Author Topic: On the future of Feng Office  (Read 23083 times)

amejat

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On the future of Feng Office
« on: February 11, 2010, 07:32:43 PM »
I write to really express my anger and disappointment.

I have been following, promoting and supporting OpenGoo since its early beginning when it forked from ActiveCollab (and took initially most of its code).

I was surprised to see this project becoming a company and had the feeling that it completely lost its link with the community.
I also got the feeling that people in the Feng Office team were more concerned by making money than developing a piece of software.

Some days ago, I asked about the GelSheet status and had to send 3 emails to get an answer. And the answer was... "If you want to see a spreadsheet apps in Feng Office, you have to sponsor it. What about 1000$ or 2000$ ?".

Honestly, I thought it was a (bad) joke !

Come on guies ! You first took lots of code from the FREE and open source Active Collab project (version 1.0) then you asked the OpenGoo community to support you and submit some code.
And now that you just changed the name of the project as "Feng Office", there is no more community-based development ? No more development without sponsoring ? Everything is just about money ?

First, it is a shame, as the spreadsheet application has been a promised since version 1.4 and lots of work has been done by... the community (!) and not the dev team.
Second, it is a shame, as Feng Office (or opengoo) is INCOMPLETE without a spreadsheet app and you can not seriously imagine that it will be adopted WITHOUT a spreadsheet apps.
Third, your commercial model makes no sense. I was proposing to have 2500 users with a commercial hosting from you (with the condition to know if and when will we have a spreadsheet app) and you just do not care about this hosting request but ask us to pay for a development already FREELY initiated by the community. ???!!!

At this point, it seems obvious to me that:
- Commercial people are controlling Feng Office
- They completely lost the link with the OpenGoo community
- There is no more active development for this project (except if someone pays a few thousand bucks).

I go back to real and active open source project like eyeOS !






nsrivastava2

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Re: Why Feng Office is going nowhere ?
« Reply #1 on: February 12, 2010, 01:34:12 AM »
Hi Amejat,

I can understand your frustration, it might be that without Spreadsheet you are missing some major feature in FengOffice.

All I will like to tell is, there is no point shouting at the development team. I understand Open Source Softwares are good and should supported, but at the same time there is money required to live and be motivated to continue the work. USD 1000 for Spreadsheet application development is not much. The development team asked from the community to contribute few dollors and help the team start on with the work, looks like community is more interested in wasting money downloading paid iphone apps rather than contributing for the development efforts.

May be you do not agree to this, yet all I will like to tell is FengOffice Community version is good and very useful. Just because of one spreadhsheet app you cannot dump FengOffice. I have not found any other OSS which is as good as FengOffice.

I request you to cool down a little and enjoy the application. Spreadsheet will certainly be there. Give the team sometime to develop.

--
Nitin

amejat

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Re: Why Feng Office is going nowhere ?
« Reply #2 on: February 12, 2010, 12:22:26 PM »
Dear Nitin,

First, I refuse to pay for a project that I actively supported and promoted since months.

Second, if you consider that 1000 bucks is not a big deal, Happy You ! But for that price, I can buy several licenses of Microsoft Office which includes a spreadsheet app.

Open Source projects can not hope to be developed with a "sponsoring" system. If I pay for a feature, I want to be free to sell it to have my money back. So I will not "offer" it to the community. It is a loss for the community.

Open Source project can only make money on:
- Hosting solutions
- and custom development: but for features highly specific and not designed to be distributed.

Sorry to say that for me, a spreadsheet app is NOT a highly specific feature and should simply be part of any serious web office.

Concerning the alternatives, just have a look at eyeOS: It has a COMPLETE web office.

Regards.

Syrion

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Re: Why Feng Office is going nowhere ?
« Reply #3 on: March 16, 2010, 02:03:14 PM »
Tried it the past couple of days: you can't save spreadsheets in eyeOS because of a bug. ;)

cabeza

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Re: Why Feng Office is going nowhere ?
« Reply #4 on: March 18, 2010, 12:19:18 PM »
If I pay for a feature, I want to be free to sell it to have my money back. So I will not "offer" it to the community. It is a loss for the community.

Interesting reasoning: Consequently, I guess that when Feng Office pays for the development of any feature (as we do with most of Feng Office features), we should also sell it to have our money back. It would not make sense to give it away for free.

If we all thought like you, there would be no free open source projects ...

allenlook

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Re: Why Feng Office is going nowhere ?
« Reply #5 on: March 18, 2010, 01:39:09 PM »
I fear that once a spreadsheet function goes live, the development team will be inundated with bug reports for what I consider to be a non-core feature, and development of features more in Feng Office's strategic core will be delayed.

If a spreadsheet is needed, there are already many excellent ones available.  Google Docs, Zoho, Open Office, and more.

Feng Office is in my opinion better served providing collaboration tools for team-spanning projects.
I am a volunteer moderator.  Any statements, opinions or observations I contribute are solely mine and are not necessarily shared by the makers of Feng Office.

ignacio

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Re: Why Feng Office is going nowhere ?
« Reply #6 on: April 01, 2010, 05:01:22 PM »
Alex,

It's interesting how one of your references of open source projects is ActiveCollab, a project that is no longer open source and is 100% commercial, and yet you are angry with us that are still open source and have only embraced a comercial side in order to keep alive the open source project.

Also, Marcos' post hit the nail right on the head.

bigbearomaha

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Re: Why Feng Office is going nowhere ?
« Reply #7 on: July 26, 2010, 08:12:19 PM »
In a way,  I can understand the op's frustration.  Spreadsheets are a highly used item in most offices, especially for reporting and tracking.

If an online office app sells itself as a 'complete' office solution, there is no reason not to expect such a common feature as spreadsheets.

It also does not hurt to use your free community version as the test bed for development, most commercial opensource projects do just that.  if users want stability in the community editions, they just stay one version back.

BTW, telling users of your product to go use another product if they don't like a feature of yours is not what most people refer to as good customer relations.  You never know when that one community edition user will turn into that one fee paying customer because they felt so well served by a product and the company that makes it.

but hey, it's your company.  do as you like.

Big Bear

cabeza

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Re: Why Feng Office is going nowhere ?
« Reply #8 on: July 28, 2010, 10:16:33 AM »
Thanks for your comments Big Bear.

We value our users and would love to keep all of them.

chris.alex.thomas

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Re: Why Feng Office is going nowhere ?
« Reply #9 on: August 02, 2010, 04:00:24 PM »
I have an idea for a project based upon the fengoffice system, here is what I planned to do.

1) develop a plugin which can be used to complete the objectives
2) tally all the money cost to create the plugin, because you have to do it yourself, or pay someone
3) offer the plugin from my website, with a price for a download link
4) show the amount of money remaining until I reach the amount invested has been paid
5) offer the plugin without charge.

people may say this is wrong, or against the open source philosophy, etc, but I paid to develop it, so I deserve to get that investment back, I dont breach any licence rules, because it's free and open source, you just have to pay to get the development link.

the price I plan to charge would be about 2 euros a copy, if you can't afford that, you are either without a credit card/pay pal/method of paying or a liar.

chances are, in this world, you are a liar if you tell me you can't afford to pay 2 euros.

if you can download it from another source, good for you, remember, I am not charging money for the software, but charging money to give you a download link, I would think that 2 euros is not a bank breaker and anyone giving my software away without charge, should feel ashamed of themselves for breaking the balls of someone willing to put HIS on the line.

After it's all paid, I give the software away without charge and of course, all updates, if paid for, put the price back up and you have to pay again until I reach zero again.

THAT WAY, you can return the money on investment for new features people want and keep with the open spirit, you are sponsoring in a way, but not in another way.  I realise this will annoy some people, but most likely those people don't contribute anything and are just parasites of the open source world anyway, so they have no right to critisise me.

cabeza

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Re: Why Feng Office is going nowhere ?
« Reply #10 on: August 02, 2010, 05:10:03 PM »
It's a great idea !!

Very similar to what we are trying to do in order to make the product grow.

You might consider reusing the existing-but-hidden spreadsheet editor. It has an interesting architecture but lacks browser compatibility.

Karl

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Re: Why Feng Office is going nowhere ?
« Reply #11 on: November 30, 2010, 02:03:22 PM »
Is there anything news in the development of Feng Office?

For me it seems that it stucks a little bit.

Is there any progress?

Thank you.

cabeza

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Re: Why Feng Office is going nowhere ?
« Reply #12 on: November 30, 2010, 02:23:43 PM »
We are making a bug fixing release this week.

Karl

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Re: Why Feng Office is going nowhere ?
« Reply #13 on: November 30, 2010, 03:10:24 PM »
Anything new besides bug fixing?

I'm asking because there are still some for a collaboration suite imho vital features missing.

cabeza

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Re: Why Feng Office is going nowhere ?
« Reply #14 on: November 30, 2010, 03:53:48 PM »
Unfortunately no new features for this next version. We've had no choice than to develop what our customers request, and these are mostly not new collaboration features.

As a consequence we have some interesting features we've developed for our customers and haven't had time to test and release yet.

We hope to release at least an alfa of 1.8 this year with some of these changes!

Regarding the spreadsheets project, the students have focused on documentation lately and have consequently postponed coding and bug fixing.

The academic  project is coming to an end, which might be good news. Recently the students mentioned their plan to improve GelSheet editor in the near future to make it more compatible and browser friendly.

 

anything