Saturday, March 11, 2006

PictureSync: interesting application, odd licensing

[Update 3/12/06: Jacob responded to this post with a very thorough and considerate reply. I don't think the licensing arrangement should be a deterrent any more to registering PictureSync.]

Searching my blog, I found 3 references to PictureSync, from the 3/32/05 to this most recent one. It's an application for simultaneous uploading of images and metadata to photo services; it's been in development for a while and it's good enough to buy.

I use it with SmugMug and iPhoto; my keywords and captions get uploaded to SmugMug. It's a bit non-intuitive, and I had one mysterious failure, but I've registered it.

There is one odd thing about this product that I wish the developer, a very interesting and responsive person, would make clear in advance. When you register you don't get a registration key. Instead he sets a bit in a server somewhere that causes the app to store its registration pw in the pref file (presumably encrypted). After that you only need the server if you reinstall.

The licensing terms are quite fair, but I've told him I don't like this. If I'd known ahead of time I wouldn't have registered the produt, but after corresponding with Jacob about this I'm willing to give it a try (not asking for a refund). Be warned, however.

Jacob has grand ideas for Holocore, I hope he succeeds! I also hope he rethinks this licensing strategy, but perhaps it will become more common. I think we are going to explore different methods, old and new, for generating revenue from software. I hope we find a solution that's mutually beneficial, certainly I'd like the small companies that make my favorite software to prosper.

Of course if Jacob's company, Holocore, goes bankrupt it would not be surprising if the creditors misused their ownership of the licensing.

1 comment:

Jacob said...

John, I've responded to your comments on a blog post. Let me know if you have any follow-up!