[rescue] ham gear

Andy Wallis rawallis at panix.com
Mon Dec 5 10:38:19 CST 2005

On Sun, Dec 04, 2005 at 10:07:04PM -0500, velociraptor wrote:
> On 12/4/05, Peter Porter <peter at brightavenue.com> wrote:
> > I've come to agree with this very much.  COTS software is inevitably
> > inadequate, too bulky, *WAY* too expensive (read: Kofax) for the
> > features most projects seem to end up using (read: one or two), and in
> > my ever so humble opinion... "integrating" software is always a messy,
> > lousy proposition.  I'd never want to depend on that for any project I'm
> > responsible for.

In my experience, COTS software itself is not usually the problem. The 
problem comes down to some nit underestimating the COTS integration when
the project/program is glue code for major COTS software. Everyone seems
to think that COTS is a panecea and vendors never lie. I've been stuck
building and supporting huge COTS software where the vendor lied about
its true scalibility or it was a glorifed beta version. 

The COTS idiots are those that believe integration is a quick and painless
step. Without exceptions, some large POS software will always make things
difficult or impossible. There has been more than time that I have laughed
at a manager or engierr(engineer that makes errors) when they say the phrase
"It's all COTS, so it(integration,build, development) will be easy."           
> Google is the ultimate example of success in the marketplace as a
> result of doing just this.  If you have too much COTS on your resume
> (at least as far as IT folk go), forget being considered.  They want
> those that prefer to roll their own (not just can).
That example is just silly. COTS is best used(and should only be used) 
when the following apply: 
	It is outside our scope or ability to make our own.
	It will be too damn expensive to roll our own.
	It will take too damn long to roll our roll.
	Everybody else makes this, why do we need to reinvent the wheel?
	It came with the hardware and its supported, might as well use it.

What I throttle cow-orkers for is either underestimating the effort, thinking
that more is better or FOSS=free money. In all events, it is better to sit
down and critically think about what you really need and not what the 
salesweenie said while snuffing nose candy. 
-Andy Wallis

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