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RiScript in delivery delay shame

By Chris Williams. Published: 29th Apr 2006, 23:10:35 | Permalink | Printable

When silence is not golden

RiScript logoRiScript customers have spoken of their frustration with contacting the software's developers, and in at least one case, had difficulty in receiving the product they paid for. Emails have been known to go unanswered for weeks, while others have had to wait patiently for unlock codes for RiScript's copy protection system.

RiscPC user Charles Duckworth said he paid for a new copy of the PDF authoring package nearly a fortnight ago, but has yet to be given a working copy of the software. On Thursday evening, Charles was personally emailed a copy of the product - within hours of drobe.co.uk contacting the RiScript developers Roeland van den Bos and Jeroen Medema to hear more about the situation.

Charles is now awaiting a key to satisfy the anti-piracy system in RiScript. Usually, punters download the software from the RiScript website and are sent an unlock code in a separate email. After the initial silence from the developers, Charles feared the pair had ceased trading and he would have to wrangle a refund from PayPal.

He said: "It's been about 10 days since I paid, and two since I was emailed the files. I did not get the download code - Roeland sent them directly, but without the unlock codes - the files produce an error saying 'Licence error 9'. I have written again, but I've had no reply.

"I was hoping to work on things [with RiScript] this weekend, but there are plenty of other things to keep me busy."

The RiScript website is registered in the name of Roeland - his address and a contact telephone number can be found here. RiScript's authors were unavailable for comment.

Their website reads: "We have been developing RiScript for over 15 years now. After being available commercially via several distributors in the past, RiScript is now available directly from its developers."

RiScript 5 was released to much fanfare in August last year. The latest version, 5.02, was made available during Christmas 2005, and there are plans for CMYK sprite support and text searching in the next release.


RiScript website

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Do we really need an Anti-Piracy system on a small platform of users like RISC OS?


 is a RISC OS UserSawadee on 30/4/06 5:57AM
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Unfortunately the answer is probably yes because sales of even the most successful software are small compared with other platforms. Lossing even a few sales due to piracy hurts. I think with RISC OS this becomes more personal because of the small size of the market and because many people actually know the developers.

Piracy seems to be social acceptable to some people and that is a real shame. Lets make piracy unacceptable and help those people who spend their time and effort developing for RISC OS.

 is a RISC OS Userknutson on 30/4/06 6:58AM
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In reply to knutson:

RISC OS does not, however, exist in a vacuum. Add too much heavy-handed copy protection and you (a) remove one reason for avoiding MS Windows and (b) create a very powerful reason for switching to GNU/Linux.

To compete with free you need to have a superior product, and if copy protection gets in the way of that then you loose.

 is a RISC OS Usergdshaw on 30/4/06 8:14AM
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Software protection in the RISC OS world is doubly counter productive and pointless. Firstly in such a small market, any tales of inconvience is going travel rapidly by word of mouth and negatively effect sales. Secondly with a far greater proportion of knowledgeable users than other platforms, any protection will quickly be bypassed.

We all know that at some time or other we've come across non legit software, but as the RISC OS market is quite mature and we aren't all still poor students, we are willing to buy software which is useful. But if the legit version with copy protection is more hassle than the cracked one, its very unlikely someone will bother legitimising it.

 is a RISC OS Userdruck on 30/4/06 9:26PM
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Copy protection on software only inconveniences the people who paid for the software. I pre-ordered Doom 3 for example and was able to download a cracked version 2 days before my CD arrived in the post. The cracked version ran from hard drive but the 'protected' one required the CD to be inserted at all times which was a pain in the ass. I had the same problem with Red Alert. With VRPC when I disabled an ethernet net card from my laptop because I was using a wireless one VRPC refused to run.

 is a RISC OS Userdansguardian on 1/5/06 1:27AM
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My father (Peter Griffith) also bought RiSript. After the download failed, we tried to contact the authors. Only when we posted on usenet, we got a reply, with the attached software. However even though we tried to contact them again, we still have not received the licence-files, so we can't use it. It has been about half a year since we last heard from them.

 is a RISC OS UserJGZimmerle on 1/5/06 12:29PM
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Perhaps I'm in the minority but my RiScript experience has been fine. The download id arrived promptly, I was able to download the most recent update and the program has run fine on the Iyonix here.

Nonetheless, I agree that protected software needs to be protected in a way that is transparent (and timely) to the paying user. As dansguardian points out, it's often the paying customers that suffer most and that can't be good for business.

 is a RISC OS UserTonyStill on 1/5/06 1:07PM
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druck : I completely agree having been given a copy of Impression 2.19 just 4 hours after it's release san dongle (and it worked)

 is a RISC OS UserNodoid on 1/5/06 1:11PM
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In reply to JGZimmerle: The license files have been sent to your father 19 december last year. Apparently, the license files have never arrived at your father's side, or they dissappeared. We will resend them in a minute. Something went wrong with sending the program (as more people have experienced); this has been automated (not by us!-) and sometimes it simply goes wrong. You have contacted us end of January, and we resolved the issue (so that's 3 month ago instead of 6).

 is a RISC OS UserJeroen on 1/5/06 4:24PM
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Also, as it is stated on the web-site: generating the license files is a process that is partially manually. Waiting for ten days is long (and beyond our goal). We will try to improve on that. If you have comments, you can send them to sales@riscript.nl.

 is a RISC OS UserJeroen on 1/5/06 4:27PM
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I accept the need for copy protection and just wish developers could learn from the example set by Spellings. I use Aemulor pro and Geminus and the protection is not intrusive.

 is a RISC OS Usercables on 2/5/06 1:42PM
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I have had problems with the Spellings system with DeskDebug. Unlike Aemulor and Geminus which are tried to a single Iyonix which is fair enough, it is likely that a developer will have a number of different machines to test code on. A debugger isn't much use if its tied to just the Iyonix, and a problem arrises on the Risc PC. Paying for two copies of something you can only use one at a time is not justifiable morally or financially.

Now Neil has been fair and given me a second licence code so I can use it on either of my machines, and I hope he will also do this for any other developers that have the same issue. But it did take a bit of prodding and inconvience to reach this arrangement, which has never been the case with any other RISC OS development tool I've used.

 is a RISC OS Userdruck on 2/5/06 4:33PM
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Okay, we have received the licence files now. The new version (we had v4.x before) looks very good indeed. :-)

 is a RISC OS UserJGZimmerle on 4/5/06 9:24PM
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