Visions.eZine Web site
Whether you use Visio Standard, Technical, Professional, or Enterprise, this e-newsletter is for you. WIth a new issue coming out every two weeks, you'll stay up-to-date with the latest news about Visio Corp., as well as anything else related to Visio software. Sometimes, for a change of pace, I'll through in stuff that has nothing to do with Visio.
What about IntelliCAD? It is no longer sold by Visio Corp, although Visio is a member of the IntelliCAD Technical onsortium. I don't intend to cover IntelliCAD, but I can be convinced otherwise. Let me know what you think.
Got a press release
to announce? Got a tip to share? Got an idea for this newsletter?
- Ralph Grabowski, editor
The bill could reach US$2.9 billion if Microsoft decides to walk away from its buyout of Visio. Visio had announced last month that Microsoft would acquire Visio for US$1.3 billion in stock. Each Visio share would be exchanged for 0.45 Microsoft shares.
The cost of the pre-marriage breakup would consist of two parts: (1) a US$30 million breakup fee paid by Visio to Microsoft; and (2) a Microsoft option to purchase up to 6,012,500 shares of Visio common stock at $42.78 a share, worth $2.57 billion. Visio shares yesterday traded at about $35.
Reuters reported that Microsoft can terminate the agreement with Visio, and receive the fee "if Visio's board withdraws or modifies its approval or recommendation of the merger in a way that is adverse to Microsoft." Other conditions for termination include:
Visio is holding a shareholders' meeting to approve the proposed merger agreement on Dec. 13 at 10 a.m. at Visio headquarters in Seattle WA USA.
Visio Corp. announced Nov 16 that the English language version of Visio 2000 Professional Edition (US$399) is now available, and can be viewed this week at Comdex in the Microsoft Partner Pavilion #L5142. New features include:
Visio plans to ship the following software before the end of
the year: Visio 2000 Enterprise Edition and Real-Time Statistics
Add-on (for Enterprise Edition). Visio 2000 Standard Edition was
launched in August, while Visio 2000 Technical Edition was launched
Visio now has an installed base of 3.5 million users worldwide since the release of Visio 1.0 in November 1992. Visio products are available in as many as 12 language versions and are sold in more than 45 countries. In the last year, Visio's corporate sales team expanded by 51%, volume-licensing sales grew by 90%.
Visio, Beyond.com, and
have a new agreement with the American Internal Revenue Service
to license 87,000 IRS employees to use Visio 2000 Standard, Professional,
and Technical editions. The deal is Visio's largest revenue sale
to a federal agency to date.\
The deal enables the IRS to order Visio product editions from the Internet, then receive them via electronic download delivery. The role of Beyond.com and ITC is to digitally deliver software for Windows NT systems throughout the IRS.
Plumtree Software announced Nov 15 that the Technical Services department at Visio has deployed the Plumtree Corporate Portal to enable support engineers in Singapore, Dublin, and Seattle to collaborate on technical support documents and respond more rapidly to customer support requests.
On 1 Dec, ITC member Bricsnet.com plans to provide a single destination to design a building, manage a project team, access information on commercial building components, procure building supplies from manufacturers, and exchange ideas with others.
CNET Business Solutions is an online directory that connects buyers and sellers of business computing products and services. You can position your company in business tech buyers who visit CNET daily. Add your company profile to the directory at http://2.digital.cnet.com/cgi-bin2/flo?x=dgYmmAogmwgggmum
A panel discussing the post-PC era agreed that the future of personal computing and Internet access lies in single- or limited-use machines designed specifically for Web surfing and email, and that eliminate the current PC problems of long start-up time and frequent system crashes. The panelists (reps from Sun, Palm, Microsoft, and Psion) could not, however, agree on how these devices will communicate with each other, or how they will look and feel. - http://news.cnet.com/news/0-1006-200-1451527.html
AutoManager View v3.1 is a stand-alone file viewer that can display Visio, IntelliCAD, Microsoft Office 2000, AutoCAD 2000, scanned images, and hundreds of other file formats. By using AM View, departments such as accounting, QC, marketing & sales, and administration can be brought into the information loop. AM View integrates with Cyco's AutoManager WorkFlow, which provides a highly-customizable document management solution. There are now 200,000 users of Cyco software. A free 30-day trial version of AM View v3.1 is available at http://www.cyco.com
ActiveProject v2000/E (US$85,495) is the enterprise-scalable version of project communication software that makes it easier for organizations to manage multiple, large-scale projects with external partners. Highlights include optional back-end support for Oracle and SQL Server Databases, publishing of SolidWorks CAD Assemblies as navigable Web pages, and the ability to access multiple projects from a single Web page. ActiveProject v2000/E is expected to ship late fourth quarter 1999.
The highest resolution flat-panel display from IBM is capable of 2048x1536-resolution and measures nearly 21 inches (53cm) diagonally.
With digital devices, such as smart cell phones and handheld computers, become more common, Microsoft vp Rick Belluzzo recently outlined Microsoft's next ambitious strategy: "Microsoft will increasingly focus on rich content and software delivered to any device. Software will become a service that customers rent rather than buy."
Visio Corp has its list of "top ten" Visio 2000 features at its Web site. After working with Visio 2000 since August, I have my own list of the best and the worst. And I'd like to see your list:
What do you think are the best and worst features of Visio 2000? Email your Best and Worst of Visio 2000 list . All submissions will be entered in a draw to win one of two copies of PaintShop Pro 6.0. Get your entries in by Friday December 17. Winners announced 5 January 2000 (assuming any of our computers are working).
Q: I am looking to purchase a flowchart and business
process software package for the group I work in. I have narrowed
my search down to Visio 5.0 and Flowcharter 7.0. Surfing the net,
I was able to come up with a very limited article in PC Magazine
comparing the two, but it is dated back in March of 1997. I am
wondering if Visio had the capability to do the following:
Can you link a flowchart to, let's say, an Access database or Excel spreadsheet, and have the flowchart automatically change as you make a data entry? Flowcharter (Igrafx Professional) seems to only be able to do this if you have Visual Basic Programming.
- Leslie Dorward
A: Yes, Visio provides a database wizard that helps you set up the links between the drawing and any ODBC database, including Access and Excel. No programming is required. In Visio 5, from the menu select Tools | Macros | Database | Database Wizard.
Q: Is this in Visio Professional only? I was under the
impression that the "Create DB Wizard" and "Network
DB" were available in Pro, and that the "DB Connectivity
Wizard" is included in Standard. Would you suggest Pro or
Std for this function in general?
A: The DB Connectivity wizard helps you connect rows in a database file with shapes in a Visio drawing. Once the connection is made, changes in Visio or the database are reflected in the other. I would start with Standard (since it is cheaper), then, if necessary, upgrade to Pro, or even Visio Enterprise.
Puzzled about Visio? Got an idea on how to make Visio work better? Send your questions and tips to us. Receive a free Visio book (US$30 value) when your tip is printed here.
Visio announced Oct 27 that revenues for 4Q99 were US$50.1 million, a 13% increase over 4Q98. Net income was US$9.5 million, down from US$9.8 million in 4Q98. Revenues for fiscal year 1999 (FY99) were US$200.0 million, a 20% increase over FY98. Net income was US$39.8 million, up from US$35.0 million in FY98.
Visio believes results in the quarter were impacted primarily by the deferral of product purchases (in both the volume licensing and packaged product channels) in anticipation of the pending acquisition of Visio by Microsoft. Results were also impacted by customers deferring purchases ahead of the upgrade of Visio 2000 Professional and Enterprise Editions, slated for release in the December quarter.
Visio Corp. announced Nov 5 that its board of directors canceled the company's share repurchase program in light of the pending merger with Microsoft. Announced in Feb'99, the repurchase program allowed a total of up to 2 million shares to be repurchased over a two-year period. The Company has repurchased 696,500 shares since the program began. No shares were repurchased in the quarter ended Sept 30'99.
As the end of Tuesday, Visio share price (and 52-week range) was:
Symbol Closing Price
VSIO 35 1/4 21 7/8 - 43 1/2
Save up to 30% by purchasing this book on-line:
2000: The Official Guide
by John Hedtke and Elisabeth Knottingham
512pp, softcover, Osborne/McGraw-Hill , US$34.99).
AACE (association for the advancement of cost engineering) International's 44th Annual Meeting, June 25-28'00, Calgary AB Canada.
SmartPages, the paper-based magazine for Visio users by Visio Corp, is now quarterly; it used to come out twice a year. New editor Steven Bieler is beefing up the editorial. The magazine is sent free to all registered users of Visio products.
RE: Launch of Visions.eZine
"Congratulations on your new endeavor!"
- Watson H. Kilbourne
"Looks like a nice expansion of your business, although
I'm beginning to wonder if you ever sleep!!!"
- Jim Panagas
RE: Microsoft's Purchase of Visio
"What effect do you think the pending antitrust case will have on Microsoft's acquisition of Visio?"
- Scott Andrews
The editor replies: The US government is now investigating
the sale of Visio to Microsoft. This has caused Visio president
Jeremy Jaech to declare that the sale might not now be completed
until next year, perhaps January.
Visio has been making it clear that it wants its software to be the 'standard drawing tool' of the world. That makes me wonder, will the US government allow Microsoft to buy Visio, then compete with smaller vendors like Micrografix, Autodesk (Actrix), and SmartDraw?
Later this week, the DOJ sits down with Microsoft to discuss settlement terms. Most analysts expect the DOJ propose that Microsoft be broken up, as was AT&T. The breakup would result in mini-Microsofts, such as: operating systems, applications, and Internet-related. My guess is that the new Microsoft Applications Corp. would be allowed to complete the purchase of Visio.
"I liked the InfoWorld
article on the Microsoft anti-trust case. Your readers will
be interested in this link to the judge's anti-trust report "Findings
of Fact on Microsoft' at http://usvms.gpo.gov/
- Don Beaton