Tuesday, June 7, 2011

Support for Scribe Insight v6.5.x to be discontinued

Scribe has just announced the end of life for it's Scribe Insight 6.5 product line. Is this something to be worried about if you are still on the 6.5 version? In short, not really. Very often when products get to their "end of life" stage, they tend to be pretty stable platforms. I think Scribe Insight 6.5 falls into this category and therefore I do not consider it "do or die" in terms of upgrading. You probably  haven't had to log a ticket to their support group for quite some time now and chances are you are unlikely to need to do so going forward.

Does this mean I'm recommending against an upgrade to the Scribe 7.x product line? Absolutely not. First of all I'm just trying to prioritize the upgrade requirement amongst the many competing priorities that a company might have. I would therefore not place performing a Scribe upgrade as being a crucial upgrade unless there were some compelling reasons to do so. A compelling reason would obviously be if you have been dealing with a number of support issues. Another compelling reason would be if your company's tolerance levels (whether it be mandated or otherwise) for using an officially "unsupported" product are low. Finally, a compelling reason might be because you want to take advantage of the new features that the new product line has to offer.

Indeed, the last reason mentioned is really a reason for upgrading in and of itself rather than having to deal with end of life support issues. Although perhaps the latter is enough to push you over the edge so to speak...

Officially I do most definitely recommend an upgrade to the latest version of Scribe Insight. This version has been out for quite some time now and therefore you are no longer on the bleeding/cutting edge by doing so. You might even be considered to be a laggard at this stage in the game. That notwithstanding, my reason for this recommendation is most definitely because of the 3rd compelling reason I gave for going for an upgrade namely, to take advantage of the new features that the product line has to offer.

Let me explain. Every new product lines offer capabilities that the previous one did not. The lack of these features may very well impact the way you go about making a design decision. For example, before CRM 4.0 you did not have the benefit of many-to-many relationships and the design approach taken in CRM 3.0 for how you go about representing certain relationships may well have been different than how you would have done so using CRM 4.0. Of course the same applies to CRM 2011. A more relevant example - at some point in time Scribe introduced the Query Publisher into their product offering. Having this feature allowed for more options in terms of integration approaches - something that you would not have been able to even consider in previous versions. The result might be that you end up redesigning some of the pre-existing integrations at some point in the future to take advantage of the new capabilities.

Scribe Insight 7.x introduced a number of new capabilities over it's predecessor. In my opinion, the "game changer" of this release (as it relates to design approach as illustrated above) is the "multi-target" capability. Without going into a whole lot of detail, this feature offers a very oft-requested capability that can simplify and even eliminate some integration threads. Having this capability available may very well change how you go about making your integration design decisions for new DTS's and it is primarily for this reason that I make my upgrade recommendation.

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