921 Beta Testers

ScottChez

ScottChez

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Just remember when the 921 does come out this week, all of you who get one will be BETA testers.

If you do not want to be a BETA tester then wait and order it in January.


I for one do not mind being a Beta tester. I love testing new Software on the PC and great new bleeding edge AV Equipment like. Its almost a hobby. I know there will be many bugs as there has been in the past.


I just wanted to warn every one that has not gone through this before. Past trends have shown that all new Dish Hardward does have a fed bugs the first Month or so. Examples: the 501 and the 811 and the . . . .

This is normal due to Echostars fast release cycle and there small staffing levels of Programmings and testers.

This is also the first release in the whole world of a HDTV DVR for DBS. (they beat the HDTV Direct TIVO to market).


I would suggest waiting till Jan unless you love to Beta test things. If you do get one, remember to post your findings here first so the non beta testers can learn and decide on when is the best time to buy.


I love this Forum. You guys are great.

Cant wait for the tests to begin.
 
B

bytre

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Beta test is pre-release. Sure, its fun to bash a company when they release with bugs, but by the very definition of the product going to retail release, the product is no longer beta.
 
rad

rad

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Being a beta tester can be a good thing, I've done it for IBM, Cisco and Intel. But with an 'official' beta program you have a special bug reporting structure so you can get your input to the folks that need it and don't have to go through normal CSR channels that just waste your time.

Maybe Dish should set up a special hot line for the first month or so for the 921 users that get to reps that know the box and can ask intelligent questions and give knowledgable answers vs the person reading from a script that won't fix anything.
 
B

bradleys

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I LOVE to beta test software (and hardware, too).

I'm working on a software beta for some marine navigation software right now. I just finished the Red Hat Enterprise Linux 3 beta test.

Since my "work computers" are at a hospital, I NEVER beta test anything there.

It's great to be able to test stuff without worrying about somebody dying.
 
TheForce

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If I were a beta tester for E*:

1. I would have an NDA with them on the 921 and
2. I would be employed by them with an employment agreement for non disclosure.

Both of these reasons would prevent me from posting my beta test results on this or any other forum.

You people who don't have a clue about real beta or alpha testing should just stop trying to flatter yourselves and be content to buy product as a consumer, whether or not it is 100% perfect by your definition.
 
J

John W

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Don Landis said:
If I were a beta tester for E*:

1. I would have an NDA with them on the 921 and
2. I would be employed by them with an employment agreement for non disclosure.

Both of these reasons would prevent me from posting my beta test results on this or any other forum.

You people who don't have a clue about real beta or alpha testing should just stop trying to flatter yourselves and be content to buy product as a consumer, whether or not it is 100% perfect by your definition.

Its a friggin' Joke - take it easy.
 
ScottChez

ScottChez

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take it easy.

It was a joke.

I know what Beta testing is. I get paid to do it all the time.


My point is that because Dish is in such a hurry due to competition they oftem miss things and in a way we are the beta tests.

I have heard that the Programer, Dev, and tester head count level at Dish has not increased to match the porportion of Customers and receivers that they support.

In other words that are understaffed.

Kind of ties into the SBC merger rumors (they need the company to look lean).
 
TheForce

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Scott- A Joke? Here's a tip- Don't quit your day job. :) Maybe stand up comedy is not your thing.

The rumors you heard about beta testing the 921 seem to be true. They discovered that few employees were equipped to beta the HDTV functions in the 921 such as little talked about areas like DVI, RGBHV component outputs. Few people are set up to test these combinations in one location.
 
ScottChez

ScottChez

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Looking at what they have setup in the DBStalk Board it is coming try. The board has a place for all us "beta" testers.
 
TheForce

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Yeah, seems Mark was signed on as a non-employee for last minute beta tester just prior to release. Is this still called beta? or is it like the magazine reviewers always seem to get a sneak preview for press release just prior to first shipments. Considering the software he was reviewing is a prerelease version it is in all liklihood a beta product yet. I know the beta programs I have had NDA's on never allowed public discussion and even some forbid you to admit that you were even on the beta team much less do a public review on the internet. No, I think Mark was selected based on his ability to do a fair and balanced( is that now copyrighted?) review for all of us to see. He did one bang up job, IMO. Very professional and covered just about all the bases. The only questions I had left he explained he couldn't answer at this time.
 
M

markdl

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Don,

Thanks for the kind words. As Scott can attest to, Echostar's NDAs are a little different than most. Until the 921 is publicly released, it still considered beta. I was brought in last week to beta the 921 based on my history testing the 6000 for Dish in the past.

I had to be very careful writing the review to not say anything that is covered by the NDA, but I also wanted to give you all a realistic look at what the 921 is, and what it isn't. I did NOT want you to go away from reading my review thinking the 921 was perfect, because it's not. But I did want you to be excited about this box, because it is really, really nifty. And, the majority of the features that people want it for work pretty damn well. That's what I wanted you to take away from it. I believe that's what Dish also wanted you to take away from it.

Unlike other reviews that I've done, with this one I didn't have free reign to say whatever I wanted to because of the NDA. Also because of the NDA, it was reviewed by Dish prior to going public to ensure that it complied with the terms of the NDA. Dish asked me to make one minor change to the review before I posted it because of something that I said about a feature that is going to change in a future software release. That's it...I changed that piece of text so that it is more correct, and posted it this morning.
 
V

video62

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Sep 26, 2003
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ScottChez said:
I have heard that the Programer, Dev, and tester head count level at Dish has not increased to match the porportion of Customers and receivers that they support.
If they are using their development people to support products then maybe that's why they are having so many problems. IMHO, these should be separate and distinct organizations, each being staffed separately and staff levels adjusted as needed.
 
BobMurdoch

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markdl said:
r. Dish asked me to make one minor change to the review before I posted it because of something that I said about a feature that is going to change in a future software release. That's it...I changed that piece of text so that it is more correct, and posted it this morning.

What was the change? I'm just curious as to what new feature is scheduled to be added (or is it like the Internet feature on the 721..... designated a future capability but placed 10th in line when only the first 5 will realistically be added if they get around to it?)

Sorry, that sounded more sarcastic than I meant it to be, but I'm trying to grasp what are their plans for potential added features at a later date.
 
TheForce

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Thanks for clarifying your status with Dish on the 921, Mark. I think it is very important that you do that because it let's many people know that not just anyone can be in the Dish Beta program just for asking. I could see that Dish could get deluged with requests.
Real beta testing is not a free walk in the park. Even your last few days of it was not just having fun but you produced a very nice, approved, review of the major features.
 
M

markdl

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Don Landis said:
...
Real beta testing is not a free walk in the park. Even your last few days of it was not just having fun but you produced a very nice, approved, review of the major features.

Definitely not a free ride on this one - the last 5 days I've worked harder at this than just about anything all year. Going on about 3 hours of sleep a night...but it is fun as well.
 

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