Offer version 2 free to all existing customers as compensation.

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  • Updated 5 years ago
Given the fact that Flex are now 5 months behind the roadmap for ver 1.4 with no schedule given for release, I feel that Flexradio should offer Version 2 of SmartSDR for free to existing customers as compensation for the failed promises which have been made over the last few months. 

I doubt given the farcical situation that has existed with version 1.4 that many people are going to be willing to shell out money for version 2 just go through the whole dog and pony show all over again.
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M0GVZ

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  • fed up

Posted 5 years ago

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Brian Morgan VK7RR/4

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I find this whole discussion quite disappointing. Yes,  I agree that waiting for 1.4 is tiresome but does anyone want another 1.3.8 which may have been released too early because of similar complaints. For me, I would rather that 1.4 takes as long as is necessary to achieve what is desired with it, rather than being released with the risk of having bugs in it. As for discounts anyone who is not happy with SmartSDR releases can always write their own code. I wonder how long that will take!
To all those at Flex I say, don't be diverted by complaints about the "delay" in release of v1,4, but let us hope that this extra time has allowed for v1.3.8 to be given an honourable farewell.
73 Brian VK7RR/4
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Barry Comer

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Well said - 1.4 will be great followed by 1.5 when ready. Paying for 2.0 is not a problem since it helps to ensure the long term support of my awesome 6500. Now to actually go use my radio instead of hanging out in a forum group.
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Bill -VA3WTB

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As Gerald said in his last post, now that the ground work in 1.4 witch is need for future updates has been completed, the rest of the releases will be coming faster.
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James Kennedy-WU5E

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Being able to remote your station will make this radio history making. Now with that said DSP I could less about, I live in the country and have no noise. I pointed my beam to 86 degrees and hear E30FB pile up just fine and got him on the 15th call. I hope I can watch my BIG Screen by start of the actual baseball season. I have no issue with waiting a little longer for a ROCK Solid product.


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DrTeeth

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It's not like it's impossible to remote right now.
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Walt - KZ1F

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I thought it was common knowledge. the radio is the lowest on the list of reasons why you won a contest, made a contact, whatever. When a split is listening up 5-30, 'on the 15th try' is mostly luck followed by a distant second with antenna, followed by RP followed by operator skill, followed by radio. I have a 6000 and have yet to work E30FB. Why? Largely luck or lack thereof. However, I do kick butt working into the South Pacific.
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Walt - KZ1F

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From Neil, "SQQ, your insight of internal Flex matters is amazing! I am sure you are absolutely correct that we will not see 1.4 anytime soon. I do plan on checking back with you when they finally do release it so you can do a "victory lap"!"

There seem to be an awful lot of spokespersons for FlexRadioSystems, most of whom are not employees of Flex Radio Systems.  Further, there seems to be an awful lot of people pontificating on how to develop software for a living and what is, and is not, acceptable. People have a radio that works. If you don't like how it works, buy yourself a multi-thousand dollar Microsoft SDK (that would be software development kit) and have at it. For those that ask Elecraft, Kenwood, Yaesu et al, if they can change the color of their control knobs, ask the developer of RemoteHamRadio, he'll be glad to tell you how to do it on an Elecraft. For those who feel as James does that remoting to a radio will be history making, um, again, talk to the developer of RemoteHamRadio, it's been done, Talk to Howard, it's been done, talk to Stu, it's been done.

It's wonderful that folks like (or dare I say LOVE) their radios. Get a room. This sycophantic worship of FRS and the 6000 is just too over the top. This whole topic reminds me of the husband that so LOVES his wife that he beats the snot out of her whenever she fails to live up to the pedestal  he has placed her on. No software is "ROCK Solid". The best a developer can hope to accomplish is finding and fixing the next to the last bug. <-- industry humor.
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Steve W6SDM

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"But daddy, you said we were gonna have ice cream!"

"Sorry kids.  The store is closed now.  We will have to wait until tomorrow when it opens."

"But daddy, you said..."
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Walt - KZ1F

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:-) you've had kids huh Steve?
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Neal - K3NC, Elmer

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As with all things, especially aggrevated by the internet's lowering of the barrier to act like a complete jerk, there are people who see things going well and getting better, and people who see things as going horribly and getting worse. The lowering of the jerk barrier means we hear a lot more from the negative thinkers today than we did 20 years ago.

One thing is simple, someone else cannot change the nature of another person, only people can change themselves. Even though I am on the alpha team and see what is going on there (and great things are going on), I usually run my 6700 on the latest general release because I am continually setting it up on new computers. 

When 1.4 comes out, it will be more stable, more performant and with functionality than promised in that release. After all, Flex has over performed against promises on every other release to date (which again makes me wonder what koolaid those negative guys are drinking).

We cannoit shut out the negative people and only give them satisfaction by entering into their bitching. This is not being mean about anyone saying anything negative about flex, its about this negativity with no purpose type of discussion.

Wait a bit. Regardless of those that"know" we have a long time to wait until 1.4 is released, I believe the opposite. And i know it will be great. And, ignore these guys and the chips they have on their shoulders.
(Edited)
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Steve W6SDM

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Yeah I did.  Six of 'em.  :)
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Burt Fisher

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As a father if one store was closed for ice cream, I went to another. I did not promise and NOT deliver.
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WA2SQQ

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When you share your opinion in a civilized manner and get such heated responses, you immediately know you’ve hit a nerve.  There are two issues on the table. When Flex announced the 6000 series, and later shared their road map for software development, together that info defined what they planned to offer. The features and those that were planned enticed many of us to upgrade. We also expect the new software to work properly and add the advertised features according to how they were described. I’m certain that FRS subscribes to this theory.

However, when there are delays in delivering what was advertised, or when these delays aren’t explained, many may soon start to see this as false advertising. How many times will one accept hearing, “the check is in the mail” before you decide to do business elsewhere? We are all part of this community because we have faith in FRS, but the lack of a two way dialog with facts will test anyone’s faith.

This brings us to the second and more important issue that no one seems to be talking about. Let’s all acknowledge that SDR radios are becoming more popular and FRS is no longer the only game in town. Other “open source” designs are making some remarkable strides in a fraction of the time. Personally, I still believe that FRS is still the best choice.

FRS built their community one radio at a time but they cannot forget that the honor and respect they accrued can easily be lost over just one mistake. And, as Neil pointed out, the Internet and social media now enable more facts and opinions to be shared literally in the blink of an eye. Such comments do influence perspective buyers, and today a company’s reputation is only as good as its perceived to be. I work for a major Japanese consumer electronics company. The competition from Korea and China is fierce, and there isn’t a day that goes by where we are not reminded that “if we ignore the customer, they will go away!” We all need to have patience, but that’s easier said than done when you have no idea when or why the check hasn’t arrived. If my comments offended anyone, I'm sorry - they were not intended to do that. And for the record, when you start comparing people who like their Flex radios to wife beaters, it's time to get a check-up from the neck up!

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Walt - KZ1F

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Um, can we have the names and contact info for your kids? I bet they'd disagree. What so many people do not understand, writing software is not like building a tree house or any kind of house. Writing software is largely a learning experience. Depending on one's experience they venture into the project with some knowledge of where they are heading and some tools in their tool belt. How much knowledge they have and the number of tools in their tool belt is just the beginning. You never say date certain when the journey will be accomplished. Golden Triangle, you've got resources (people), you've got tasks (features or bugs) and you have time. You can set any two, but you can't set the third. And that is never set the third. Back in the 70's they did research into the number of bug-free non comment lines of code could be written by one person per day. It was something like 20. That was a long time ago and, frankly, I'm not sure that was even bug-free LOC. It may have been, it was an embarrassingly low number.   Over the years the tools have gotten better, but that number is still going to be embarrassingly low. The reason people make $125k (and that is a very high end person) is because you can't take someone off the street, give them an SDK and tell them to 'have at it'. It takes decades to get really good. And it is still an embarrassingly low number.

The expectations on this board have no semblance to reality.
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Steve W6SDM

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Burt didn't live 30 miles from the nearest traffic light.
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Burt Fisher

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I had imperfections as a father but breaking promises wasn't one of them. Walt you are making a case I do not dispute, but try telling me why you should promise/suggest or whatever you want to call it and not deliver? If you don't give out a date no one will fault you for not serving up something you never promised/suggested or set as a hop.
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Walt - KZ1F

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@Rob, this is why I have said in the past, the negative banter on this board is against the self interest we all share. So, let's discuss this open source phenomenon. Yes, it can be great but it also IS a huge challenge. As I said previously, it takes a long time for a developer to get 'good'. Open source projects are done as an act of love. All sorts of experience levels show up. People generally aren't paid. Someone has to commit the changes of others and take philosophical ownership of the direction of the software. There is no guarantee a person really good for several months, got into what the code actually was doing, would be there tomorrow or ever again. It's very hard to keep control of it and, just look at some of the dead projects on Apache, unpaid people tend to move on ...paid people tend to move on, not nearly as frequently as unpaid. If you want to get stuff built by the lowest bidder (on the planet), go to Walmart. I'll be honest, one of the reasons I bought the 6000 is because it was made in the USA. I suspect (hope) many others did as well. How many radios, or TVs or toasters are made in this country. Carly Fiorina, while head of HP, said, "Many people think we are moving projects to India. That's not our long term goal, we are moving to China. I've been gainfully employed in the software development field for 43 years. It is much different now that it was even 15 years ago. The bulk of Millennials that entered this field will almost assuredly not finish in it. When given an opportunity to buy an outstandingly good product built in America, supporting American workers, that is a huge draw. Is it unfailing love, no. It is still a quality product, made right here, and it's getting better. Flex is moving the ball in the right direction. If they went out of business tomorrow, wouldn't the radio be just as good then as it is today? But they aren't going out of business tomorrow. They have plans to make this radio even better. Will there be a Flex 7000 series? I suspect so. Will the 6000 series stop working the day the sell their first 7000, no, my 1500 still works. My TS-530SP still works, even though I'd forgotten how to tune it (there's an app for that). Computers: People don't not buy a computer today because there will be a better one tomorrow. There will always be a better one tomorrow. According to ARRL Labs and Sherwood Labs we all own probably the best Amateur Radio on the market. So, what is the complaint here? Maybe we won't see WAN remote this year... That will be moving the ball further yet but Howard, Stu, Amir (4X6TT), Barry Baines and more are already using their Flex radios remotely. It is an outstandingly good radio and it is getting better...relax
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DrTeeth

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I also bought into Flex as it is not made in India or China <shudder>.
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Walt - KZ1F

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@Burt, I would not have given a date certain. I don't believe Flex did. I believe at their Dayton dinner (that I did not attend) it was more a case of 'here is what we are aiming for". That someone took that to the bank, is more the fault of the listener than the speaker. I would have said, 'such and such, not before 3rd quarter or 2016. But I am not there and it is incredibly easy to Monday morning quarterback esp when you don't know all the facts. I did not take what they said as 'date certain' for two reasons, 1) I don't believe they said that and, 2) I know better. However, it is what they were aiming for, shooting at. I don't have an inside track with the folks in Austin. I've had several conversations with Steve, but that's conversations I had with Steve. I suspect, based on what I've heard on this board, we will see two things going forward, 1) no date certain ever, and 2) every 30 days or 60 days or 90 days we'll see something. Again, golden triangle. Maybe it'll be a fixed bug, maybe a new feature, maybe a fixed bug AND a new feature. I suspect they will go out of their way to not leave any impression this feature will be born on this date. You know, 9 women, one month. Again, moving the ball. As Gerald so eloquently said, they are trying to run a company and give themselves and staff a living wage.  Dude, feel good that you did your part. While I suspect they don't want to offend any of us. I hope none of them stay awake at night worrying about what Burt, or Walt, or Stu, or.... might have our nose out of joint about. You will all be thrilled with 1.4. In six months we'll all laugh at this.

OK, so now can I be an Elmer too? :-)
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Burt Fisher

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If I told a customer that I was building a computer for them and I was aiming for March 31, what date do you think they would expect the computer? If I thought it would be ready March 31, I would tell them to expect April 7th. By the way it's snowing here again.
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Bill -VA3WTB

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Ok Burt I think everyone knows the time line did not work out the way they had hoped and they fully explained why. OK? So where do we go from here?, what do you want?
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Burt Fisher

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I want them to do exactly what they are now doing, no more dates. I hope see 1.4 before Christmas, that will suit me fine.
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Bill -VA3WTB

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Me too Burt, as Gerald just said they have moved to another project all ready and he is almost ready to give his approval.
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Jay -- N0FB, Elmer

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Burt...I have a fictious scenario for you:  
You are the new owner of Flex Radio Systems.  You have worked with your engineering team on version 10.1.  The release is going to be very challenging.  With all the appropriate padding added from what your engineers tell you, you decide to post a no guarantee road map with a date a year out.  This so your customers are kept in the loop of what your company is up to.

A year passes and your engineers tell you some upsetting news.  They have found a serious flaw in their development direction for this release.  They tell you that they can complete a "release" on time, however the performance of the release would be awful and it would be full of bugs.  Your engineering team offers an alternative.  They could rip out some major pieces of code which is causing the performance problems and then test it appropriately.  The problem with this route is that it will take 3-4 months longer than expected.  You will miss your roadmap date.

Now you as the Owner of Flex Radio must decide:  Do you release the software which you know is going to perform poorly and is also riddled with bugs.  If you go this route, you know your company's reputation for producing great products will be wrecked.  On the other hand, you could instead bite-the-bullet and let your customers know that the development of the release is going to take significantly longer than originally expected.  However, by taking the extra time, the release will perform much better than any current releases and will be very stable to boot.  With this tact, you will have a few who will complain about timelines, but your reputation for building great amateur radio solutions will remain in tact.  You will also have built a great foundation for future releases.

Burt, you are sitting in the command chair.  Those are your choices.  What do you choose?  (By the way...no fair changing the conditions of the scenario.  That would be Monday Morning Quarterbacking!)
(Edited)
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Burt Fisher

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I delay the release and tell them of the scenario you described BEFORE THE EXPECTED DATE of release. When I had a due date for a student project if they had a reason for a delay, I considered it as long as the reason was expressed before the due date. Late homework was tossed in the trash.
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DrTeeth

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Spot on Burt. That is exactly how to handle something like this.
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Walt - KZ1F

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Burt, they actually did precisely that. Greg or Gerald said it would be a month late (mgmt) then Steve corrected them and said 3 months. Then Steve, followed by Greg or Gerald said the R word. Anyone in software knows what the R word means. Anyone who could actually look at the code (Flexlib) much less the radio (Linux code) itself could do the math and pretty much know what they were saying. Anyway, chill dude.
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Walt - KZ1F

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Burt, they actually did precisely that. Greg or Gerald said it would be a month late (mgmt) then Steve corrected them and said 3 months. Then Steve, followed by Greg or Gerald said the R word. Anyone in software knows what the R word means. Anyone who could actually look at the code (Flexlib) much less the radio (Linux code) itself could do the math and pretty much know what they were saying. Anyway, chill dude.
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Jay -- N0FB, Elmer

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Burt...I, as acting teacher for this test, assign you the grade of "F" for not following instructions.  You were told not to change the parameters of the scenario.  
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Burt Fisher

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Walt us the "R" word. Jay how did I change the parameters?
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Ken - NM9P

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This whole subject line is very old, like pit bulls fighting over a slipper already ripped apart. It serves no purpose other than continued venting of frustrations already addressed multiple times by FRS, alpha testers, et. al.

How many times must we flagellate this deceased equine before it is regarded as sadistic animal cruelty?

Why don't we just go play with our radios and wait until it arrives? Then we may actually have something worthwhile to discuss.
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Walt - KZ1F

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Um, because it is Sunday and I try hard not to compete with the masses to work DX on the weekends. It's similar to not shopping the Friday after T-Day. I was re-architecting SSDR but since Flex is already doing that, I can either redo the UI or do this. I chose do this. However, I did work Malawi (again on different band) and Estonia..
(Edited)
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Walt - KZ1F

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And I just worked Solomon Is. almost 9,,000 miles away. Yeah, maybe that was me and the radio. :-) Actually I did an alert in HRD a couple of weeks ago for this...I am still waiting on the email from HRD robot. But they are in the log on 15. Working DX is so cool when there are no jammers or freq police.
(Edited)
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Bill -VA3WTB

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Hi Ken, your right, but I wonder if is really from frustration, it could be an agenda. Why do we even reply to this type of post, lets just let it go...
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KY6LA - Howard, Elmer

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@BURT and all the others who have no idea about writing software


You keep on MISSING THE POINT.....

Flex did NOT PROMISE A DELIVERY DATE

Flex published a RoadMap with best Guessimated Dates -  NOT PROMISED DATES


No one in his right mind in the software business would ever promise an exact delivery date when INVENTING an entirely new product.. for that matter even simple modifications of existing codes by very experienced codes always take much longer than even the most experienced predictions.

Of course you guys all got your wish.. as Flex will likely never again give best guestimated dates in the future.. software updates will be released when they are ready...
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Walt - KZ1F

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Gee Howard, I could have sworn I said that. I will add one thing to what you said..."nor should they"
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Walt - KZ1F

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Gee Howard, I could have sworn I said that. I will add one thing to what you said..."nor should they"
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Burt Fisher

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I accept the word promise never came from Flex but when you say, "suggest", "expect", "hope", "goal",  they ought to know in dealing with hams it evolves into, "promise."
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DrTeeth

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Burt, those words do not just apply to hams. Politicians use the same language as they know what people will hear will not be what they said.

I am NOT suggesting that FRS did this for a moment before anybody thinks I intended that.
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Bill -VA3WTB

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Burt I think Gerald get's the point here, any remark of a goal or hope has not been good, but with all this aside, it has not prevented people from enjoying their radios. This update is not the radio, just an feature update.
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Walt - KZ1F

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Howard, not so. There are people in the 'software' industry that are notorious for promising dates, sales and marketing. Then mgmt gets all bent out of shape when the people doing the work can't deliver on S&M dates because they have to explain to the board why development missed a date.
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DrTeeth

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@ Bill
With an SDR, surely the update IS the radio?
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Walt - KZ1F

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Even in an Agile environment there is now a MVP, minimum viable product. Of course that is a perturbation of Agile but just goes to show, S&M love their dates.

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Bill -VA3WTB

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Yes Howard, your right also I think, Flex was wrong and missed, but there are those just waiting for them to miss a date so they could carry on like this.
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Walt - KZ1F

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Hmmm. With the exception of one, maybe two comments. This one is pretty tame Bill. There have been others that had gotten downright nasty, which is why I don't subscribe to this board any more. 
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Burt Fisher

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I doubt any Flex owner wanted any reason to be in this situation, nor did the company. I believe Flex made every reasonable effort.
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Bill -VA3WTB

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I know Burt, but if we stand back and look at all this, it is not a big deal. We have a radio with working software and it works very well, most people really are enjoying the radio just as it is. We are talking about a software upgrade, that's all.

I tell ya when it comes out and people see how stable it is and see how the performance has more than doubled all of this will be forgotten.
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Walt - KZ1F

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Bill, I believe I said that too.
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James Whiteway

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Well, after reading all this, I'm DEFINITELY not giving a release date for James' Super Duper "Do it ALL" SDR software package for the 6000 Series! In fact, I'm not reveling any details of it's advanced features that take the 6000 Series radios to unimaginable heights of operating ease and "Flex-ability" (sorry about the pun there).
   Too bad too, I was so excited about getting all the rave reviews and feedback on this up and coming program. But, that's all gone by the wayside now!
james
WD5GWY

(just a little something to lighten the mood a bit?)

 

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Jay / NO5J

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James
Don't start lying now, claiming you never promised anything, What is taking so long? Its been over 44 minutes, You have to keep your promises, or your a lying, liar doodie bug. Why anyone so Rigid in their thinking, would even bother trying something that has "FLEX" written all over it is a mystery to "THEM" Never the Less you PROMISED!
If you'd only be as Flexible as you claim you are, you'd admit you promised and failed to deliver on it. You'd tell everyone that you lied, and I'm right. But your going to have to promise that I'm right, and promise that you lied, and that I'm right. You know that I'm right,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT! ...
 
...

... IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!,IM RIGHT!

 I'm weird too.
73, Jay - NO5J
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James Whiteway

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Yes you are Jay.......WEIRD!!!! 
And I'll have to consult my legal counsel for advice on how to handle the rest of your statement. ( can you spell libel ? )
:-)

james
WD5GWY
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Jay / NO5J

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Oh so now you think I can't Speil. And I'm right about that too. 

[this is Chuckles]""[a clown, peeping back at :-)]  

73, Jay - NO5J
(Edited)
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James Whiteway

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Oh I "might" have promised something, but, clearly, you are mistaken if it was an exact release date. Maybe, I said I'd be testing my "to die for" (or to pay for) software package soon and might even release it one day soon.
Sounds kind of like a politician doesn't it?  
hehehe

james
WD5GWY
(Edited)
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Jay / NO5J

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I wanna see it, I wanna see the source too, you have my Vote sir. 

73, Jay - NO5J
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Bill -VA3WTB

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Ok that's it I'm selling my flex, Because of a late feature update. I am going back to my old radio, at least with that I won't have to wait for updates, there aren't any. Looks like I will have to cut back on contest as it hears way out past the bandpass and all the stations sound like mumble jumble. It was taking too much of my time anyways. Oh and I can only use it certain hours because the receiver is so noisy. Yup nothing like the good old days,
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Jay / NO5J

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Why don't we all just pretend?

They do!

73, Jay - NO5J
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Tim - W4TME, Customer Experience Manager

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Official Response
To all who posted on this thread.

Normally, I would have considered closing this thread earlier than now, as the tenor of the replies had taken a very negative and personal tone, but I know this is a very emotional and passionate topic for some and I did not want those who have an opinion either in favor or one that is dissenting to feel that they did not have an opportunity to express it.  However, I do feel that now it has fully run its course and that no further constructive value can be gained by letting it continue.  Therefore I am closing it at this time.

I recommend that everyone take a moment and remember that this is a hobby and that one of the primary tenets of this Community is to respect and treat one another with dignity, no matter their opinions.  After reading over this thread, I believe we all have an opportunity to improve in this regard. Sometimes it helps to walk away and re-read your words with an eye on who may be reading them before hitting the submit button.
(Edited)

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