On 4/24/11 2:31 AM, Riemer Thalen wrote:
To achieve this, the developers and policy makers need to look outside the
community. Test users and focus groups of dedicated users can name new
functions that are "nice to have". IMHO, now it is more important to give
priority to the missing features that average non-committed users "need to
have". To identify those features, you'll need to ask former users. That was
the initianal point I tried to make. It turns out the opinion leaders in the
community do not agree with me. So be it.
Former users, or people who decide to switch back from OOo/LO to MS
Office, are a very small group, and each one of them has a different
reason. Office suites share over 90% of their features, and so it is
very difficult to identify "missing" ones.
Most people use not more than 5% of features, and power users get to
20%. A tiny minority goes beyond this threshold. Deciding on features
because we assume that people base their decision on features is wrong
Switching from MS Office to OOo/LO usually happens because of the price.
In the majority of cases, users continue to use both suites for quite a
long time, until they decide for one. Many people continue to use both
forever, maybe one in the office and the other at home.
Companies switch from MS Office to OOo/LO because of the better TCO, and
the very few that switch back (their names are on MS web site, and MS
has even made a YouTube video out of them) decide to do so because they
made a wrong assumption and prolly overlooked factors like the internal
Even the Microsoft video does not use features as the main reason to
switch back to MS Office, just because the main reasons is not based on
Software adoption is based on features for programs focused on a
specific task, and even in this case there are exceptions: FreeHand
(Macromedia) and Illustrator (Adobe) have fighted for years in several
markets in order to overtake each other, but for weird reasons (as they
have both made extensive research to discover that often the choice was
because: "I like it more") they have never been able to achieve their
Italy was a FreeHand market, and adding FreeHand features to Illustrator
never worked. France was an Illustrator market, and adding Illustrator
features to FreeHand never worked. Graphic designers were just sticking
with their original choice.
Anyway, today office suites share 95% of the same feature set. The
situation was different in the past, and at that time Sun did several
efforts to know the missing features (this led to OOo 2.0, which was a
feature release). It was back in 2004, but since 2007 OOo has steadily
increased its market share exactly because the feature problem was solved.
Just a few points to end the message:
1. MS has a yearly global turnover of 60 billion dollars. The Office
Products Division has a yearly global turnover of 25 billion dollars
(not quarterly) which is flat or slightly decreasing (if I remember
well, it used to be 28 or 30 in the recent past).
2. Inside a community, no one is an opinion leader. Each one makes his
contribution based on his competences, and this makes some people more
visible than others, but this is just a matter of life. A community is
based on teamwork, and each tiny bit of work is very important.
3. "The journey is the reward" (Steve Jobs, in a completely different
environment, but for a similar objective). Communities move slowly, and
results come in slowly. Our community is very mature, because over the
past 10 years we have seen happening all it could happen. We are here
for the long run (the marathon) and not the fiscal quarter.
Best regards, and happy Easter break, Italo
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Re: Fwd: [libreoffice-marketing] BrOffice product and community will be called LibreOffice · Andrea Pescetti
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