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press releases -- comments

    It seems that Symbolics is now competing explicitly with consulting
    organizations, whose bread-and-butter is software development contracts.
    In the past, we have been told by Symbolics that their resources are
    limited and therefore we must be patient with their slower support of
    older machines' software, for example. Is there any reason to question
    where the resources come from, while our our patience is being tested in
    waiting for bug fixes, ECO tapes, new releases, and good, old-fashioned
    software support?

    After years of questions as to whether Symbolics can continue to develop
    and support the complex array of software they deliver, does Symbolics
    now have the resources to both do that much better (as is needed, as
    users often state) 1and0 provide the highest level of consulting services
    (so as to not contribute to bad press about the capabilities of
    symbolics processing)?

As a past member of the consulting group at Symbolics, I think the new
emphasis they are putting on high quality consulting services is nothing
but positive, and is not at all likely to suck resources away from more
"fundamental" areas such as software support.  For one thing, consulting
directly generates profits, and hence (in principle) contributes to the
resource pool rather than draining it.  Also, the consulting staff has
not in the past consisted of developers or software supporters, but has
been a group specifically devoted to the consulting duties (including
technical support of the sales of consulting contracts).  Their results
have been quite impressive, especially considering their highly limited 
resources and a very small staff.

In a strict business sense, I think it is very wise of Symbolics to make
this kind of strategic move.  It's a wide-open area which will not only
generate profits on its own but new sales of hardware and good PR as
well, and this can only help the company - and indirectly, the existing
customer base.  By the way, I haven't felt my "patience being tested" in
the ways you mention - in fact, I think I'm seeing a positive trend in
software support responsiveness recently.

    In the new corporate culture of Symbolics, what is the future of older,
    long-time-dedicated users? 

I'd say it's a future in which you can expect to be listened to and to
have your input make a difference in the way Symbolics lays plans and
does business.  This to me is the most important positive aspect of the
changes in their corporate culture.