I was worried....
Good work getting it back up... I wasn't sure if it was at our end, your end, or somewhere in-between. Next time something happens, how about posting a notice over at at OSDN main page? Otherwise, people sit around like worried parents waiting for the overdue teenager to come home :-)
If not Netpliance, then someone else...
Netpliance *could* turn this whole affair into a huge win, and gain a massive advantage in a brand new product area.
But, I don't think they will.
They sort of wandered to the brink of greatness, but it's outside of their original business plan. Now, a company in this situation can do one of two things: adapt, push forward, stick their necks out, and create a whole new business. Or, they can shrink back into their original plan and try and shut out the outside world.
The latter is what Netpliance seems to be trying to do, a few token bones to the developer community notwithstanding. They're hoping those darn geeks go away, so they can go back to selling to their niche market. After all, if engineers like it, it must be too complex for Grandma, right? That's why they'll never sell an expandable system, even at a profit.
There is a market for the closed, simple net appliance. There's a much *bigger* market for a truly flexible, physically small, inexpensive machine that can be everything from a stand-alone to a networked thin-client.
I think Netpliance is going to wind up as the Visicalc of the appliance-system sector in a few years. They were there first, but failed to follow through, and lost to someone with a bigger vision.