News and commentary from the cross-platform scripting community.
cactus Mail Starting 2/23/98

From: ejw@ics.uci.edu (Jim Whitehead);
Sent at February 24, 1998 2:37 PM;
WebDAV talks, March 13, Palo Alto, CA

FYI, Alex Hopmann, Microsoft, and Jim Cunningham, Netscape will be giving talks at the March, 13, 1998 Bay Area Roundtable on WebDAV and issues of Internet document publishing. The meetings are held at the Hyatt Rickeys on El Camino Real in Palo Alto. Details are below.

Note that while the title of the talk session is "Internet Document Management," the intent of this title is to try and generate broad interest in this talk, and is *not* intended to indicate that WebDAV supports the same level of document management functionality as, for example, a DMA-compliant system. My apologies for the confusion.

I hope you'll all take this in the spirit it is intended, a good chance to come meet Alex and Jim, get an intro. to WebDAV, ask questions, and meet other people interested in WebDAV.

Also note that this is *not* an official meeting of either the WebDAV working group, or the WebDAV Design Team.

If you are planning on attending, please send Debra Brodbeck brodbeck@ics.uci.edu an email saying, "I heard about the March BART from Jim, and I'm going to attend." This way there'll be enough coffee and munchies. Thanks!

From: jlevine@siphoto.com (Jason Levine);
Sent at Tue, 24 Feb 1998 14:14:39 -0800;
FutureTense vs. Vignette

Sorry -- I tend not to get involved or incensed about things like this, but...

What Ross Garber is saying, essentially, is that Mike Nosal has some implicit duty to contact the CEO of a competitor when that competitor is making an ass out of themselves, rather than just talking about the problem publicly? This is lunacy; he himself admits that he uses the FutureTense web site in order to better understand his competitors, and to deprive his competitors of that for one second, much less one week, and _then_ to grouse when it's brought to light is infantile.

The fact that Vignette created the redirect, much less left it in place for three weeks, leaves me feeling like I don't know how much business I want to do with them; the fact that their CEO then chastized the competitor for airing the grievance leaves me suspect about the values that management is trying to instill.

From: rgarber@vignette.com (Ross Garber);
Sent at Mon, 23 Feb 1998 21:26:56 -0800;
Vignette Responds

As CEO of Vignette, I'd like to respond to today's posting by Mike at FutureTense. First though, I'd like to thank Dave and the folks at scripting.com for their 'coopetive' approach and their time invested towards creating the joint site XML demo with us over the past few weeks.

With regard to Mike's concern about redirects off our web site, I'd like to correct a mistatement of his. Much like Microsoft dropped a 10 foot Internet Explorer 'E' logo on Netscape's launch the night of the IE 4.0 launch, our webmaster team created a spirited, albeit temporary redirect for our competitors at time of our last product launch a few weeks back. As they got back to work, they clearly forgot to remove this once the humor was past. For this, I apologize to the folks at Futuretense; you're now free to crawl our site for competitive information, just as we do yours.

But, unlike you state in your posting, your company never actually contacted our management team to note your concern, and it wasn't until this afternoon that you had an intermediary in the investment community call me on your behalf. So, I'd invite you to ring me directly the next time you'd like to discuss something, and in the meantime, atleast give us a bit of notice before you register your slams in a public forum.

From: joe@squishyfx.com (Joseph Bilman);
Sent at Mon, 23 Feb 1998 14:08:01 -0500;
frontier 5

My name is Joe and I have just recently started my own software company called SQUISHY FX (www.squishyfx.com). We build 3D, interactive, real-time, graphics toys/tools.

However, this email isn't about SQUISHY FX. Previously, I was Director of Internet Development for a New York web and CD ROM development company. Our primary clients were industrial magazine publishers looking to publish their content on the web. When I first managed their business, we would take their Quark files, pull out the text and reformat the graphics, then build HTML pages for each article. This was a very tedious and expensive process. Then, we decided to automate the conversion of the Quark files into HTML with Beyond Press. This was somewhat better. Now, these clients want to build a database of their articles in their offices and then publish this content on the web whenever the see fit. This is, ofcourse, the natural progression of web publishing and makes a lot of sense.

The problem is that the company I left isn't interested in doing this sort of work. And can you blame them, they are (soon to be were) making a killing converting the files from Quark to HTML. The clients are becoming more aware of how the web works and have contacted me, eventhough I am no longer really in the field, to provide a solution where someone can come in and show them how to use software like Frontier to take back control of their website. Although I think Frontier is cool and have downloaded and played with it, I am not competent enough to do this task, nor am I very interested. It really has nothing to so with my new business.

To finally get to my question, is there a network or resource of people/companies that are interested in going into these large publishing houses and getting them up and running using Frontier? And then providing technical support and possibly even hosting the published websites? I currently have 2 pretty large companies in New York who are interested and, ofcourse, willing to pay.

From: mike@futuretense.com (Michael Nosal);
Sent at Mon, 23 Feb 1998 11:47:38 -0500;
Vignette and redirect

I've been a longtime reader of your site. I'm now with FutureTense Inc. We sell a web publishing product called IPS - Internet Publishing System. It is a template-based web publishing system, that grew from our first product, Texture. I'm also a longtime user of Frontier (and have been using it in ways that work with our product).

Your information on XML, web-publishing and other web trends is always appreciated. Lately, you've been mentioning Vignette, and some of their efforts on XML, ICE and other web stuff. They are considered one of our 'competitors.' So much so that they prevent me from visiting their website.

If I try to visit http://www.vignette.com/ from futuretense.com, they redirect me to http://www.annoy.com/. As you say, negative energy. Okay, maybe it was amusing to them the first day they did this, but the redirect remains in place for three weeks now. Imagine if the Bronco project folks redirected anyone from scripting.com, or if Netscape redirected folks from Microsoft.

We have notified Vignette's management about the redirect, so we can't blame this on an overly enthusiastic webmaster setting up the redirect just to cheese us off.

They are trying to act as a leader in the web area, but apparently not for folks they don't like (or that might compete with them.) I wonder if they redirect folks from other companies' domains too...

Just thought I'd let you know. Keep up the excellent work (I haven't had a chance to move over to Frontier 5, but plan to do so in the coming weeks. I've got some coooool ideas I want to try out with our product...)

Michael Nosal
Sr. Quality Engineer - mike@futuretense.com
FutureTense, Inc. Acton, MA http://www.futuretense.com/

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