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How many copies of your software sell for a month, how much it costs, and can you do enough for living ?

My Question Is:
How many copies of your software sell for a month, how much it costs, and can you do enough for living ?
Hello, i'm a newbie in programming in Delhpi 7, and i wonder will it worth of learning and will i be able to do enough for living (one day)
Thanks for the payed attention
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Karl Heinz KremerCommented:
Writing (and selling) your own software is not the only way to earn a living with software. Another (and probably more common) way is to get a job in programming.
Chances are that Delphi will not help you much with that.

If you want to do it all yourself:: It all depends. It depends on the market you are in, how good your software is, and what your competition is.

However, if you are just starting out, don't anticipate any software related income for a long time. Assuming you have a great idea, and the skills to implement it, you can make quite a good living. But, keep in mind that it's not just about your programming skills: If you do this alone, you need to do UI design (which is not trivial!), documentation, marketing, distribution, and anything else that's necessary to get the customer to actually use your software.
I am not familair with Delphi but of all things... focus is the key.

The computer field is a strange thing. Software is even more unique for the reason of:
1. It's intangible and has not form like a can of soda. It is a product with quasi existence. until it goes into a System.
2. As a result, it has almost Zero transportation cost when it is distributed over the net.
3. It is also easier to be copied illegally and ditrbuted widely.

I work predominantly with Microsoft languages such as VB6 - VB.net and ASP.Net. Delphi and VB are both regarded as 4th Generation Languages and under the category of Rapid Application Development type. Great for speedy development.

Yet, for really meaningful stuff, i still prefer to work with C++ with occasional C. Once you know C++, Java is not too far away. With Delphi it is likely you will work with the Paradox database. I have seen some nice application written with Delphi.

Here is my answer for your Question of writing programs from home.

Designing a successful commercial software requires more than computer programming skills. I mean: One has to be an expert at more than One thing.

Yes, every programmer has the potential to earn enough for themselves writing software from home. However many don't have broad enough skills and experience to really commercialize software successfully to do that.

These are the things i believe are required:
1 - Financial Management: Operate at minimum cost and expense structure. Do things cheap.

2 - Expert at Programming: Core Competency in a reliable language.

3 - Expert with Database: Need to be able to work with a few Db and their DBMS.

4 - Expert at Software Engineering: Need to know how to develop a Quality product under the shortest period.

5 - Expert at UI Engineering: All software have faces. End-user can't tell you have used XYZ Advance Engine with Nitro. Hence you got to not only build an efficient engine, but also create a UI that is easy to learn and use while looking pretty... Nice Icons and stuff. No real programmer i have known love designing ICONS.

5 - Expert in Marketing: Know how to distribute (download, shareware, licensing, search engines, websites, forums & etc). Brand the Product and each Advance Features to create a Public Image of Reliability and Performance. User don't care if you use Delphi or VB.Net.. or even C++ to code as long as it performs. Marketing also means knowing your target market and who uses them. Market Intelligence: Use the competitor's product as a base for getting an idea how well you software will sell.

Too many programmers don't understand the end-user and they endup programming for themselves. Hence the software don't sell that well.

To be dead honest, the End-user don't care whether you use Delphi only an Employer will. The end-user also don't care about whether you are great at Delphi because they just want their newly downloaded program to work and don't crash.

How many software to sell to feed yourself every month?

I don't know. it depends on the pricing of yout software and what you sell. No one will succeed if there is a competing product that is free. See where Netscape is not after Internet Explorer was a freebie.
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