A reader sent me a fantastic suggestion last month and I'm rather embarrassed that I didn't think of it myself.
His suggestion is one that I think can do some good for the OS/2 community and one which will require very little effort on any one individual's part. It's not a new idea; in fact, many people and organizations on the 'net and off are already doing similar things. It's not a complicated idea either. In fact, it is so simple that you'll be able to take action on it before you finish reading this page.
This is the letter I received:
I have recently been on a mission to reach, and thank all those companies that provide hardware support through constantly updated drivers for the OS/2 Market. The most surprising thing I have found is the reaction from the teams in these companies.This idea reminded me of Oprah Winfrey's "book club": each month, Oprah encourages her readers to purchase a certain book. With Oprah's influence, many moderate sellers have become huge successes..
Example: I decided to write S3, thanking them for the regular way in which they have released updates to their video drivers for OS/2. (I use a Trio64 Video Card. Quite generic, inexpensive, and thanks to S3, a very good card.)
The reaction? An enthusiastic note from the team leader, thanking me for taking the time to acknowledge the work and time they have put in. The same can be said of various other companies I have contacted via e-mail.
Are we OS/2 users doing enough to assure these companies that we see and appreciate their hard work? Perhaps we only contact these companies to [complain] about the slightest problem.
Well, let us take a few minutes every week, pick a company that has provided updates and new hardware support for OS/2 and thank them. Point out the good things, not just the bad. Maybe we can get things rolling with a little kindness.
Well, I'm certainly not Oprah Winfrey but, after reading the above letter, I realized that I had a similar opportunity. Each month, 10's of thousands of OS/2 users read OS/2 e-Zine! -- including this very page. After Hector suggested his idea, it seemed to me that as long as I didn't ask people to do anything that would cost them money or too much effort, I might be able to arouse a sort of Oprah-esque OS/2 advocacy.
So I decided that each month, I would advocate that readers of OS/2 e-Zine! take a moment to write a short note to a company that has shown dedication to OS/2. Hector was primarily interested in thanking hardware driver developers, and this is certainly a great idea, but I suggest that we don't need to limit ourselves to just driver developers. There are plenty of games, graphics, Internet utilities, and other OS/2 software developers that also deserve our thanks.
Each month, we will select one company or person who has shown dedication to OS/2. Any reader who feels appreciative of that particular developer will be able to write a short note and send it directly from this page -- you won't even have to open your e-mail program.
To start this project off, this month we have chosen Jeppe Cramon as an example of a developer who has made a significant contribution to OS/2. Mr. Cramon is the author of the Cramon Utilities for OS/2 and, more recently, PlusPak: B.U.G.S., which was published by Stardock Systems (and reviewed in this issue!). I felt that any author willing and able to develop a high quality arcade style game for OS/2, in light of IBM's lack of support, definitely deserves our thanks and admiration. If you're not familiar with Cramon's work, take a moment to browse his site with the link above.
So take a few minutes to write a short note to Jeppe Cramon thanking him for his support of OS/2. Just type your comments in the box below (don't forget to enter your name and e-mail address) and press the "Thank that man!" button.
Now, naturally, the point of this exercise is to encourage developers so please, send only positive comments via this form (we will not be monitoring your messages in any way).
And, by the way, don't feel you need to wait for us to suggest a developer to be thanked -- please feel free to fire up your e-mail programs and write letters of support to any and all OS/2 developers you feel deserve it. It can only be a positive thing.
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