No subject


Thu Nov 23 16:36:19 EST 2017


Scot,

>  My feedback is only free for 30 days, then you will have to register.

Good one, actually.  Absolutely nobody is interested in funding my projects=
, though, at least without a hefty increase in price tag.  I used to be a s=
ys-admin for the FSF back in 1990-1992 so it really does hurt not being abl=
e to freely write programs open-source and such.  I've been trying to see i=
f I can't restructure SwordSoft into a non-profit foundation before I have =
to seek VC.  If it matters, my personal income is $0 for all of 1993 and mo=
st of the products, publications, etc. I have released were free.  I'd -lov=
e- to be entirely open-source, however with people in my profession I'm req=
uired by default to sign my rights of ownership for anything created during=
 my employment duration (I've had to sign 4 so far in my career) and if I j=
ust go out and "get a job", that's pretty much it for anything I try to do =
that's innovative.  Its a bad catch-22 and I'll attest that I'm still looki=
ng for some alternative, and I've already done what I can by releasing almo=
st every bit of conceptual research I've placed into product design and dev=
elopment months ago.

The bug report doesn't quite catch the situation -- you clicked on somethin=
g on the tree and ... ?  Could you be more specific -- such as "I was using=
 XYZ test data" of whatever size on the following platform, and the item se=
lected was ZZZ.  That would be more useful to at least try and recreate the=
 problem.

I resolved not to release any program as professional without public evalua=
tions, comments, and feedback.  I've kept my previous programs in beta and =
not released them as final because of this, and I'm going to keep VIA in be=
ta for as long as it takes to become a solid program.  Simple as that.=20=20

>From: "LE"
>
>Whats with the poorly written java app's coming out from supposed 'securit=
y'
>vendors...

I wouldn't knock too hard, every program has its growth cycles.  I'm trying=
 to put away any defensive hat I might be wearing and putting on my securit=
y professional hat now.  I've had to evaluate hundreds of tools over the la=
st decade from companies, and my time spent as Software Security Architect =
for NORAD gave me a good look at what people pay $50,000 to half a million =
dollars or more for from "the biggest names in the industry" and most of wh=
at I saw was garbage.  Many of them didn't even know what NORAD was before =
flying out to demo their product.  I'd expect better from people trying to =
pitch a sale of that magnitude to possibly this country's most sensitive mi=
litary bases, especially since it was the focus of the movie WarGames (whic=
h was highly inspirational to the computer security industry), but the real=
ity doesn't exactly match the expectation even in the commercial world.=20=
=20

Besides the obvious problem of multiple platform compatibility, revision co=
ntrol on the target platforms, computers and fast computers of various manu=
facturers, even the effects of common applications running on the host that=
 the development environment didn't include, etc. its extremely difficult t=
o get the "big picture" without really seeing how anything performs in "rea=
l" environments.  Trying to tackle the problem of making any program work e=
xactly the same on all platforms everywhere is sickening -- I had to reliab=
ly port HostCHECK to HPUX, Linux, BSD, Solaris, IRIX, AIX, and scores of ot=
her UNIX like systems and just the effort of keeping everything compatible =
for commercial markets was worthy of book volumes.  However, it requires pa=
tience and time, something I have a lot of, and was quite successful in the=
 past.

The whole experience left an impact on me that means that I'm not going to =
limit my thinking or my enviornment for testing -- the public needs to see =
the result before the product is declared final.

Taking off my security pro hat, and going back to reality, I'm mostly laugh=
ing at my "so called" security vendor company anyway.  I've got a Duron 750=
 and two 333 MHz Intel boxes I'm doing the development on.  In my last comp=
any effort, I became temporarily disabled and under related circumstances, =
left the firm.  My situation is great compared to our staff artist, a Molda=
vian citizen working in a Moscow Children's Mental Hospital for $8/month + =
room and board.  That's not a 'security vendor' IMHO, that's two people wit=
h creativity, motivation, dreams, and a LOT of hope.  No way anyone could h=
ave known that, but that's SwordSoft for you.  There are a few other dreame=
rs in the midst as well, hoping something good comes of this.  Pueblo, Colo=
rado isn't exactly Silicon Valley. *grins*

---

Not directed at anybody in particular, but just to chill out a bit and expl=
ain SwordSoft and what really is unique about this little effort.  First of=
 all, I really hope that VIA is useful for people, I want it to be as solid=
 as possible, and that I can continue to advance the tool to commercial qua=
lity.  Its hard work, lots of effort, and anyone who goes through the proce=
ss of trying to make any program solid and usable for all people has to go =
through this.  I'll take the slams, but keep in mind programmers are people=
, with our own unique situations.=20=20

The future for SwordSoft is totally unwritten and I've been appealing to pe=
ople for awhile to help us become a non-profit foundation rather than a VC =
funded firm.  I've passed up, and have been passing up, a lot of Angel inve=
stment offers in order to retain control of the company in hopes that the f=
uture will present a way that I can follow in RMS's footsteps.  As I mentio=
ned earlier, I was a system administrator for the FSF, helped port their so=
ftware to various platforms, and my primary undergraduate thesis in 1991 wa=
s on porting the GNU environment to a Prime EXL.  Being completely unfunded=
, and in possibly one of the most technology barren cities in the USA, I'm =
presented with a very unique challenge, and there is a lot of "dream chasin=
g" going on.

The whole "shareware" stuff is the "middle road" approach I decided to take=
 until an opportunity that fits the dream presents itself or I run out of p=
ersonal funds completely (and I don't mean VIA -- its only a small componen=
t in a much, much larger architecture that I've been devoting research to f=
or over a decade.)  At least, it provides a reminder and an indication that=
 we appreciate some financial support if the program is indeed useful.  If =
the company gets any revenue at all, I would be able to skip past the whole=
 VC thing and be willing to scrape along on a few hundred bucks a month in =
order to keep some dreams alive.  I would agree 100% with anyone who said t=
hey didn't want this industry to be crowded with greedy firms with huge pri=
cetags, its really not on my agenda to become another.  I put -zero- effort=
 into writing the 'so-called' copy protection on the software as well, so '=
hint hint nudge nudge wink wink' .. To be perfectly honest, just keep in mi=
nd I'm only asking for support.  I could have made it a nightmare, but what=
's the point in putting so much effort into something I really don't believ=
e in.

Right now, forget the cash -- I want to improve the product.  I'll continue=
 making improvements and clean the code, we (Tanya and myself) are content =
with dealing with our current life situations, and I hope that with support=
 (and a lot of genuine good will) SwordSoft, VIA, and all the future techno=
logies my colleagues and I are interested in creating, will become availabl=
e to all.  As I said, we're dreamers, knowledge hungry, hard workers, tough=
 people, and have faith in our abilities.  I'd rather be known for having r=
eliable and publicly evaluated products that I can freely display to all.  =
That is the purpose of this public beta test.

For the hundred or so people who have begun the beta testing and the suppor=
t people have already given us, we give a very warm and grateful THANK YOU!

Eric Knight
President, SwordSoft.


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<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>From the quick comments:</FONT></DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2></FONT> </DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Scot,</FONT></DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2></FONT> </DIV>
<DIV>>  My feedback is only free for 30 days, then you will have to=
=20
register.<BR></DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Good one, actually.  Absolutely nobod=
y is=20
interested in funding my projects, though, at least without a hefty increas=
e in=20
price tag.  I used to be a sys-admin for the FSF back in 1990-199=
2 so=20
it really does hurt not being able to freely write programs open-source and=
=20
such.  I've been trying to see if I can't restructure SwordSoft into a=
=20
non-profit foundation before I have to seek VC.  If it matters, my per=
sonal=20
income is $0 for all of 1993 and most of the products, publications, etc. I=
 have=20
released were free.  I'd -love- to be entirely open-source, however wi=
th=20
people in my profession I'm required by default to sign my rights of owners=
hip=20
for anything created during my employment duration (I've had to sign 4 so f=
ar in=20
my career) and if I just go out and "get a job", that's pretty much it for=
=20
anything I try to do that's innovative.  Its a bad catch-22 and I'll a=
ttest=20
that I'm still looking for some alternative, and I've already done what I c=
an by=20
releasing almost every bit of conceptual research I've placed into product=
=20
design and development months ago.</FONT></DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2></FONT> </DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>The bug report doesn't quite catch the sit=
uation --=20
you clicked on something on the tree and ... ?  Could you be more spec=
ific=20
-- such as "I was using XYZ test data" of whatever size on the following=20
platform, and the item selected was ZZZ.  That would be more useful to=
 at=20
least try and recreate the problem.</FONT></DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2></FONT> </DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>I resolved not to release any program as=20
professional without public evaluations, comments, and feedback.  I've=
 kept=20
my previous programs in beta and not released them as final because of this=
, and=20
I'm going to keep VIA in beta for as long as it takes to become a solid=20
program.  Simple as that.  </FONT></DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2></FONT> </DIV>
<DIV>>From: "LE"<BR><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>></FONT><BR>>Whats=
 with the=20
poorly written java app's coming out from supposed=20
'security'<BR>>vendors...<BR><BR><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>I wouldn't =
knock too=20
hard, every program has its growth cycles.  I'm trying to put away any=
=20
defensive hat I might be wearing and putting on my security profession=
al=20
hat now.  I've had to evaluate hundreds of tools over the last decade =
from=20
companies, and my time spent as Software Security Architect for NORAD gave =
me a=20
good look at what people pay $50,000 to half a million dollars or more for =
from=20
"the biggest names in the industry" and most of what I saw was garbage.&nbs=
p;=20
Many of them didn't even know what NORAD was before flying out to demo=
=20
their product.  I'd expect better from people trying to pitch a sale o=
f=20
that magnitude to possibly this country's most sensitive military bases,=20
especially since it was the focus of the movie WarGames (which wa=
s=20
highly inspirational to the computer security industry), but the reality do=
esn't=20
exactly match the expectation even in the commercial world.  </FONT></=
DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2></FONT> </DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Besides the obvious problem of multiple pl=
atform=20
compatibility, revision control on the target platforms, computers and fast=
=20
computers of various manufacturers, even the effects of common applications=
=20
running on the host that the development environment didn't include,=20
etc. its extremely difficult to get the "big picture" without really s=
eeing=20
how anything performs in "real" environments.  Trying to tackle the pr=
oblem=20
of making any program work exactly the same on all platforms everywhere is=
=20
sickening -- I had to reliably port HostCHECK to HPUX, Linux, BSD, Solaris,=
=20
IRIX, AIX, and scores of other UNIX like systems and just the effort of kee=
ping=20
everything compatible for commercial markets was worthy of book volumes.&nb=
sp;=20
However, it requires patience and time, something I have a lot of, and was =
quite=20
successful in the past.</FONT></DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2></FONT> </DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>The whole experience left an impact on me =
that=20
means that I'm not going to limit my thinking or my enviornment for testing=
 --=20
the public needs to see the result before the product is declared=20
final.</FONT></DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2></FONT> </DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Taking off my security pro hat, and going =
back to=20
reality, I'm mostly laughing at my "so called" security vendor company=20
anyway.  I've got a Duron 750 and two 333 MHz Intel boxes I'm doing th=
e=20
development on.  In my last company effort, I became temporarily=
=20
disabled and under related circumstances, left the firm.&nbs=
p; My=20
situation is great compared to our staff artist, a Moldavian citizen workin=
g in=20
a Moscow Children's Mental Hospital for $8/month + room and board.  Th=
at's=20
not a 'security vendor' IMHO, that's two people with creativity, motivation=
,=20
dreams, and a LOT of hope.  No way anyone could have known that, but t=
hat's=20
SwordSoft for you.  There are a few other dreamers in the midst as wel=
l,=20
hoping something good comes of this.  Pueblo, Colorado isn't exactly=20
Silicon Valley. *grins*</FONT></DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2></FONT> </DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>---</FONT></DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2></FONT> </DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Not directed at anybody in particular, but=
 just to=20
chill out a bit and explain SwordSoft and what really is unique about this=
=20
little effort.  First of all, I really hope that VIA is useful for peo=
ple,=20
I want it to be as solid as possible, and that I can continue to advance th=
e=20
tool to commercial quality.  Its hard work, lots of effort, and anyone=
 who=20
goes through the process of trying to make any program solid and usable for=
 all=20
people has to go through this.  I'll take the slams, but keep in mind=
=20
programmers are people, with our own unique situations.  </FONT></DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2></FONT> </DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>The future for SwordSoft is totally unwrit=
ten and=20
I've been appealing to people for awhile to help us become a non-profit=20
foundation rather than a VC funded firm.  I've passed up, and have bee=
n=20
passing up, a lot of Angel investment offers in order to retain=20
control of the company in hopes that the future will present a way that I c=
an=20
follow in RMS's footsteps.  As I mentioned earlier, I was a system=20
administrator for the FSF, helped port their software to various platforms,=
 and=20
my primary undergraduate thesis in 1991 was on porting the GNU environment =
to a=20
Prime EXL.  Being completely unfunded, and in possibly one of the most=
=20
technology barren cities in the USA, I'm presented with a very unique chall=
enge,=20
and there is a lot of "dream chasing" going on.</FONT></DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2></FONT> </DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>The whole "shareware" stuff is the "middle=
 road"=20
approach I decided to take until an opportunity that fits the dream present=
s=20
itself or I run out of personal funds completely (and I don't mean VIA -- i=
ts=20
only a small component in a much, much larger architecture that I've been=20
devoting research to for over a decade.)  At least, it provides a=
=20
reminder and an indication that we appreciate some financial support if the=
=20
program is indeed useful.  If the company gets any revenue at all, I w=
ould=20
be able to skip past the whole VC thing and be willing to scrape along on a=
 few=20
hundred bucks a month in order to keep some dreams alive.  I would agr=
ee=20
100% with anyone who said they didn't want this industry to be crowded with=
=20
greedy firms with huge pricetags, its really not on my agenda to become=20
another.  I put -zero- effort into writing the 'so-called' copy protec=
tion=20
on the software as well, so 'hint hint nudge nudge wink wink' .. To be perf=
ectly=20
honest, just keep in mind I'm only asking for support.  I could have m=
ade=20
it a nightmare, but what's the point in putting so much effort into somethi=
ng I=20
really don't believe in.</FONT></DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2></FONT> </DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Right now, forget the cash -- I want to im=
prove the=20
product.  I'll continue making improvements and clean the code, we (Ta=
nya=20
and myself) are content with dealing with our current life situations, and =
I=20
hope that with support (and a lot of genuine good will) SwordSoft, VIA, and=
 all=20
the future technologies my colleagues and I are interested in creating, wil=
l=20
become available to all.  As I said, we're dreamers, knowledge hungry,=
 hard=20
workers, tough people, and have faith in our abilities.  I'd rather be=
=20
known for having reliable and publicly evaluated products that I can freely=
=20
display to all.  That is the purpose of this public beta test.</FONT><=
/DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2></FONT> </DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>For the hundred or so people who have begu=
n the=20
beta testing and the support people have already given us, we give a very w=
arm=20
and grateful THANK YOU!</FONT></DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2></FONT> </DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>Eric Knight</FONT></DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2>President, SwordSoft.</FONT></DIV>
<DIV><FONT face=3DArial size=3D2></FONT> </DIV></BODY></HTML>

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