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December 18, 2007

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Gideon King

Hi Chuck,

Thanks for mentioning the release of NovaMind Platinum for Windows. This is close to the end of the product launch sequence we started about 9 months ago with the announcement of the three editions, and the subsequent release of Express, Pro and Platinum for Mac and Pro (and now Platinum) for Windows. The only one left to complete the lineup is the Express version for Windows which is just about to enter beta testing.

I am a little surprised by the comment about an expectation of Platinum not being the most advanced edition of a software package. Before naming the editions, we did a search of what other people were calling their different editions of products.

We found that there did not appear to be any common thread - for example, looking at some of the most common software in use globally, we found the following products and editions:

Windows Vista: Basic / Home Premium / Business / Ultimate
Windows XP: Media Center / Home / Professional
Photoshop: Elements / Standard / Extended
Office: Standard / Pro / Enterprise
Oracle: Express / Standard / Enterprise
SQL Server: Compact / Express / Workgroup / Standard / Enterprise
Visual Studio: Express / Professional / Team Suite

As you can see, the naming was all over the place, and only one of the products had Pro as the top of their range, and two had Express as the low end of their range.

Further, we looked at platinum editions, and this is what we found (again, product: editions):

Printmaster: Gold / Platinum
PhotoBuilder: Standard / Platinum
MyPostCards: Pro / Expert / Platinum
ATI Radeon: Pro / Platinum
TurboCad: Deluxe / Pro / Platinum
Photograbber: Premium / Platinum

So in all cases, we found that where there was a Platinum edition, it was top of the range, very often a Pro edition was somewhere in the middle, and where there was an Express edition, it was almost always at the low end.

So we opted to go with the naming Express / Pro / Platinum, which we feel adequately expresses the range of products and intended audiences. We have not had anyone contact us before with any confusion over the product range.

It wasn't an easy decision seeing as there is no "standard" way of doing it.

Having the different editions allows us to much better service the diverse range of needs of our customers right from primary school children through to the advanced uses of businesses. The current editions are the starting point of the split of focus of the different editions, and we will be continuing to focus on both simplification at the Express end of the scale in particular, and the addition of more power features at the Platinum end without sacrificing simplicity.

For a full description of the different editions and their target markets, please see http://www.nova-mind.com/Features

I hope this serves to clarify the choice of names and the reason why it was necessary to produce different products for different markets.

Regards

Gideon King, CEO
NovaMind Software
http://www.nova-mind.com

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