[Coco] CoCo Wireless RS-232 Pak

J.P. Samson jps.subscriptions at gmail.com
Thu Mar 5 05:24:56 EST 2009

On Mar 4, 2009, at 7:55 PM, Gene Heskett wrote:
> On Wednesday 04 March 2009, J.P. Samson wrote:
>> On Mar 4, 2009, at 7:02 PM, Boisy Pitre wrote:
>>> I have to believe that you are well aware that giving away your
>>> CoCoNet software would directly undermine sales of DriveWire.
>> Wouldn't giving away the CoCoNet software also undermine sales of
>> Roger's custom RS-232?  Anyone with an existing RS-232 Pak could get
>> all the functionality for free.
> Missing one point though.  Using Rogers bluetooth, we can do away  
> with the
> sometimes pretty long cable from the pc to the coco.  My poor old  
> coco3,
> sitting all set up but in the finished basement, about 25 feet away  
> by a hole
> in the floor, has been damaged, or had stuff in the cabling damaged  
> by the emp
> of a nearby lightning strike, twice now.  Using the bluetooth, there  
> is no
> long cables to pick up the emp.

Yes, if you are interested in a BlueTooth RS-232 Pak, I imagine you'd  
buy one regardless of whether CoCoNet existed.  In that case, CoCoNet  
being free or bundled with the Pak really has no bearing on the  
sale.  :-)

Giving CoCoNet away for nothing could also undermine sales of Roger's  
CoCoNet ROM Pak, too, if one is content simply to load the CoCoNet DOS  
off a floppy as needed.  (Painful, yes, but this is how DriveWire is  
basically sold, too.)  This is the scenario that concerns Boisy,  
because he is charging for the DriveWire client software.

But each of these two products, CoCoNet and DriveWire, do promote  
sales of supporting hardware for their respective enterprises.  Roger  
will be selling BlueTooth RS-232 Paks, and standalone Paks with  
CoCoNet ROMS and serial cables.  Cloud-9 bundles a serial cable with  
DriveWire software purchases, and will burn DriveWire ROMS for  
insertion into existing floppy drive controllers.  Personally, I think  
these additional purchases are required if you will be regularly using  
the software.

This is a capitalist country, so we should be encouraged by such  
competitive moves.  But the CoCo community is small, and I guess Boisy  
isn't too happy about potentially having his toes stepped on in this  
case.  But what should really be of concern to Boisy is whether the  
CoCoNet software is superior to the DriveWire software.  That is what  
is really going to affect his sales, regardless of whether CoCoNet  
costs money or is free.

I'm not gonna take sides here or anything.  I don't think this is a  
scenario where anybody needs to be taking sides.  I already own  
DriveWire 2.  I have no idea if DriveWire 3 will be a compelling  
upgrade--all the details assumedly haven't yet been released.  So  
Boisy has made his money out of me and probably many others, and I  
expect at some point Roger will too for his BlueTooth CoCoNet (unless  
Cloud-9 pulls a rabbit out of its hat).

-- JP

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