I’ll be giving gSync a try. Anyone tried it yet? I’ll post my feedback, but in the meantime, I invite you to share your thoughts.
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After using free software (as in freedom, but also gratis because I’m too cheap to pay) exlcusively for about 4 years, paying $20 for a small little application (gSync) seems ridiculous. Yet I remember when I thought that was a reasonable price.
-Dave, the frugal hacker
I place a certain amount of importance on synchronizing my calendars. Therefore, there is a perceived value in tools that can help me do that. I’m currently playing with a free/open source tool that attempts to help me here, and if I can make it work, I’ll use it. However, I’m already finding (after mucking with it for over an hour) that it has arbitrary limits, stupid configuration steps, and incomplete/inconsistent documentation (though it’s better than many other apps I use).
If I can save $65 (the cost of Spanning Sync) by mucking with this for a little longer, it’s worth it. If I find that gSync “just works” for $20, then I think that cost matches more closely with my perceived value. You also have to consider that I have a day job, consulting clients, and any free time that’s left is spent writing articles. If I can get the free tool to work in 2 hours, I’ll eat the cost of my time for that two hours. If it takes much longer than that, I just can’t justify the cost. This is why I’m constantly harping on open source developers to work on their documentation (if not their ease-of-deployment in general).
That said, I work in an environment that uses almost nothing but free software in production. Apache, BIND, MySQL, PostgreSQL, Linux, the entire GNU toolset, Python, PHP, Perl, Ruby, Drupal, Moodle, and at least 25 more things I’m surely forgetting.
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