Author Topic: Yet another reason why I love to hate my industry...  (Read 3881 times)

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Offline slateraptor

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Yet another reason why I love to hate my industry...
« on: September 17, 2012, 04:18:27 pm »
http://www.asti-usa.com/support/faq/hardware/09.html

Q: Can I save money by supplying my own PC?

A:
Quote
We could conceivably utilize a different PC platform, but it would have to be provided to us to check for compatibility. Of course, we would charge for this service and to be honest I don't think you'd like to know just how horribly expensive that just might be!

What a crock of horseshit. :-\
 

Offline poptones

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Re: Yet another reason why I love to hate my industry...
« Reply #1 on: September 17, 2012, 05:13:26 pm »
I don't get it. This is obviously specialized, very expensive stuff. Why would you even want to "supply my own PC?"

 

Online Mechatrommer

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Re: Yet another reason why I love to hate my industry...
« Reply #2 on: September 17, 2012, 06:53:07 pm »
I don't get it. This is obviously specialized, very expensive stuff. Why would you even want to "supply my own PC?"
and i dont get it, its expensive but it cannot tolerate different setting in PC (or OS?) it uses standard internet/ethernet protocol right? or no? it only works in LAN? not WAN or bigger? i didnt think this kind of thing exists, what is it alien technology? ::O
if something can select, how cant it be intelligent? if something is intelligent, how cant it exist?
 

Offline poptones

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Re: Yet another reason why I love to hate my industry...
« Reply #3 on: September 17, 2012, 07:29:41 pm »
It's sound gear. It has specific needs for i/o and latency. I'm sure it's loaded with all sorts of proprietary drivers. If you want to duplicate the functionality, load linux on your favorite machine and go to town, I'm sure you'll eventually get it.

When we were using macs for editing bays it was the same thing. This is why Apple doesn't support any software not run on  its hardware platform. I don't like proprietary solutions either, but for a business it can be cheaper than reinventing the wheel.
 

Offline SeanB

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Re: Yet another reason why I love to hate my industry...
« Reply #4 on: September 17, 2012, 08:03:22 pm »
Often the use of a specific set of boards is used to make the software design easier, having a consistent set of registers to program in the hardware can be a bonus, speed and timing wise. Can be a problem if the board becomes obsolete, or you have reliability issues from failing capacitors ( helped a RS customer once with selecting the most expensive Rubycons to replace the MysteryCaps that he had on the boards he was using in a embedded system. He winced at the price, but was quite capable of changing the hundreds of caps involved, cheaper than a redesign to use a different board) and you need a specific feature on the board that is not offered by other boards.
 

Offline amvakar

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Re: Yet another reason why I love to hate my industry...
« Reply #5 on: September 18, 2012, 05:23:11 pm »
It has little to do with the actual hardware requirements, I'd imagine. If I'm building something that is supposed to be high-performance and integrate with software, the software interface is as straightforward as possible and the heavy lifting is done in that specialized hardware; if I'm buying someone else's high-performance hardware, I expect the same. The problem is that even though you may be entirely competent at building a system that won't get in the way of the third-party hardware, for everyone like you there are a hundred people who are thinking about shoehorning it into some system that they have lying around or which is chosen for cost over performance. And who catches flak in the latter cases? Never the idiot who was trying to cut costs without thinking.
 

Online Mechatrommer

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Re: Yet another reason why I love to hate my industry...
« Reply #6 on: September 18, 2012, 08:11:50 pm »
the thing i suspect is those chaps are lazy arse only aim at clueless governments or big companies who care less about paying premium for support. in the sense that...
1) they have specialized hardware granted, but no built in processor/computer/PC. the hardware relies on external PC and Windows99 install with special setting and they only have one PC in their R&D department to test with. or either too busy doing support across countries, resulting one or two engineer has to go back home half the globe when one guy needs to verify his custom PC for compatibilitiness and compliance resulting that very expensive cost as claimed.
2) their application software programmers are even clueless about ever changing world and variety of races and religions.
3) or maybe they intentionally do that, policy says that. its the mission and vision.
if something can select, how cant it be intelligent? if something is intelligent, how cant it exist?
 

Online Mechatrommer

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Re: Yet another reason why I love to hate my industry...
« Reply #7 on: September 19, 2012, 10:20:36 am »
1) i'm talking something connected to a PC, a PC! like sound card, dac card etc etc, but only this time networked voice stuffs which i'm clueless at. why dont they build something like photocopier machine? it got internal computer and HDD inside, so no "can i supply my own PC?" issue.
2) good example on DATONG and bingo! they should not concentrate on DIY (do it themselves) support, they should provide a... MANUAL.
3) you will bitch if your DVD player only work on certain brand TV, not your newly bought Samsung's or Sony's et al brands.
4) there's difference in government someone who make decision and someone who follow orders. i'm in government, just as youself, so maybe i'm talking about myself, but only i follow orders.
5) hypothesis need not be proven right or wrong or provided with evidence.
cheers mate ;)
if something can select, how cant it be intelligent? if something is intelligent, how cant it exist?
 

Offline baljemmett

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Re: Yet another reason why I love to hate my industry...
« Reply #8 on: September 19, 2012, 10:52:55 am »
1) i'm talking something connected to a PC, a PC! like sound card, dac card etc etc,

But that's not what they're selling.  They're selling what used to be (and probably still is) called a "turnkey system" -- they supply and are responsible for the entire stack.  Crucially, they aren't selling components you can plug into your own pile of cobbled-together crap because they don't want the hassle of having to support it when it turns out to be useless; that's their decision, just as it's their customers' decision to pay the premium for a complete package that works.  If you're not interested in that, buy something else.

(Trying not to draw comparisons to a certain Californian fruit company, lest the resident blowhards start with their ranting...)
 

Offline madires

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Re: Yet another reason why I love to hate my industry...
« Reply #9 on: September 19, 2012, 11:26:35 am »
PC is not PC. While setting up commercial PC based VoIP-PBXs with linecards (BRI & PRI PCI cards) I discovered huge differences in the handling of IRQs by all the chipsets. For common office use nobody would ever notice those differences but with several linecards generating tons of interrupts some PC mainboard chipsets struggle to handle the amount of IRQs. The vendor recomments some specific PC systems but says that you may actually use any PC matching the mimimum requirements. If the vendor would sell the PBX software directly to users (he sells just to trained and certified resellers) bundled with the PC I would understand that. Otherwise it would be a service nightmare since all users would buy El Cheapo off-the-shelf PCs and complain that the PBX can't handle all the calls.
 

Offline AntiProtonBoy

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Re: Yet another reason why I love to hate my industry...
« Reply #10 on: September 19, 2012, 11:45:35 am »
I have done some graphics/game programming on the PC, and I must say, providing generic support for all hardware out there is not exactly a walk in the park. The different permutations of hardware configurations, including driver support of the said hardware, the stability of said hardware, the variations in API features exposed by the hardware vendors, different versions and revisions released by the OS vendor, different third-party software installed by the client, ...etc.  can introduce some really interesting unforeseen compatibility problems. While there are standards and specs on the PC platform that should allow you to write generic software, the problem with standards is that everybody loves to break them.

 

Online ejeffrey

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Re: Yet another reason why I love to hate my industry...
« Reply #11 on: September 19, 2012, 12:07:27 pm »
the thing i suspect is those chaps are lazy arse only aim at clueless governments or big companies who care less about paying premium for support. in the sense that...

Or possibly you don't know what the shit you are talking about and are just ranting?

Even making a simple application with minimal hardware dependencies work across every possible PC hardware and software is a nightmare, as anyone who has worked in professional software development can attest to.  You have to budget a lot of money for testing on many configurations, money for providing customer support for the configurations you missed, and development resources to make it work everywhere.  This increases costs to your customers a lot.  You do it anyway because you have no choice.  When you are making a turn-key system including hardware and software, if at all possible you want to target only certain approved configurations.  Whether you do this by a list of approved hardware or systems and a steadfast refusal to provide any customer support to people not using the approved devices, by only selling your software with a service contract that includes on-site installation, or by shipping preconfigured hardware to the customer depends on how big your market is, what your software does, and how many units you sell.

For example, while any PC can play sound and transfer files over the internet, getting reliable, low-latency sound capture and network streaming is highly dependent on the driver and configuration.  If your network card stalls for 100 ms every 30s, you will never notice it while web browsing, but it will totally screw up audio streaming at least if you care about latency and don't just use huge buffers.  Sound capture is also generally less advanced than playback on consumer sound cards, both from the hardware and driver front. Look at the huge amounts of time FPS gamers spend tweaking their system settings to optimize their ping time -- with no guarantee that it won't make other applications perform worse.  It is far cheaper to have a guy who actually knows what he is doing tweak a single system and then clone it for your customers than to provide tech support to every customer to tweak their own $1000 PC.

I have no idea if this companies products are well designed or a good value and I don't really care.  I am just saying that the people ranting here about it who have no idea about the reality of professional software development should give them the benefit of the doubt.  For software with a small market and requiring close integration with hardware this is a relatively standard practice and may very well be the most cost effective route.
 

Online Mechatrommer

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Re: Yet another reason why I love to hate my industry...
« Reply #12 on: September 20, 2012, 06:11:56 pm »
thank you! my 1st post (reply#3) pretty much answered. so i have nothing more to provoke :P
and i guess hypothesis at reply#7 is proven wrong ;)
« Last Edit: September 20, 2012, 06:14:57 pm by Mechatrommer »
if something can select, how cant it be intelligent? if something is intelligent, how cant it exist?
 


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