You’ve lost me already. What’s this got to do with marketing? That’s more about packaging. Even if we think we have a product/project (don’t mention Fichte…) that needs marketing, who is it aimed at? How would you describe the marketplace? How would you segment the marketplace? Which distros already occupy those segments (e.g. new users = ubuntu mostly) etc. etc. etc.
I suggest that whoever is moderating this forum contacts the openSUSE project manager and ask he/she to produce a post answering similar questions that may have been considered as they developed the deliverables. That document could be pinned to the start of the forum as a starting point for discussion - something to focus on.
You raise some interesting points. The distinction between marketing and branding or packaging is somewhat nebulous, I think, and I hope you’re not trying to call me out for dragging people off topic, what with there being two threads in this forum.
But the one about the target market is indeed important, and kind of why I started the thread. In the absence of more information about brand identity and vision (information that we may well not get from Novell, considering how secretive companies can be about these arcane arts), I’m trying to gauge whether such a move would be considered, by the users, overly silly for the product.
Obviously I don’t think it would, otherwise I wouldn’t have mentioned it. I think it’s a distro targeted primarily at the ‘it just works’ crowd, who want powerful, up to date software, but don’t want to deal with the quirks and complexities of Fedora or Arch. I think strong, coherent branding can attract and help to retain new users. Humour can definitely help - if it doesn’t detract from the appearance of professionalism - and it’s always been a part of linux.
If you actually read the whole thread it makes some interesting points. At some point someone raises about fixed timelines(Perhaps it does cause problems, either way the fors and against are in that list)
As for Arch that really isn’t comparable I can give you several reasons, but lets leave it at if enterprise like then Arch isn’t the choice.
The mailing list post I highlighted in the above thread to me is exactly what Suse should be. I just question is it? I just feel sometimes choices made are developer choices and not what users that don’t want what Fed provides, would choose.*
I wasn’t calling you out for anything in particular, and definitely not your topic. I suppose I was being a bit lazy by not starting a new thread, and I didn’t see the point of the other thread. However, given the forum title, it sounded a bit “cart-before-horse”. I suspect you would meet some opposition from “development” because generally users are familiar with wizards. You would probably need to explain what benefit accrues from the change. How can you do that if you don’t know which market segment(s) the product is aimed at, and why you need to differentiate from the norm?
Actually there is a lot of difference in scope between marketing, branding, and packaging. All that reptile stuff is packaging to help differentiate the brand from other brands. I don’t know what the forum owner meant by openSUSE marketing, hence my suggestion.
I don’t see why the openSUSE project manager (not Novell - that’s a different brand) would be reluctant to share his view. If he were to say “all segments”, I would be very wary, it’s impossible and unfocused unless you have lots and lots of resource (not the case these days).
I have seen reviews that criticize openSUSE for trying to be good at everything and not succeeding. Some say use openSUSE if you need to do complex networking, for example. Ok, we need to understand what the reality is…
FeatherMonkey; Yes, that thread does raise some interesting points between the flak. And I think I agree with you about the apparent purpose of SuSE - whether it is fulfiling that is beyond the scope of this debate. I think Arch is a legitimate comparison for home desktop users, even if they aren’t the primary target. Linux is, after all, a bottom-up way of looking at things, and success comes from a groundswell of popular acceptance - partly driven by enterprise deployment, but significantly also, even for the more enterprise led distros, by the subjective whims of computer literate individuals choosing distros for their home systems, and that affecting their general support and popularity.
consused; Thanks for the clarification. What is the point? That is indeed the question. There’s no point to the gecko if you take a totally functional perspective, so it comes, as you say, down to product differentiation; branding. I think for the market niche that openSUSE seems to be aiming at, the idea of automation and intelligent setup is key - tools like YaST being the obvious example. This idea, though perhaps frivolous, would at least play up that strength, and I think you could avoid confusing people if you did it carefully. Maybe the first lizard would wear a wizard’s hat?
The real difficulty with changing from Wizard is that Wizard is intended to convey someone who does little bits of magic for you - like tidying your bedroom - so that you don’t have to do it yourself.
I don’t see a problem in principle with using an alternative to Wizard but it would have to convey something similar.
We use daemon (or a minor god) to describe certain autonomous processes but I cannot think of a classical equivalent to a wizard - the nearest thing would be magus from which we get magic because the mathematical astronomy at which they excelled initially appeared like magic to the Greeks. Later the Greeks adopted their system; hence 60 minutes to the hour, 24 hours to the day and 360 degrees to the circle.
Perhaps there is a character from the culture of another continent who could fit the bill.
Like a brand name lost to everyday use, Wizard has lost connections to magic. At least as it relates to software. It is just the way an automatic thing happens. So, Lizard is ok by me and would be used primarily “inside” the community.
OT: who pronounces daemon as die-mon vs. pronouncing it as demon?
Just re-read FeatherMonkey’s post there and the link therein. I feel very comfortable with that positioning of openSUSE but with questions and concerns and I agree with the above comment about scope of this debate.
FeatherMonkey’s post re the mailing-list link and comments about it could make a useful starting post to debate in its own right, here in this Marketing forum. Just a suggestion, but I wonder if Feather Monkey would be prepared to start a new thread with that??
Maybe the first lizard would wear a wizard’s hat?
Why not? To keep to the lizard theme, he could easily be dressed as a wizard to make a good icon. Then you have to answer the question about its name. Do you call it Wizard, Lizard, or something else? Picture the icon as if it were on the desktop. I would immediately recognize it as a Wizard i.e. a helpful utility. What about you??
Hope that brings us back on both tracks as suggested…
@ Prexy: again, I draw your attention to the fact that there are two threads in this forum. I think this one can meander in whichever direction it chooses.
I actually quite like the Dragon idea - I will mention that (duly credited) if I post on openfate, and having met no anguished cries of “Don’t you dare do that to my distro!”, it looks like I might well do so, to get the discussion going if nothing else.
Personally, I don’t see the “Wizard = Helpful Software” connection as much more than an arbitrary convention. I can see the difficulty with people sat down in front of a running system, and wanting to search for something to configure things for them - but then, I suppose you could just have a help page linked from a search for ‘Wizard’ explaining what a Lizard does.
With new users, if I sat down as a Windows refugee and set up my system, and a box appeared saying;
“Do you want to run the printers lizard?
This lizard will help you set up your newly detected printer.
I don’t think I’d be thrown into paroxysms of confusion.
In fact, they could all wear wizard’s cloaks and hats, and you could call them whatever you pleased. They could even be referred to in shorthand as Lizards but officially called Wizard Lizards (Lizard Wizards?) to completely eliminate the ambiguity - it would still stamp them with the distinctive ‘SuSE’ identity.
I agree that you can change perception (over time). My desktop analogy was rather limited. It’s more the “context”, as someone else here pointed out, in which the wizard word is understood. In an IT context it’s understood to mean a helper/utility.
So given that, but only my opinion and it just flows/sounds better, Lizard Wizards gets my vote;).