Scott Hanselman

Nantpad: The Good and the Bad of it

August 17, '04 Comments [8] Posted in Nant | Tools
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Good: Nantpad version 1.0 is out.

Good: Nantpad gives you a friendly way to author and run NAnt build files.

Bad: They have GOT to be kidding with the pricing. $250 a seat for an editor to an open source tool?  Come on, guys, NAnt is NOT that hard to edit.  $25, no brainer.  $50 gives me pause.  $250 must be a joke.  God bless you for trying. Now try again.

For now, I'll continue to use intellisense and VS.NET to edit build files as outlined in a previous post, using either this older schema or one from http://nant.sourceforge.net/schema/ whenever the 0.85 schema gets updated.

About Scott

Scott Hanselman is a former professor, former Chief Architect in finance, now speaker, consultant, father, diabetic, and Microsoft employee. I am a failed stand-up comic, a cornrower, and a book author.

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Tuesday, August 17, 2004 9:27:38 PM UTC
WTF?? They must have read the software equivalent of Field of Dreams, "if you develop it, they will buy...".
Tuesday, August 17, 2004 10:02:39 PM UTC
Or, more likely, they read Eric Sink's latest article on product pricing.

http://msdn.microsoft.com/library/default.asp?url=/library/en-us/dnsoftware/html/software08052004.asp

"Charge as much as you can get" (not an actual quote, just my summary)

(The entire article is worth reading.)
Tuesday, August 17, 2004 10:30:51 PM UTC
I can't decide if this is hilarious, offensive or both.

Figure things like ReSharper go for $99, CodeSmith for $75 or LLBLGen Pro for less than $250--they're clearly just out of touch or not extremely bright.

Let's help them out and post what we think would be reasonable for them to charge. I wouldn't pay more than $25 personally, I have good editing capabilities for xml and it's just not going to save me that much time.
Tuesday, August 17, 2004 11:19:48 PM UTC
Come on give them a break.

Gotta make a million before msbuild comes out
Wednesday, August 18, 2004 12:09:29 AM UTC
I personally don't think their price point is all that absurd.

It's rather audacious to try to sell something which is an add-on for an open source technology anyway. The vast majority of people who use NAnt are simply not willing to pay a dime for this tool. Many of the ones who *are* willing to pay are probably not all that price-sensitive.

In some sense, these guys have made a conscious choice to go with a "high-price-low-volume" approach. I generally prefer the higher volume strategies, but premium pricing is not as crazy as you might think.

The interesting point for me is that they are selling only through a reseller. I'm sure Component Source is getting 40 points, so the ISV is only going to net 150. They probably set the price high to accomodate these channel costs.

Bottom line: I'm not saying I like their choice, but I think it's conceivable that it could work out okay for them.

Wednesday, August 18, 2004 3:16:56 AM UTC
Amen, Brother. I can't sell this to my boss. :) I am fine using XSD + VS.NET Or good old nxml-mode in emacs.
Thank you very much.
Monday, August 23, 2004 7:21:49 PM UTC
I fully agree with you Scott!
Tuesday, August 24, 2004 7:22:38 PM UTC

I read Erik Sink's article. The piece on price complaints was funny :) It's true. No matter what price you use including paying someone to use your product, there are always people who will complain.

http://msdn.microsoft.com/library/default.asp?url=/library/en-us/dnsoftware/html/software08052004.asp
Abdu
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Disclaimer: The opinions expressed herein are my own personal opinions and do not represent my employer's view in any way.