Monday, April 04, 2005

Beta Testing

If you want to make a difference and have software companies listen to your feedback and ideas, then you should consider beta testing. You get to see and use software, such as AutoCAD, while it's being developed. Granted this is not for everyone. If you're in a high production office with strict deadlines and no room for error, then I wouldn't even consider it. If you have a stable AutoCAD product and have time to use the beta and answer a few questions, then you should give it a try. While it's impossible to find every problem prior to release, Autodesk does try to do so through beta testing. You can sign up for any Autodesk beta testing at http://myfeedback.autodesk.com/.

If you still want to make a difference, but can't commit to beta testing; then you can try usability testing. You can sign up for this at http://usa.autodesk.com/adsk/servlet/item?id=1073557&siteID=123112. This helps you to give feedback on how you use your own product.

Besides Autodesk, other software companies offer beta opportunities as well. I have more recently done beta testing for McAfee. This allowed me to have the most up-to-date virus protection available for free. I have signed up for beta testing with Adobe and others as well.

Don't underestimate your power to be a part of new products or your opportunity to use the latest software available.

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