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Do we have to wait for a shooting star?!

Thread began 1/20/2010 5:11 am by tone397472 | Last modified 9/11/2011 7:09 pm by tone397472 | 8131 views | 49 replies


Originally Said By: Ray Borduin
  We appreciate the feedback.

What is it that you are trying to do? Perhaps I can provide some direction.  

I sell high ticket items and want to give my customers the ability to divide their payments up over two credit cards if they want to. There is a query trail in the eCart forum already, and I was also instructed to put it on the wishlist. You can check there.

Originally Said By: Ray Borduin
  We concentrate a lot of time and resources to documentation and have a primary interest in making things easier.  

OK. This is where there is a danger of things getting very silly, because this is not about what you ARE doing, but about what you are not doing. I saw a thread in which I thought I could usefully contribute and help someone else to make their point. Saying things like this .....

Originally Said By: Ray Borduin
  Unfortunately we don't always succeed, but we will keep trying to do better. If you continue to use our tools you will see they continually get both more functional and easier to use and in the meantime more and more documentation will become available.  

..... does not help in this situation. I am not trying to be perverse, but you cannot expect <insert> ME </insert> to sit here writing things endlessly. I have better things to do, and if people don't want to listen I'd rather go off and do those. I am trying to speak clearly and lucidly about a major difficulty that I have had with your products, and from the nature of the queries and frustrations I have observed on these forums, I am not the only one.

None of this ...

Originally Said By: Ray Borduin
  This is the nature of our products and what they do. We take something that might not be possible for a new web developer and make it as easy as possible. We then write documentation describing what we have done. As we get feedback from our customers we try to make it easier and easier and write documentation to address the specific problems they are facing.  

..... is particularly helpful in this situation, because you are just quoting the company line and not really listening to what I or the originator of this thread is trying to say.

Originally Said By: Ray Borduin
  Adding an add to cart button can insert up to 3 distinct pieces of code onto your page.  

OK. This is where things perhaps could get more interesting, and where I could perhaps begin to understand this 'toolset' mentality.

Originally Said By: Ray Borduin
  1) It adds the cart object onto the very top of the page in the form of two include files.
There is one include file that is named after the cart object you created. It contains all of the information from that interface. Your columns, calculations, tax, shipping, discounts, etc. , and another definition file that contains functions defined to be used with the cart. The defintion file never changes except when you update ecart.  

And where, exactly, do you tell people that?
Now ... what I am trying to say is ... why not also have a small demo page or follow-along-session that gives people a blank page in code view. You then ask the user to do blah. And you also tell them exactly what code it is going to insert, and why.

That way, they can build up something simple and functional that follows your company philosophy and also outlines exactly what is going on.

Originally Said By: Ray Borduin
  It will also add a line of code to repopulate the cart object created in the include file from the session or cookie depending on your cart settings. At that point you have an eCart object with your settings that is populated with an array of Items that persists through the session or cookie.  

Can you not just sit back and take a deep breath and just think to yourself a moment quite how much gobbledy-gook that is? REALLY!!!! And so then a poor user comes here, tries to explain that something is wrong, and they get zip by the way of help, because they cannot explain the problem clearly in ways that you can understand. Whereas ... if you had a demo or tutorial that took them step-by-step through what you were doing, they would at least be familiar with the concept that somewhere or other on the page that is troubling them, there might be a line or two of automatically inserted code they need to isolate.

Here's a very big problem, you see.
YOU know that. But then YOU designed these products.
We, many of your customers, do not know that.
Instead, we start finding that the only way that we can fix our problems -- because these forums are about as much help as a skimpy piece of dental floss to a haemorrhaging elephant -- is to go out and buy a PHP book and try to figure out what on earth is going on through those many lines of code.

Originally Said By: Ray Borduin
  As part of the object it also adds a chunk of code to redirect to another page just above the <html>, but below all other server side code. This is added so that we can do multiple actions above and if you were to set multiple redirects it would still only redirect once after all of the actions complete because it uses this redirect code instead of redirecting inline where it might disrupt an overall process.  

Can you not even begin to imagine how incredibly useless to me all of that is when I am in trouble and just want my software product to WORK. I bought it because there was an implied guarantee that it would work right off the shelf, and when it doesn't, I find out that it is actually just a toolbox, and that I am supposed to have a pretty shrewd idea what it is trying to do anyway, so that I can give it a helping hand if it starts going in the wrong direction. Well ... a helping hand is NOT the same as doing.

Originally Said By: Ray Borduin
  It will trigger off of the button submit event, so you will see it checks if $_POST['addtocartbuttonname'] is set.  

Please understand this. I had ABSOLUTELY NO IDEA what $_POST or a superglobal variable was until I bought your products and was forced to find out. I am not trying to blow my trumpet here, but I am a post-graduate student from Oxford University so I have a few neurons that are functioning. I had to sit up day and night and go on a crash-programming course to try to figure out what on earth was going on in the pages of code your product was making so that I could use them. That was NOT why I bought them. I bought them because your materials gave the impression that everything would work just like that off the shelf. It doesn't. What WebAssist in fact wants is to create a partnership between me as the user and it as a company. WebAssist in fact wants me to have a fairly shrewd idea what I want to achieve in the first place so that it can save me a little bit of time in doing what I want to do anyway. That is just fine, and there is still a market for products of that nature. But that is NOT the impression I got from perusing your web site. If, on the other hand, you had warned me what was about to happen by showing me what it was you were trying to achieve and letting me see the code build up in the process, then it would have been different. I might well have bought the products anyway, because learning PHP is kind of fun in its own way, but I don't have the time. I have a business to run. I bought your products because they promised me that I would not have had to spend the time I have in fact spent trying to get them to work. All in all, the information I got has been valuable because it is mine and permanent. But I consider it in breach of the express and implied agreement displayed from those videos.

You are still making nice products and push comes to shove, I would probably have bought them anyway. But my expectations would have been different.

As the original poster tried to imply, what is awry here is a little bit of company philosophy. You are not selling catch-all tools for the woefully ignorant. You are selling toolboxes for those who know a little bit about what they are doing, would like to find out more, but in the mean time just want a bit of time saved. Nothing wrong with that, but don't pretend one thing when you are doing the other.

I hope I do not come over all aggravated because that is not my intention. I am just writing fast and I have better things to do, to be honest, than write things like this and I just want it done.

Bye now.

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