Ontology editor (non) user survey. Results

James Rice <rice@smi.stanford.edu>
Date: Mon, 13 Feb 1995 18:39:37 PST
From: James Rice <rice@smi.stanford.edu>
To: srkb@cs.umbc.edu
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Subject: Ontology editor (non) user survey. Results
Message-id: <CMM.0.88.792729577.rice@hpp.Stanford.EDU>
Many thanks to all those who took the time to answer the user and/or
non-user survey.  The following are the high order bits resulting from
the surveys.  If you'd like to see the full responses and comments
you can see them by clicking on the "What the critics say" button on


Note:  you don't need any magical browser to view this stuff.
In particular, if you had some specific concerns and/or asked
specific questions, this is where you should look for the

I did get one complaint about sending this survey to SRKB, so
this will be the last message on this topic I'll send there.
Any further comment will happen on the Ontolingua mailing list.
If you'd like to get on the Ontolingua list, please send me mail.

There were actually two surveys, one sent to the Ontolingua and SRKB
lists aimed at those who had not tried it and a separate survey that
went to all registered users except for those here at the KSL.

Results from the non-user survey:

 - Most people expressed interest but no time to follow it up.

 - A significant number of people commented on the fact that their
   browsers were not up to the task.  I'd like to mention that:
   a) The button labeled "Trouble logging in" on the login page has
      been enhanced to have URLs that will help you to upgrade
      your current browser.  The browsers that are known to be
      up to it are:  Mosaic>=2.5b2 (under X), Netscape >=0.93
      (on all platforms), MacWeb>=1.0Alpha3 (Mac).  If you find one
      that works, please tell us.  We don't have any PCs here, so we
      haven't tried any of the PC-based browsers.
   b) Even if you are running under X on unix, you may well not have
      to wait for your system administrator to do the upgrade, as some
      thought.  You can in general simply FTP over the newer version
      into your own directory and run it from there.  Us the "Trouble
      logging in" page to get the upgrade.
   c) The message you get when you connect with an inadiquate browser
      has been improved also to give you the URL necessary to help
      you upgrade, and to explain why what you were using isn't up
      to the task.
   d) The requirement for a reasonably up-to-date browser _was not
      gratuitous_.  It really is necessary to get a reasonable user
      interface.  Sorry about that.  We weren't trying to make life
      hard for you.

Results from the user survey:

 - Everyone who had played with it enough to get an idea seemed to think
   that we had delivered the goods as advertised.

 - Everyone who had played with it enough to get an idea thought it was
   worth recommending to friends.

 - Pretty well everyone was pleased with the documentation.

 - Almost everyone thought it was intuitive to use

 - Most people had only played with it briefly (the survey was not sent
   to our local users who have used it a lot).  Most stated that it looked
   like it might be relavant to their work as their motivation for looking.

 - A number of people commented things being slow due to low bandwidth
   connections.  A large number of our new users are either in Europe
   or Japan, and they suffered particularly in this respect.  The following
   is a breakdown of the domains of the currently registered users
   (including the KSL)

	1   be
	5   ca
	1   ch
	13  com
	4   de
	39  edu
	2   fr
	1   gov
	1   ie
	1   it
	3   jp
	1   net
	4   nl
	1   se
	2   uk

  For a beta release we can't ship outside of Stanford.  We haven't decided
  what to do in the future.  This rather depends on user demand, the
  resources we have to support other sites (this is very expensive to us),
  and some specific licensing issues.

Many thanks once more to all who responded.  We got lots of insightful
comments and feature requests.  I think we got a >25% response rate,
which is really good, I think.