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In my previous blog post I told you about my worries. I was thinking about it and even talked to a few of you about it. It reminded me of something that happened to me once. A few years ago I was hired by an organisation. I was just one of the Uniface pro’s. Besides Uniface they used another development platform. I witnessed something very interesting, let me share this with you. Both disciplines had their own room. In one room all went well, a dozen men worked in silence, behind a closed door they achieved their goals on time and within budget. The applications they maintained were very stable and performed as expected. The other room on the other hand was very lively, the walls were filled with all kinds of merchandise. The young developers had all kinds of technical issues, played arcade games in their breaks and drank beer after work. Can you guess in which room the Uniface developers worked? Easy one, I know. If you can guess the next answer, I’ll buy you a beer. Which platform was preferred by the management? I am afraid this is going to cost me a fortune on beer. We all know the answer. Of course, the other guys did a great job. I am, like most of us, too negative about them and the tooling they use. The reason they were not that productive was caused by the tools they used. But did they win? Change the point of view. Let’s say you are the management of a company. The company depends completely on a few Uniface applications. Very stable and low on maintenance costs. In the near future you expect major changes in the organisations strategy and the markets are changing rapidly. You need to invest in new applications and/or change the existing ones. Are you going to use Uniface or go for something completely new? Choosing Uniface is the rational choice, isn’t it. Imagine, you have all these experienced guys (sorry ladies, but this is a man’s world…). But you never hear them. Sometimes you wonder if they even exist! How do you know if they use modern techniques? And what if you need a dozen more of these pro’s? Where and how can you find them? When you consult google.com you’ll find all kinds of software warehouses to deliver you support on that other tool, while on Uniface all you find in the top 10 is Uniface itself. If I had to give advice to this management, my advice would be to choose this other tool. Regardless which tool. Being a Uniface developer, as I am, I can tell you this hurts a lot. But it’s just a rational thing. Or isn’t it? This reminds me. Once in a small village in The Netherlands the only shop closed down. All inhabitants did their grocery in the large supermarket in the adjacent city. Quiet normal, I guess you see this everywhere in the world. The next day an alderman announced in the newspaper that it would be a good idea to not only close the small shop, but also close the complete village. If the inhabitants loved the city to do their grocery, why not go and live there. This action did not save the local shop. But what if this one guy achieved to create a kind of movement. Let’s say, he achieved to motivate some entrepreneurial people. With this small group they could create new business for the local store. Instead of competing with the large competitor, focusing on the strengths. Sometimes you need the help of a community. Today, the strength is the community! All successful tools I know have communities. Some very successful tools even are created by the community! A product community can be a partner or a critic ally for the company, but always fight on the same side. But, where is the Uniface community? All I see is a great product and a website (uniface.info) with lots of fans. But that is not a community! It is something created by Uniface. I want to create a real Uniface community.  I truly believe we have the strength to unite and make the difference! You can either participate or wait behind a closed door and I believe I can hear some melancholic seventies music. Let’s make some noise…. Let the world know we are here…. In my next blog I will share my ideas and plans with you all. Do you have idea’s? Please contact me  :-)

7 Comments

  1. A beautiful lady of 50 years can never compete with a seductive young girl of 20, for those treatments, botox, silicones can always do demonstrate his years and any man will always choose the youngest. So we are doing everything to cover the signs of aging on our software, but we can do nothing against the youth who advance, perhaps only ally ourselves with them.
  2. Hi, nice comparison! But, I don't agree. There is a big difference between humans and software. Sure, we can try to stop a human from aging. I have been to an exhibition of Marilyn Monroe recently. She found the ultimate solution. She died and left us pictures en movies. She would have been 90 this year, but all we see is a young woman. For ever young. We cannot stop aging and continue living. All we can do is slow down the process (drink enough water and use suntan) or hide the signs of time. Perhaps in the future we can do with humans what we can do with software. Modify it or even rebuild. This year Uniface exists 30 years. But it's only the name, that is 30 years old. Only if we stop believing in the continuity of Uniface, it will become old.
  3. I agree (partialy) with you, but as you wrote the young developers win. What about my beer ?
  4. just having a cup of coffee ..... while I think of some ideas for the community
  5. Interesting article. I agree completely for I too simply love Uniface. Over the years I changed (steady)jobs several times because I was so disappointed with the lack of enthusiasm (or sheer neglect) for Uniface displayed by the management of the companies in which I was an employee. At this moment I don't have a good answer but I think it should be something outside of this site (because this site is not known by anybody who is not an "old" Uniface-er anyway).
  6. I agree. Please send me an email. I like to talk about your point of view.