So here comes the Great Experiment. Software Support.
I’ve been a 19 year veteran of watching ESRI produce software. Probably 90% of my customers are ESRI based. The other 10% can’t afford a GIS system due to budget. As an ESRI Business Partner I convinced some of the 10% to make the investment. Over the last year I’ve been working with Open Source Software and have decided to branch out. So I dropped my ESRI Business Partner Status and I’m now working openly with Open Source GIS software and ESRI Software. As a GIS business I’m feeling a bit more robust than I was last year.I’m working with more data formats and working with databases (notably Postgresql/PostGIS) more. I’m also working with data – because no matter what you do with ArcGISOnline, or Web Maps, or whatever it’s the data that matters.
To that end I’ve been working on a support page with different options. As was often said in my favorite Chinese restaurant: If you don’t find something you like – we’ll make it.
QGIS has turned into my new favorite software package. So I’m now offering paid support for an open source software package. Some companies are hesitant to use Open Source GIS packages because you don’t have someone to call for support. If I fall back to the old 80/20 rule – I can argue QGIS can do about 80% of what ArcGIS does – in particular ArcView. There are things that are missing but they are few. So what do you get:
- Cost is $500 dollars for up to 5 installs (computers) of QGIS (How will I know – I won’t).
- Newsletter and Access to the support website
- Email Support
- Phone Support during core business hours
- Includes a discount on our Introduction to QGIS Class.
- Time Frame is one year.
More importantly some of this money goes back to QGIS. So your use of the software is going to help the QGIS progress and develop. This is something I’m still feeling out and working on so there will be changes along the way.
Anyway – let the fun begin.