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Thread: Microtek M1 Scanner

  1. #1
    Ted Harris's Avatar
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    Microtek M1 Scanner

    I spoke with the North American product manager yesterday. There have beensome further delays and they now expect the M1 scanner to start shipping in September and to reach the US the begining of October, latest. This may be conservative and they may actually start production sooner and be here sooner but this is the latest.

  2. #2
    Ted Harris's Avatar
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    Re: Microtek M1 Scanner

    Hwere is the latest Press Release from Microtek to the media, dealers, etc:

    An update on the launch of the Microtek ArtixScan M1 dual-media scanner is overdue, and I apologize for my silence. The development of the ArtixScan M1 has taken much longer than expected. Our engineers were overly optimistic in their estimates of the development effort. I apologize for not sharing more information with you earlier, but the schedule changed every week and it would have been pointless to share updates when the accuracy of the updates was in question. It is still difficult for me to determine when production will begin on the ArtixScan M1, and I cannot simply rely on the estimates that I have received from our engineering team. Although much progress has been made and the engineers are close to completing the development work, I cannot clearly predict the launch schedule until the development work has been completed. At this time we expect to begin production in August and receive units at our warehouse in Los Angeles in September. For planning purposes, please wait until you hear from me that production has begun. I will send out a notice when we are confident that units are ready to leave the factory in China and we know when the units will arrive at our warehouse in Los Angeles. I appreciate the support that we have received in this long, drawn out launch of the ArtixScan M1, and I look forward to working with you when production units are available to review.

  3. #3
    Scott Rosenberg's Avatar
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    Re: Microtek M1 Scanner

    seems like a company that has developed as many product as microtek has would have project managers able to accurrately generate a gant chart.

    i hope this is an indication of some new breakthrough technology or feature not yet seen on the microtek product line.

    scott

  4. #4
    Resident Heretic Bruce Watson's Avatar
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    Re: Microtek M1 Scanner

    Quote Originally Posted by Ted Harris View Post
    Our engineers were overly optimistic in their estimates of the development effort.
    Yeah sure, blame the engineers. In my experience as an engineer, the full story goes more like this:

    1) Engineers come up with new idea for a better product.
    2) Take idea to management.
    3) Management says to scope it out, estimate time and materials, do a project plan, all that.
    4) Project plan completed. Management says cut time in half. Keep all features. Cut budget in half. And by the way, keep up with your other projects. Engineers (who know better now than to say it can't be done) say they'll do their best, but won't commit to the new dates.
    5) Engineers complete working prototype.
    6) Marketing, who wouldn't participate up to this point because it wasn't their idea, now demands lots of changes. Feature creep begins in earnest.
    7) Engineers push back, try to nail down features. All agree. Marketing publishes their specs anyway, and as a bonus publishes new date even tighter than the one before, that itself was unmakeable.
    8) Engineers stomp into management offices as a group to complain. Management says "what can I do, it's already been published?" Now everyone pissed off.
    9) Management meets with engineers one by one to tell them that they have a "bad attitude" and that they aren't "team players." Morale improves greatly of course. Passion for project fades. Resumes float. Leaders transfer to new projects if the can. Schedule slip is guaranteed.
    10) When it becomes obvious even to management that the dates aren't even remotely possible, they want to cut features. Engineers explain that this is adding work to the project and is in fact pushing the date out farther. Management doesn't understand. Marketeers livid.
    11) When the published date comes and goes, customers want to know what the problem is.

    12) Marketing is genetically wired to deflect blame. Since it can't be their fault... BLAME THE ENGINEERS.

    The best part is, the people who really get screwed are the QA people. They don't get their hands on a working production unit until well after the ship date. Every day they have the product is a delay in the ship date. Talk about pressure! And an abbreviated QA cycle = buggy product. So ultimately it's you and me who get screwed.

    At this stage if I were seriously interested in the M1, I'd be looking to wait at least a year after it actually ships before buying one. I'm not big on being unpaid QA for anyone anymore.

    And no, I'M NOT BITTER! I'm not. Really. And the truth is the truth, bitter or not. I'm just saying...

    Bruce Watson

  5. #5
    Ted Harris's Avatar
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    Re: Microtek M1 Scanner

    Bruce, far be it from me to disagree with you (hint, the very first thing the new product manager did after assuming the job in October 2006 was make the initial 'early announcement') ... having said that I think that after nearly a year of premature annnouncements they may finally be ready.

  6. #6

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    Re: Microtek M1 Scanner

    Bruce, did you work for my company?

    In my experience in IT, that's about dead on. It is of course worse in gov't contracting than in product development, because the gov't rewards companies that operate that way, and penalizes the ones that get their work done within budget and on time...

  7. #7

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    Re: Microtek M1 Scanner

    I always thought that Dilbert was exaggerated, now I see that it's under exaggerated if anything! I love being my own boss, who cares if the hours are long and the car cheap...

  8. #8

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    Re: Microtek M1 Scanner

    Dilbert's a sugar-coated version tinged with an optimistically satirical bent. If you want something closer to reality, read http://www.thedailywtf.com.

    Not that you should stop reading Dilbert if you find it entertaining, of course. In spite of the caricatures, it's non-fictional in nature. I suspect that the fat bald executive here shaved his head to hide the pointyness of his hair...

  9. #9

    Re: Microtek M1 Scanner

    Quote Originally Posted by Van Camper View Post
    .... All I hear is someone not being a team player, and likes to thrash marketers. Sorry, as a marketer, you got your views, I got mine. It sure sounds like your bitter.
    Is there a single technical person who has not been screwed over at least once by sales/marketing?

    How do you know when a salesman/marketing man is lying? His lips move.

    Steve

  10. #10

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    Re: Microtek M1 Scanner

    Quote Originally Posted by Van Camper View Post
    There is no room for arrogant attitudes from any team. If you can't work as a team, have respect, then you don't belong.
    By that criterion, most marketing departments should be summarily fired.

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