Concursive Corporation

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  • Norfolk, VA
  • 23510
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PUBLIC PROFILE

The Benefits of Beta Software

Posted by Michael Harvey on October 1, 2007 6:35 PM EDT
Michael H. photo

Here at Centric we have several rules of thumb. One of my favorites is never cast your beta net too wide, which seems to be happening in the CRM market recently.

The beta testing system is about bringing a select number of users into the vendor's fold in order to get a close communication between user and the developers. This not only helps the vendor with the trickier aspects of fine-tuning, it also ensures that end users are crystal clear on what they are using at the stage it is at. The final version might be right round the corner, but what if the company responsible for the beta keeps moving the corner? Without complete insider knowledge, customers simply can’t predict what will and won’t break when the final code ships.

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The Value of Transparency

Posted by Michael Harvey on September 28, 2007 4:15 PM EDT
Michael H. photo

Open source software can justifiably claim to have spawned one of the most vibrant and intelligent communities in existence. The main tenet of the open source community—and this should go without saying—is openness, running from the decisions made by the higher echelons of management at open source software companies down to the very bedrock of the code itself. This tenet has turned the traditional marketing cycle on its head.

As more companies embrace an open culture, there are fewer rumors about potential deals, releases and products, and this positively affects the quality of products. This is not to say that rumor mongering no longer exists: gossip and speculation accompany all healthy communities—it comes with the territory. There is, however, more knowledge of what is happening internally within each company in the open source space, than in other sectors. Dana Blankenhorn recently pointed out in a blog posting;

“What passes for rumor is speculation over the importance of things which have, in fact, happened. Even among proprietary vendors.”

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Oregon and On and On

Posted by Michael Harvey on August 3, 2007 8:50 AM EDT
Michael H. photo

The waves from this week's OSCON in Portland, Oregon, are still rippling through the open source community. As you would expect from an O'Reilly event, there was plenty of debate at the conference, not least about 'badgeware' licenses.

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High Tech Life and Times in Hampton Roads

Posted by Michael Harvey on June 28, 2007 1:05 PM EDT
Michael H. photo

There aren’t many serious, high growth, venture-backed technology companies here in Hampton Roads, VA.


We’re a military town. Heck, a military region! Hampton Roads is actually a group of seven cities: Norfolk, VA Beach, Chesapeake, Portsmouth, Hampton, Newport News, and Suffolk, encompassing the entire southeast Virginia region of the Chesapeake Bay. Hampton Roads is home to Norfolk Naval Base, the largest naval installation in the world, Langley Air Force Base, NASA Langley, several army bases, and the Oceana Naval Air Station. We are the largest metropolitan area without a professional baseball team, a fun but otherwise useless factoid. There are a lot of (1.7 million) people here, but the federal government is by far the largest employer. We are home only to Norfolk Southern Railroad, Stihl Chainsaws, and Ferguson Enterprises.

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Ethics of using "Open Source"

Posted by Michael Harvey on June 26, 2007 10:20 PM EDT
Michael H. photo

As background, I'm the CEO of Centric CRM, one of the vendors of open source software that has been at the fulcrum of a heated discussion centered around which vendors can rightly use the term "open source" when describing their products. While I normally stay out of such verbal jousts, I decided I ought to share our view point if only given the tone of some of the recent postings. Specifically, to address the sentiment of some that vendors using the term “open source”, whose offerings differ from the strict OSI definition, are either disingenuous at best, dishonest at worst.

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What Makes an Open Source Company

Posted by Michael Harvey on June 25, 2007 8:25 PM EDT
Michael H. photo

Over the last few days there has been some controversy about what open source is, which started with a post from Dana Blankenhorn at ZDNet, and a reply from Michael Tiemann, the president of the OSI.

As the open source community breaks into two groups for a face-off about this (see DIGG, and SlashDot), I would like to offer our point of view.

At Centric CRM, we are dedicated to delivering value to our end customers. Our products are developed to satisfy their business needs and to provide them with the innovation, freedom and control they need for the software their business depends on.

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