(c) 1998 Andrew C. Stone. All Rights Reserved.

What with the bitching & moaning recently on many Macintosh and Rhapsody mailing lists and newsgroups about the restructuring of Apple's third party Developer support into
Apple Developer Connection, I was reminded of a story related by Georges I. Gurdjieff in connection with the charging of money for spiritual teachings.

"Oh yes, the master said, if the teachings were free, no one would pay attention - what value would the seeker feel they have? Yet make them give their hard earned money, and they pay a great deal of attention - for now they are invested, and have to be sure to get their money's worth!."

If the price is too low, then Apple can not be guaranteed that those who sign up for it will seriously kick butt and whip out the apps needed for the continued success of the brand. This is a waste of resources. If it's too high however, then the next basement killer app might never manifest. In keeping with what I said last week about "Free", I'm pleased to see that the "Online" program is completely free, which provides an entry point for wannabe developers.

I think the main point to keep in mind is how much SUN and Windows developers are paying for tools, subscriptions and tech support. Just from my own short forays into Java, Solaris and some NT coding that had to be done, I know those environments cost more than the "Select" program, and after spending all that money, you are still left with poorly integrated tools and difficult to use API's!

The $500 annual fee for the "Select" program is still a deal, because for that manageable price, you get the best development system currently available on any platform. And besides, once we're making money from selling Rhap apps, even the $3500 for "Premium" makes sense for a software shop whose focus is the Macintosh & Rhapsody/Yellow Box. The Premium package also includes the $1050 ticket to WWDC, which is one excellent way to guarantee full attendance, at least according to Gurdjieff!

Time to go to DevCon 5...