I chatted again recently with Simon Peel of Cast Iron Systems, and this time I got a better understanding of Cast Iron’s simplicity claim. It refers largely to a drag-and-drop interface that furthermore provides default mappings between pairs of application suites. Simon bristled a bit when I referred to this as mapping “like to like,” because he’s proud that it’s a little smarter than that. Still, “like to like” seems to be what it typically amounts to — customers go to customers, customer addresses go to customer addresses, and so on.
Simon claimed that for similar mappings via Pervasive you’d actually have to write code. I wonder if anybody from Pervasive would care to comment on that?
My other interesting takeaway was pricing — most of their customers rent rather than buying. Many sign long-term commitments to get discounts and still choose to rent. The main reason seems to be that’s where they have the flexibility to make room in their budget. An important secondary reason seems to be that many of Cast Iron’s customers are using Cast Iron primarily to connect to SaaS, so they’re oriented to periodic payments anyway.