I'm sure staffing, costs and a myriad of similar issues are in play, but if RM charged a little more for their product while providing better service, support, and compatibility within an acceptable time frame, then it would definitely be worth it. One usually gets what they pay for, IMHO.
I was gifted Rootsmagic just over a year ago, liked some of the features, tried to get involved in the development program with wishes and am now completely frustrated. What I didn’t realise is that many good knowledgeable long term users had been beating their heads off the wall for much longer than I had been a user and failed. Whilst a native Mac version is a secondary consideration for me I very much doubt I will continue with Rootsmagic. That is fact unless version 8 is a true leap ahead and not some window dressing to paste over many long terms gaps and cracks which have been present for many years in many versions.
Whilst I find the current program dysfunctional in many ways in terms of reporting and navigating easily between relational data sets I also find the user group on Facebook dysfunctional. I say that as my personal experience is that a small number of semi-skilled apologists appear to be favoured by Rootsmagic in their willingness to prop up the product and describe work arounds which should not be necessary and where there is favouritism there is by definition discrimination. Rootsmagic boast of over 20,000 members on their Rootsmagic Users Group but since the majority of those members appear to join looking for help in doing something which is either not possible or not intuitive I don’t believe it’s a boast worth making.
Being relatively new to Rootsmagic I did a lot of reading to learn about the community I was now part of and Rootsmagic appear to have had a very good reputation more than 10 years ago for moving with their customer needs and delivering in a timely fashion. I don’t believe that reputation is valid today or has been for quite some years so firmly a thing of the past. Whilst favouring some users on the Facebook Users Group who are very happy to describe how to fit a square peg into a round hole I do wonder about the methodology and standards accepted within the company. This post may well get deleted as the company now seem to be actively partaking in censorship by deleting truthful user observations on Facebook. If that becomes the case I already have screen captures and will simply move on to air my views on non Rootsmagic moderated sites.
All products are limited by the expertise of the development team and their ability to deliver, Rootsmagic is no different. However I have also read that all the programming will be done “in house” and I believe that then falls to the expertise and abilities of only two programmers, I could be wrong. However, that being so I would just like to say I no longer compete in the 100 meters freestyle, it’s not that I no longer enjoy swimming it’s just that I always come last with the younger fitter swimmers reminding me my days of being competitive have past.
I believe the future of my genealogy research will be with Family Historian, there is no Ancestry sharing and it’s not currently native Mac but I tried it and then bought it based on the experience of another Rootsmagic user. I find it streets ahead of Rootsmagic in terms of productivity, charting, filtering and mapping, also the current version was released around the same time as Rootsmagic 7. It also supports the running ‘in program’ of user defined scripts like those provided offline for Rootsmagic making it very flexible.
For the record, I would love to see Rootsmagic jump well ahead of the competition as there are still many features I do like, however I must be honest that based on history and where the product is now I am far from confident. For now I use both Family Historian and Rootsmagic side by side making the most of both, I will wait for the release of RM8 and I do hope the company succeeds in their goals.
Family historian provide a full unlocked 30 day trial so do not try and hide between the “powerful features unlocked in the full version” promise which then turn out to be dead ducks. I believe if Rootsmagic have full confidence in the next version they should be more than happy to provide a full version time limited trial reverting to the Essential version after the trial expires. That would allow users to fully assess the complete program without wasting their money and if they find the premium features a waste of time simply revert to the free version.
That’s what I call product confidence.