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I'll take a stab at this! Keep in mind that I joined Alteryx after the decision to build AAH had been made -- so I might be missing some context.
At the highest level, both [Server & Connect] and Alteryx Analytics Hub let you:
Manage & share your stuff (Workflows, Apps, Data Connections)
Schedule & execute your stuff (Workflows, Apps)
Find & discover "new stuff" (Workflows, Databases, Database Tables & Views, Sprocs, Tableau vizzes, etc.), and understand the relationship between all these things
For me, the issue is how well we perform these tasks for you. At GA, Hub already has some advantages over [Server & Connect], and as it matures, Hub will be better at all of these day-to-day activities (...and way, way easier to use.)
Simplification and Convergence: Server and Connect are two distinct products, built on two different tech stacks (one of which is Windows-centric), using two different repositories, with different ways to manage users, security, etc. etc. Taking the best parts of both products and "birthing" a third which use a single set of services and leverage a modern tech stack just makes sense. There's one way to do everything now, one server to backup (not two), etc. We'll eventually be able to run on Linux based on the Node / React / PostgreSQL stack we built Hub on, too.
It's really easy: Users get good at "driving their Server" via lots of time in the product. They learn how Server works and adjust their behavior accordingly, learning by rote how to get things done. On the other hand, Hub was created with ease-of-use in mind. Ask a user who has never seen either Server or Hub to do basic things from the list above, and they get done way faster in Hub. We've tested this and seen it in action.
Innovation: That new technology under Hub will let us do lots of new things faster than we could have if were stuck with the "old" tech.
From my perspective as part of a team that is very new to Server (less than 2 months with it), still trying to get Server up and running ... and now hearing from you that this new product just released is:
easier to use
will enable more innovation, and faster
I'm kind of at a loss for words as to why it was never mentioned that a product that hits all these boxes and (based on your comments) seems to be an all-around better long-term solution was not even mentioned to our team during the Server onboarding process.
@justindavis: No excuses, but what you're asking about is a tricky thing to pull off correctly. It's sort of a damned-if-you-do, damned-if-you-don't situation, really.
The folks in Product (like me) have to have a very firm understanding of what will and won't be delivered in the product many months ahead of time (and this often/mostly isn't the case - features land or get cut right until the very end). Next, we'd need to help create enablement material for "the field" to use to talk to folks like you. The field also needs enough hands-on time with the product (that isn't even complete yet) to be able to deal with the questions they know their customers will be asking. If either of these things go off the rails a bit, FUD ensues.
Typically, attempts at talking about a big product like this in advance (beyond a high-level demo or two at "the big trade show") don't turn out well unless Product is involved, and we're too busy trying to get the thing in the public's hands to tag along on these conversations.
So, the combination of all these realities generally means the sort of discussion you're looking for isn't going to start happening until AFTER the product is on the market. (And that's not an AYX thing, it's pretty much been my experience anywhere I've worked)
Hopefully, that gives you some insight into the "why" (as I see it), even if you still don't like what happened 🙂
These conversations are the lifeblood of User Experience Research and why we are so appreciative of how thoughtful our users are with sharing as much as they do. The User Experience Research team would love to include this and any additional feedback as we continue to refine the tools YOU need US to improve.
Navigation is such an important part of any experience and it is important to make sure our feedback has representation from non-technical users as well. Feel free to reach out to me directly with your thoughts on the topic at Jarosenthal@alteryx.com.
We also have a few research projects coming up and would love to include participants like you, if you’re interested. There is a participant survey you can fill out so we can reach out for appropriate projects in the future. Not only does your feedback impact our decisions - we also give out gifts as a thank you for participation. Below is a link to the survey if you’re interested; feel free to share it with anyone else you think would be interested in, as well!