Re: Important notice: a note or two about future compatibility of add-ons on community add-ons website and elsewhere
I'm not sure just what is planned. Perhaps it will give a choice unless an add-on is so old that it has no possibility of running and may be disruptive. I may have misunderstood the message. I thought that beyond a certain point, the user wouldn't be given a choice.
As far as being cavalier is concerned, I wasn't addressing that question. I was saying the the person I responded to took what I consider to be a cavalier approach to the question by saying that there are thousands of synthesizers and that you can use a different player.
I agree that a lot of people can use older versions of NVDA for a good while, perhaps years, and not suffer a loss in doing the tasks they want to do. I was worried that the user wouldn't be given a choice to try using an old add-on if they needed to use a new version of NVDA. That may not be true except when an add-on is so old that it won't run or will cause problems.
----- Original Message -----
It's a two way street, and software, any software, has never been about pleasing any single end user, but the target demographic. Also, far too many confuse need and desire. If there is a legitimate need then there is a mechanism for reporting same to the developers. One can even use that mechanism to make feature requests.
In the final analysis, it is the software developers who are subject to the outcry from users in all cases. When it comes to a choice between being certain that the software will function as designed when used with add-ons, that takes precedence. Add-ons can actually break core functionality, and when they do it's very seldom the add-on developer who hears about it (and there's been quite a bit of direct evidence for that recently in regard to NVDA Remote Support in the months just passed). Many add-ons are abandoned entirely by their original developers (a good non-NVDA example of that was Webvisum).
It is not cavalier, in any way, to say that user preference is secondary, by far, to keeping a functioning product. It is no different than the assertion, that you yourself have made, that it is not up to employers to supply the screen reader of choice in their businesses, but to supply a screen reader.
Users, blind, sighted, whatever have to adjust as software moves along. 'Twas ever thus.
There should certainly be a period where "questionably compatible" add-ons be allowed to run if the user permits it, and it sounds like that is going to be supplied. But, eventually, it can and must end or the risk to core functionality and the end user's ability to use same is just too great.
When you add in the fact that NVDA updates to the software itself are not forced on the user, they do have the option to remain on an earlier version or to keep a "portable NVDA" archive so that if in a real pinch an ancient and not-currently-maintained add-on could be run. Heaven knows I see people all the time nursing along outdated software.
Brian - Windows 10 Home, 64-Bit, Version 1809, Build 17763
A great deal of intelligence can be invested in ignorance when the need for illusion is deep.
~ Saul Bellow, To Jerusalem and Back