Monthly Archives: August 2006

Big Dog Protection

I can’t stand wasting development cycles on copy protection. For me it’s like spending money on heavy duty locks and security systems for your house when you know that the professional criminals will simply knockout a pane of glass and be in and out before anyone responds to the alarm. Those TV commercial criminals that scram the instant The Clapper turns on the house lights are jokes—real crooks get the job done first.

My solution for home protection is a big dog called Magic. If she doesn’t know you, you’re not getting in the house. If she does know you, the worst you’ll suffer is a case of severe slobber contamination (unless you properly pet her belly).

I wish I had the software equivalent of Magic. Not that I want my users to end up with drool on their hands, but I’d love to have simple, friendly protection in Debt Quencher. I know that any casual effort I put into protecting it will get broken by serious hackers and too much lock down will frustrate the honest buyers.

At my current job, I’ve fought against some of the extreme protection schemes that require users to have hardware dongles or to allow periodic “phone home” cycles. I keep losing the battle to refocus development time on cooler features instead of stronger window bars. For my own products, I’m determined to spend less time worrying about who is ripping me off. If someone can steal stuff and still sleep well at night, I’m not going to lose sleep thinking about them.

I’m also not stupid enough to think casual theft doesn’t happen. I subscribe to the old proverb: “Trust God, but tie up your camels.” Many of us would “forget” to pay for software unless encouraged to do so. I’m planning to limit features until the software is purchased as my encouragement. The protection will be non-invasive and nearly as friendly as Magic. Unlike my dog, I’ll make sure the software doesn’t leave warm gifts in the back yard or bark at rabbits in the front.

The Smoking Gun

It’s official. I’ve pulled the trigger on the Debt Quencher beta. Hear the crickets?

Of course it’s a non-release at this point. I haven’t announced it yet to anyone except my friends and family—and only the techies in that group understand what I’m talking about. The others just give me a passing, “Way to go Kev!” as if I scored a turkey in bowling. (Did that bowling comment just ruin my street cred?!?!) Uh, I really don’t bowl much. Okay, I own my own ball and shoes, but it’s not like I hang out at the lanes or anything.

But I digress; this post is about the beta.

I’m working on the press release (my first five versions sucked in various ways, shapes and forms) and hope to have that out by tomorrow so there is at least some chance for traffic to my site. The No Thirst Software site is getting better as I have time to primp it. I have some articles to post that will work with Debt Quencher and help people move towards a cash positive future. I want this to be a full-service company. I envision the No Thirst site being useful even if you don’t purchase anything (but please purchase something!). I have high hopes that I will make a positive dent in the universe with this enterprise (and a positive dent in my cash flow as well so buy my stuff!).

During this beta period, Debt Quencher is free. I’ll set the final price next month when I release it. Feel free to chat with me on the newly established beta test e-mail list. You can sign up for it on the Debt Quencher beta page.

And if you wouldn’t mind… keep it quiet about the bowling equipment. Thanks.