Your thoughts on Money 2005?

After reading through the posts today, here are some of my thoughts on Money 
2005 and how to resolve some of the issues.

#1 MS should offer a 15 year anniversary edition of MS Money 98 that works 
on WinXP...

#2 Undo all the extras. Give us a Basic Edition product that allows us to 
balance the checkbook, manually download our QIF/OFX files, do a budget and 
add a calendar to remind us of bills...that's it. Remove the bloat that 
really makes MS 2005 slower and buggy.

#3 Allow a feature that will let us revert back to a former version. Sure, 
you tell us to backup our previous data, but that previous data becomes 
corrupted somehow.  I'd like to be able to try out a new version for a 
while, and if I don't like it, I should be able to export my MS 2005 file 
back into MS '98..with all new transactions going with it and not having to 
manually re-enter everything.

Yes, it is simple as 1-2-3!!!

Glenn B. 


0
2/22/2005 4:41:04 PM
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"Glenn B." <pkguy323@NOSPAMMyahoo.com> wrote in message
news:AgJSd.14607$uc.6787@trnddc09...
> After reading through the posts today, here are some of my thoughts on
Money
> 2005 and how to resolve some of the issues.
>
> #1 MS should offer a 15 year anniversary edition of MS Money 98 that works
> on WinXP...

So this will come out in 2013? BTW, M98 was the only other edition of M I
ever skipped. Among many other buggy things, the day it shipped it created
backup files that were almost certain to be larger than one diskette but it
didn't know how to do a diskette spanning backup.

> #2 Undo all the extras. Give us a Basic Edition product that allows us to
> balance the checkbook, manually download our QIF/OFX files, do a budget
and
> add a calendar to remind us of bills...that's it. Remove the bloat that
> really makes MS 2005 slower and buggy.

You are considering Investment Accounts bloat? Forecast Cash Flow? One
user's bloat is certainly some other user's one key feature. There may be
exceptional features which most users can do without, but M05 would indicate
that Microsoft knows the exceptions are virtually all of the "Advanced *"
features, since Most Users Prefer(tm) the dumbed-down "Essential *" ones.

> #3 Allow a feature that will let us revert back to a former version. Sure,
> you tell us to backup our previous data, but that previous data becomes
> corrupted somehow.  I'd like to be able to try out a new version for a
> while, and if I don't like it, I should be able to export my MS 2005 file
> back into MS '98..with all new transactions going with it and not having
to
> manually re-enter everything.

This can be easily dealt with--dual track the files/versions while you are
deciding. It is also likely a very daunting technical challenge and one that
would divert a huge amount of limited development resources from so many
other things the product needs. I hope they don't go work this one in
priority to all of the other things that need working. In the long term, you
probably needn't worry: the potential future Web Service won't have this
problem. They'll store your data on their web servers in whatever format
works for them and you'll neither need to know or care.


0
2/22/2005 5:37:14 PM
 DW> Most Users Prefer(tm) the dumbed-down "Essential *" ones.

Unless it's a sarcasm, I very much doubt that Microsoft has a 1% clue about 
what 1% of users want. I don't recall a single survey on this, do you? I'm 
sure though they know a lot about what MSN wants the users to want. And any 
wishful thinking, given the absence of real knowledge, and empowered by 
incompetence, soon becomes the belief and then confidence that it's 
objective. Money/Microsoft is not an exception: in today's world, you can 
see examples of it literally on every step - beliefs with no correlation to 
the reality or to the logic - just look around.

Vadim 

0
vrapp (55)
2/22/2005 8:53:14 PM
I do know that MS spend a lot of time and money dragging Joe Public in off 
the streets (well probably rather more scientifically selected) and sitting 
them down in front of a PC with Money and some tasks.

They wouldn't select us lot as we a) know too much and b) are too set in our 
ways! ;-)

-- 
Regards
Bob Peel,
Microsoft MVP - Money

For UK tips & fixes see
http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=fh;EN-GB;mny.
For wishes or suggestions see
http://register.microsoft.com/mswish/suggestion.asp
or for UK wishes http://www.microsoft.com/uk/support/money/feedback

I do not respond to any emails that I have not specifically asked for.

"Vadim Rapp" <vrapp@nospam.polyscience.com> wrote in message 
news:%23NbXICSGFHA.228@TK2MSFTNGP15.phx.gbl...
> DW> Most Users Prefer(tm) the dumbed-down "Essential *" ones.
>
> Unless it's a sarcasm, I very much doubt that Microsoft has a 1% clue 
> about what 1% of users want. I don't recall a single survey on this, do 
> you? I'm sure though they know a lot about what MSN wants the users to 
> want. And any wishful thinking, given the absence of real knowledge, and 
> empowered by incompetence, soon becomes the belief and then confidence 
> that it's objective. Money/Microsoft is not an exception: in today's 
> world, you can see examples of it literally on every step - beliefs with 
> no correlation to the reality or to the logic - just look around.
>
> Vadim 


0
Bob_Peel4015 (409)
2/22/2005 9:12:26 PM
They say it all over M05 with apparent sincerity.

I think that they truly wish all existing users preferred the dumbed-down 
stuff because that's where they are heading, our wishes be damned, and it 
would make the transition easier if we really did prefer it that way. I also 
suspect that there may be some component of what you say: if they repeat it 
enough, we might actually begin to believe it. What's the truth? That lie 
which is repeated most often?

To the extent that they have some factual basis for saying it, yes, I 
believe what Bob Peel wrote is true.

I think they'd dearly love for every person in the world who already has a 
computer, and everybody who doesn't yet have one but could get one, to latch 
onto the MSN advertising stream. Then they could charge more for the ads. 
Then they'd have this great revenue stream that they wouldn't have to do 
much to nurture but keep selling the ads. That's a whole lot easier, 
cheaper, less risky, and more sure than actually developing software. Do I 
blame them for this? Heck no. We'd all love to attach ourselves to a "free 
money" iv drip. Some of us, read: Microsoft, are just in a better position 
to do it than others: read: you and me. I also don't entirely blame them 
because I think their existing business model is probably unsustainable. 
Selling consumer software for barely the cost of the product you ship and 
then offering free support (no matter how good the product) is just a recipe 
to hemorrhage money, even if you can figure out how to get the regulars to 
buy that new CD every darned year.

I suspect they do a lot of research to this end. I bet they have research 
that says "managing my money" is a top five reason cited by a huge 
proportion of people who don't yet have one but could get one as to what 
might drive them to do it. I'll bet it polls even higher among people who 
already have a computer but can't really figure out what to do with it as to 
what they'd like to be able to do with it. I'll bet they also know that **if 
they could entice these people to actually do this rather than just say they 
would** how much time they could get access to these people's eyeballs for. 
They've certainly tumbled to how much more they could sell the ads for if 
they could target them based on knowing all there was to know about the 
viewer's financial and life situation--as the person who has access to our 
Money data surely would be able to do. (An interesting side question is why 
the people who say they'd like to use a computer to manage their money say 
it. There is research out there on some subjects that people say these 
things because they think it's what "smart people" (or popular or whatever) 
should say, and they want to seem smart, so they say it. It has nothing to 
do with their real gut reaction. Things like asking people if they intend to 
vote: the numbers way outstrip the behavior.)

So, this surely looks like the Pot Of Gold At The End Of The Rainbow to 
them.

But they haven't been able to tap it. Those of us who actually do use our 
computers to manage our money haven't exactly been playing along and looking 
at all the ads. Surely they know how many hits to the MSN properties linked 
to from Money there are per unit time as a function of the number of copies 
of Money in use. I'll bet the number is a whole lot lower than they keep 
hoping to make it. Worse, they aren't growing the user base. They surely 
know how many people get OEM Money licenses on new PCs, start it two or 
three times, never have the "light bulb moment" or find it actually requires 
typing (arrggh) or is not effortless, and never start it again.

So they go to figure out what's holding all these people back who say they'd 
like to use a computer to manage their money but don't. They invite 
grandmothers and teenagers and computer-phobes into their lab, show them 
Money, and ask what they like. Simple (or Essential, if you prefer) will win 
this race EVERY TIME. So, they conclude that SIMPLE is the only ticket left. 
It's like asking people who actually have no intent of working on their car 
what looks like the best tool in the toolbox to work on the car. They tell 
you the hammer because it looks, well, SIMPLE. So you conclude, if you want 
to sell more toolboxes to people who say they'd like to work on their cars, 
you'd best show them the hammer. Whether a hammer is actually useful for 
much serious car repair gets lost in the shuffle.

I can't claim all of this as original thought. See 
http://blogs.msdn.com/philipsu/archive/2004/07/01/170682.aspx for some 
insight.

"Vadim Rapp" <vrapp@nospam.polyscience.com> wrote in message 
news:%23NbXICSGFHA.228@TK2MSFTNGP15.phx.gbl...
> DW> Most Users Prefer(tm) the dumbed-down "Essential *" ones.
>
> Unless it's a sarcasm, I very much doubt that Microsoft has a 1% clue 
> about what 1% of users want. I don't recall a single survey on this, do 
> you? I'm sure though they know a lot about what MSN wants the users to 
> want. And any wishful thinking, given the absence of real knowledge, and 
> empowered by incompetence, soon becomes the belief and then confidence 
> that it's objective. Money/Microsoft is not an exception: in today's 
> world, you can see examples of it literally on every step - beliefs with 
> no correlation to the reality or to the logic - just look around. 


0
2/23/2005 3:16:00 AM
 DW> I also don't entirely blame them because I think their existing
 DW> business model is probably unsustainable. Selling consumer software for
 DW> barely the cost of the product you ship and then offering free support
 DW> (no matter how good the product) is just a recipe to hemorrhage money,
 DW> even if you can figure out how to get the regulars to buy that new CD
 DW> every darned year.

Um, no, not agreed. Microsoft makes many products, and it's real strength is 
in the broad coverage of the software market. If they were making only 
windows, or only office, their success would be far more problematic than 
when they made windows _and_ office. The more areas they cover, the more 
coverage, more customer trust, more purchases in the core areas. It has been 
their winning strategy for decades. They buy a product that has nothing to 
do with their core traditions (a game, for example), only to cover one more 
spot, and the very fact of coverage boosts the sales of their core 
products - even if the just-purchased product does not bring any revenue. 
It's very smart strategy to offer consumer products with little or even no 
revenue, in order to boost the sales of the real money-makers: server 
software for the business, hundreds/thousands of licenses of Office and 
Windows per each company, TechNet and MSDN subscriptions, consulting 
services, etc., etc. Money and the like are small things, reminders of the 
brand, so to speak. MS is not unique here, there are many other companies 
who offer excellent free consumer software that serves as advertising for 
their business products or services. Look at SysInternals, for instance.

And for this very reason, I think, Microsoft is not very smart to play in 
the media business. In the light of the above, these "small things" may not 
bring big revenue, but consumers must love them. MSN hardly satisfies this 
criteria, as it never has been truly successful. So not only MS lost 
billions on it, but I doubt it brought any significant consumer confidence 
benefit to the core areas.

The really smart strategy would be demonstrating on every corner that 
Microsoft is only engaged in software business, and whatever it does in 
software business, really shines. That would be right on target. Pursuing 
software and media revenues at the same time, I think, is very risky, and 
with very stiff competition in the both areas, has little chances to 
succeed.

Of course, all of the above are only my personal views, and can be 
completely wrong.


Vadim 

0
vr (140)
2/23/2005 6:01:24 AM
So, your argument is basically that Money is--or should be--a Loss Leader to 
get us all to love Microsoft and buy the stuff they actually make real money 
selling.

My experience is that sooner or later companies find ways to make sure that 
all of their efforts earn their own keep pretty directly. Now, HP may sell 
printers as loss leaders. But they sure know how to rake it in on the 4,782 
kinds of consumables they all require. Money has no direct compliment like 
the ink cartridge.

I agree that Microsoft did a lot better software when that's what they 
focused on.

I think they saw that sooner or later we'd all have computers and we'd all 
tire of upgrading the software. Computers would last longer and they'd get 
fast enough and useful enough that we'd not feel compelled to upgrade as 
quickly. Fewer new customers, fewer upgrade customers, fewer replacement 
customers. Add to that the problem of designing and developing new/upgrade 
software products--each bigger, more costly, more risky, taking longer to 
develop than the last. Hmmm. So the development side is costing more and 
taking longer and the sales side is going slower and adding fewer new 
customers. Sounds like converging trends.

So they looked around and got AOL-envy: AOL gets money every month just for 
being there. AOL rolls out new features and people beg for the upgrade. AOL 
gives away the upgrade. Users lap it up and want more connections, more 
convert to broadband, more plug into the extra cost/ad revenue generating 
services. And they pay Every Month whether you actually write any software 
or not!

The rest is history in process.

"Vadim Rapp" <vr@myrealbox.nospam.com> wrote in message 
news:OaabU0WGFHA.1528@TK2MSFTNGP09.phx.gbl...
> Um, no, not agreed. Microsoft makes many products, and it's real strength 
> is in the broad coverage of the software market. If they were making only 
> windows, or only office, their success would be far more problematic than 
> when they made windows _and_ office. The more areas they cover, the more 
> coverage, more customer trust, more purchases in the core areas. It has 
> been their winning strategy for decades. They buy a product that has 
> nothing to do with their core traditions (a game, for example), only to 
> cover one more spot, and the very fact of coverage boosts the sales of 
> their core products - even if the just-purchased product does not bring 
> any revenue. It's very smart strategy to offer consumer products with 
> little or even no revenue, in order to boost the sales of the real 
> money-makers: server software for the business, hundreds/thousands of 
> licenses of Office and Windows per each company, TechNet and MSDN 
> subscriptions, consulting services, etc., etc. Money and the like are 
> small things, reminders of the brand, so to speak. MS is not unique here, 
> there are many other companies who offer excellent free consumer software 
> that serves as advertising for their business products or services. Look 
> at SysInternals, for instance.
>
> And for this very reason, I think, Microsoft is not very smart to play in 
> the media business. In the light of the above, these "small things" may 
> not bring big revenue, but consumers must love them. MSN hardly satisfies 
> this criteria, as it never has been truly successful. So not only MS lost 
> billions on it, but I doubt it brought any significant consumer confidence 
> benefit to the core areas.
>
> The really smart strategy would be demonstrating on every corner that 
> Microsoft is only engaged in software business, and whatever it does in 
> software business, really shines. That would be right on target. Pursuing 
> software and media revenues at the same time, I think, is very risky, and 
> with very stiff competition in the both areas, has little chances to 
> succeed.
>
> Of course, all of the above are only my personal views, and can be 
> completely wrong. 


0
2/23/2005 1:45:48 PM
Hello Dick:
You wrote  on Wed, 23 Feb 2005 06:45:48 -0700:

 DW> So, your argument is basically that Money is--or should be--a Loss
 DW> Leader to get us all to love Microsoft and buy the stuff they actually
 DW> make real money selling.

I'd rather say "may" be - if MS indeed sees it that way.

The problem I'm afraid of is that Money, in fact, does not really fit into 
those software categories that border with money-making areas. This product 
is pretty much standalone in MS palette, and I think that's why at some 
point it was "given" to MSN. I wouldn't be surprised to hear that 
discontinuing it was considered by MS at some point.

Would be much more interesting if MS looked at the possibilities of really 
integrating Money with their server offerings, which might interest the 
banks by some new unique features for their customers, possible only in 
tandem between Money and some MS server at the bank - something like more 
complete tracking of payments, or faster delivery, or some instant alerting 
about account activities, etc. Another very interesting avenue of 
integration might be with Outlook - all those reminders and such. Yet 
another might stress the analytical features of Money, i.e. finding the best 
financial solutions not by dumb msn advertising, but by smart search in the 
databases (again, on MS servers) of insurance products, credit products, 
checking products, etc., etc. - all based on the user's data Money already 
has in the file. The possibilities of this program are endless, but people 
with media approach would hardly see them.

Vadim 

0
vrapp (55)
2/23/2005 5:50:11 PM
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Several months ago my copy of Money 2001 started not responding almost every time I entered a transaction. I do have several years worth of transactions in the file. I'm running XP Professional. Not responding, EVER, or not responding soon? "jds92257" <anonymous@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message news:39775DD6-7B51-4A2C-9329-47C37867F3C2@microsoft.com... > Several months ago my copy of Money 2001 started not responding almost every time I entered a transaction. I do have several years worth of transactions in the file. I'm running XP Professional. I bet...

restore money 2003 upgrade??
In July I downloaded the trial version of Money 2003. I then purchased the upgrade offer (Money Deluxe 2003 English Upgrade From Money Trial). Recently I had some sort of problem with my computer that I only knew how to fix by completely reinstalling Windows XP. I went to locate the trial offer of Money 2003 and only found the international version. I downloaded that thinking I could live with favourite instead of favorite and so forth but - I can't figure out how to reinstall my upgrade and make everything work. I can't get help from Microsoft because they want my produc...