Saturday, October 23, 2010

FoxTales: Behind the Scenes at Fox Software

FoxTales: Behind the Scenes at Fox Software, Kerry Nietz, Hentzenwerke Publishing, Memoir, 2003, 265 pages.

Here is the publisher’s synopsis of the book:

Much has been written about the battles that go on between software companies over market share. FoxTales is the story about one such battle, told from the perspective of a foot soldier-my perspective.

When I started working for Fox Software as a young college grad, it was a company of barely over thirty people. It shared space in a small bank building located in the town of Perrysburg-on the edge of Ohio’s farm country. It was a quaint, family-run business and it’s product, FoxBASE+, was a niche player.

The next four years brought many surprises, though. In that time, Fox would release a line of award winning database products, be sued by a larger rival company, grow to over 250 employees, and eventually outlive the rival to merge with Microsoft, moving all of us thousands of miles west.

And to think, I could’ve been a farmer.

My thoughts: Wow!! Kerry Nietz has surprised me again! In his later works (The Dark Trench Saga) he blew my mind with great sci-fi material, and now he has done so with his knowledge of software. Most of the time, I didn’t know what he was describing at all, but what was necessary, the difficulty or necessity of it, came clear. Nietz rendition of Dave Fulton was quite vivid, and he skillfully conveyed the characteristics of each of the mentioned employees. He wrote this book from the perspective of the “college grad,” always showing someone else’s work or product to be superior, and for this I admire him.

My rating: 5 stars

 Upcoming reviews
  • Almost Heaven by Chris Fabry
  • Questions Christians Hope No One Will Ask by Mark Mittelberg (sp?)
Read my interview with Kerry Nietz
Buy FoxTales
Check out Kerry Nietz's website

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