripped off" when I subscribe to Napster2Go and fill up my MP3 players for $15/mo. He says that all software, music, and movies are pirated; either via internet or merchants who sell burned copies for as little as $2US. He also tells me that technology is very expensive (an iPod that sells for $250 here sells for $1200US in Brazil).

In Malaysia, I read that their government is asking MS to remove the anti-piracy measures they recently deployed because it is "embarrassing" for a businessman in Malaysia to show a presentation while a "tattoo" on the screen reads, "This Windows OS may be counterfeit".

It is a global problem with no perfect solution.


I see different software packages having different values.

I was happy to pay $25 to WinZip, $60 to Eudora email, $40 to ZoneAlarm, and so on, because I use them on a daily basis.

OTOH, I do try to get the software legally for as cheaply as possible. For instance, I needed to buy PageMaker about 12 years ago. Adobe had a competitive upgrade special for Microsoft DTP software. So I bought the MS software just to get the upgrade price, the total of which was still less than half the retail price of PageMaker.

OTOH, I get really ticked off when I invest in software (to use the marketing term), and then the developer orphans it, such as PageMill and PageMaker, both from Adobe.

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