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Re: Objective-C 2.0 and other new features in Leopard

From: Stefan Bidigaray
Subject: Re: Objective-C 2.0 and other new features in Leopard
Date: Sat, 10 Nov 2007 11:37:49 -0500

On Nov 10, 2007 10:43 AM, Jesse Ross <address@hidden> wrote:
Call me cynical, but coming up with a slogan doesn't really seem like
a solution to the issues that we're having. We need developers, plain
and simple. In order to get developers, we need positive exposure.
That's not going to happen by pushing what amounts to marketing-
speak. Positive exposure is only going to come from building
powerful, innovative applications that make use of GNUstep. We need,
to put it bluntly, "killer apps".

I agree, but this is one of those the chicken and the egg problems.  In order for a developer to want to write a killer app for GNUstep, GNUstep must have a large user base, but in order for GNUstep to have a large user base there must be a kill app.

Psychologically, a slogan is a must.  There's a reason why every company has a marketing department.

You're also assuming people even know what GNUstep is.  Every time GNUstep does something news worth (like a new release posted on OSNews) someone writes something along the lines: "GNUstep has a new release, great, I've been using WindowMaker for years and love it."  As far as most people know, GNUstep doesn't even exist.

Obviously a slogan isn't going to do anything on it's own, but if you think about it, it's just a phrase, how hard would it be to edit the current logo to include it?

If you build something that people want to install, users will show
up to work around deficiencies: packaging, porting, etc. New users
will make it easier for themselves, which makes it easier for others,
which causes an ecosystem to grow around it. I would guess that Ruby
(and Ruby's marketshare and mindshare) has been improved as a result
of Rails being the "Next Big Thing". GNUstep will only get into that
position by having unique, desirable applications built using it.

The problem here is that you're assuming people don't want to use GNUstep.


I just got Greg's e-mail, so I'll comment on that as well... I agree with almost everything he said, most notably the theming issue which comes up every time this type of discussion arise.

In my opinion, lack of marketing is one of the reason people think GNUstep is hard to install.  The fact that, as Greg mentioned, people think GNUstep is "hard to install" is unbelievable for the reasons he outlined.  But in reality, this is not what people consider "installing".  To most Unix users, "installing software" is associated with "installing packages", which is a lot easier.  They think, all I have to do to install GTK is "apt-get install libgtk2.0-0 libgtk2.0-dev" to have a complete GTK development environment, so downloading and compiling GNUstep is too hard since I have to check for dependencies, library headers, etc.

Packaging software, as far as the "hard to install" issue goes, is the key.  And outdated packages only hurt, it better to have no packages than old packages for a particular platform (as in the Debian packages' case).


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