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Interclue vs Linkalert

Posted by: Seth Wagoner on August 21, 2007 06:08 AM
Hi there anonymous,

Linkalert does one thing really well, and it only requires 10k worth of XUL and Javascript files [1] to do it with. It's a lightweight, which is not necessarily a bad thing. It also seems to have no licence associated with it at all, which means it's not open source, strictly speaking. Standard copyright law applies in such cases.

Interclue is a heavyweight. Interclue does about a hundred things rather well, delivers a rather large productivity boost to the user, and is about 100 times larger than Linkalert [1] (which, as you can imagine, means about 1000 times more hours had to go into getting it right) . In truth, we should have been out ages ago, but I love features and I can be a bit perfectionist, and I've been the one calling the shots, for better or worse. On the other hand we have tried to make sure that the user experience is extremely "light" and takes as little mental brainpower (and system resources) as possible to achieve the maximum possible productivity boost.. We still have a way to go on this front, but our <a href="">reviews</a> suggest we've made a very promising start. A lot of the code is also dedicated to giving the user options - the defaults work pretty well but we think everyone has their own optimal way of browsing and we want to help them find it.

It's true that at Interclue we are more about giving people free time than we are about giving them free software. But consider this: more free time means more time to write free software :-) And of course, the current version is free as in beer. So please, we're offering you a heck of a lot of free beer here, take a sip, go on, you know you want to :-)

More seriously, in Christchurch New Zealand, no one will pay you to build something "bleeding edge" and then give it away, and our attempts to pay our own way through the early development stages were extremely frustrating, so we bit of the capitalist fruit and took angel investment, and now we're honor bound to deliver an excellent return on that investment - and in todays business environment that probably means raising even more capital pretty soon, obligating us to make even more money further down the road. If it turns out that in the fullness of time the best way to move the business forward is to open some or all of our source, we'll do it. Well before that we will be improving, documenting and opening our APIs, and allowing people to build on what we have started, because I'm pretty sure that *is* the best way to move things forward, for us, for developers, and for what (in my more grandiose moments) I call the the global knowledge collective.

If it makes you feel better about trying our free beer, should we manage to make a few shekels from our efforts in the fullness of time, I know I'll personally be donating to support several <a href="">open</a>, <a href="">free</a>, <a href="">fair</a> and <a href="">just</a> projects going on around the world, and I'll be arguing for the company to do a certain amount of corporate philanthropy in the same direction. You can read more about my technoprogressive ideals on my <a href="">blog</a>. But for now I'm just looking forward to helping people be more productive surfers and eventually having a few less instant noodles into my diet :-)

<a href="">Seth Wagoner</a>,
Geek in Chief
<a href="">Interclue Ltd</a>

[1] In both cases I'm ignoring the locale files and the images, and talking about the pre-squeezed version of the javascript and XUL files.


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