Thursday, December 03, 2009

"You call that ERP? In MY day..."

A couple of interesting links to pass along:

Houston Neal at Software Advice has put together a nice graphical overview of the events of the past 40ish years in the ERP world. See also a more detailed wiki history, maintained by xTuple's own Wally Tonra.

Always interesting to look back, especially to realize (if the tombstones here don't make the case clearly enough) how many giants of the business just simply don't exist any more.

Along those lines, a quick note: People often ask if all the graveyard imagery is supposed to mean that the products or companies are really dead, or just sleepy. Like soap opera villains, ERP systems never really die - but they can only come back so many times before it gets silly.

So it's a fair point to say, "such and such a vendor has thousands of installs and is still selling the product." Maybe so - but if that product/company has been bought and sold a bunch of times, and it's one of many disparate offerings under a single corporate umbrella, the emptor should certainly caveat.