LinuxMCE Forums

General => Users => Topic started by: ZaPHoN on May 04, 2012, 06:15:55 am

Title: How big of a donation?
Post by: ZaPHoN on May 04, 2012, 06:15:55 am
Just wondering what kind of milestones could be set for LinuxMCE based on a specific amount of donation?

$10,000 =
$100,000 =
$250,000 =
$fill in the blank =


This is not a philosophical question.
Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: golgoj4 on May 04, 2012, 06:33:26 am
many i would imagine.

-golgoj4
Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: Esperanto on May 04, 2012, 12:26:03 pm
I suppose he's wiling to donate but wants to know what can be done for a specified amount. I suppose that once it gets above $100K then people might be considering doing it full time for a while. I have no idea how the money is spend. Maybe it is wise to specify how much you would be willing to donate and have the devs make a proposal what they can reasonably promise to finish in x amount of time for that amount.
Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: golgoj4 on May 05, 2012, 05:39:07 am
Honestly, there are lots of things to be done. But its a matter of coordinating with individual developers for targeted stuff that contributes to the larger ecosystem. I dont think a lump donation so much as how much to finish Qorbiter for example ;)

-golgoj4
Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: davegravy on May 05, 2012, 06:30:09 am
Ok but what is the next step in this dialog? Should the donor list the areas of the project he is interested in contributing to, and then devs with matching interests can respond with proposals for work scope and cost?

How do other open source projects handle these sorts of queries?
Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: Techstyle on May 07, 2012, 07:05:06 pm
ZaPHoN,

What do you have in Mind?
Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: PreDeToR_ on May 31, 2012, 04:19:11 pm
Hi Guys

I like the idea of donating for a specific feature.
Although it might/will benefit everybody, donating to have a feature top of the todo list, I think is worth while.

For example:
Improving the build process so that we can upgrade to newer versions of Ubuntu easier, which in-turn allows the system to support more hardware.
MD on screen display/interface(if we get people with the look, we might get more interest in the system and therefore more people to donate/work on it)

I would love to spend time working on the syste, but I simply do not have the time at the moment to be able to help :(

But for the people that have the time, this might help make it either worth their time or be able to distract them to add a feature the is important to someone else.

Anyway, I would love to hear more from the guys that are actually working on the system dev wize at the moment.
Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: l3mce on May 31, 2012, 08:39:31 pm
Hi Guys

I like the idea of donating for a specific feature.
Although it might/will benefit everybody, donating to have a feature top of the todo list, I think is worth while.

For example:
Improving the build process so that we can upgrade to newer versions of Ubuntu easier, which in-turn allows the system to support more hardware.

There is nothing wrong with the build process... the problem is the amount of gears necessary to support the features we have while everything changes upstream. Think of it like this... a project like xbmc has 12 gears, and it tells the time very well. LMCE has 35,000 gears and it handles every measurement of time and space, on land, in space or under water... and when one of those gears breaks it has a ripple effect stopping everything... so almost nothing works until almost everything works. Things are only made to work by being rewritten, and there are like 5 guys writing code.

MD on screen display/interface(if we get people with the look, we might get more interest in the system and therefore more people to donate/work on it)

One of the five guys is working on that.

I would love to spend time working on the syste, but I simply do not have the time at the moment to be able to help :(

A cop, a priest, and a programmer walk into a bar... stop me if you have heard this before...

But for the people that have the time, this might help make it either worth their time or be able to distract them to add a feature the is important to someone else.

Anyway, I would love to hear more from the guys that are actually working on the system dev wize at the moment.

Yes. I want your money.

Before anything like this was setup, there would have to be an approval panel, indicating when milestones were reached, or if it is an all or nothing scenario... when it was "done"... how many bugs can be expected... and someone would have to deal with the complaints and varying levels of dissatisfaction etc. If people are incentivized to do projects, they will not upload their code until it is finished, or there will be squabbling if someone corrects/adds to it... If it is milestone based, people will not ever complete the end result... It sounds like a nightmare to me...

But yes... I want your money.
Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: jamo on June 07, 2012, 09:26:13 am
There is nothing wrong with the build process...

L3, have you seen uplink's comments on the sticky thread at the top regarding the build process... your thoughts on that? Is he on the wrong track there?

A cop, a priest, and a programmer walk into a bar... stop me if you have heard this before...
I haven't, please post the rest ;-)
Yes. I want your money.
Pity the original poster seems to have bailed from the discussion. I do think it's a very interesting discussion and the points you (L3mce) raise are equally valid. Financial considerations have a way of focussing things that can misdirect and apply all the wrong incentives... but surely there is potential for it to be a positive thing just in terms of assisting with resourcing. Would like to see more discussion on it.
Before anything like this was setup, there would have to be an approval panel, indicating when milestones were reached, or if it is an all or nothing scenario... when it was "done"... how many bugs can be expected... and someone would have to deal with the complaints and varying levels of dissatisfaction etc. If people are incentivized to do projects, they will not upload their code until it is finished, or there will be squabbling if someone corrects/adds to it... If it is milestone based, people will not ever complete the end result... It sounds like a nightmare to me...

But yes... I want your money.
Please shoot down in flames... I'm very very new to linuxmce, the community etc so I'm sure I will have the culture all wrong... but would it be so bad if there were a mechanism by which someone could "buy" a dev's time to work on a particular feature that would assist them and the agreement/arrangement could be purely between the dev(s) involved and the user. There could be some basic principles, for example, that any code generated is free and open to all when done and that the user who paid cannot object if it is later modified or changed as part of LMCE (they can always fork their own bit if they don't like that or whatever). Then the agreement is really just between the individual parties and only the dev(s) and users involved worry about whether the end result meets the requirement.
Could something like that not allow some devs to potentially set aside more time than they currently do because now they could be remunerated for that extra time? And hopefully the very simple and basic rules like I suggested would mean that the things that get done are not *bad* for the project.... they're just things that might not have been at the top of the priority list otherwise... so they actually contribute to the project overall AND allow for extra resourcing because devs are able to commit more time overall due to the remuneration possibility. Maybe, it would even incentivise more people to get involved in development, realising if they skilled up appropriately, they could potentially be compensated for their time?

Just thoughts ;-)

Big thanks to all the devs for their awesome contribution of time. Certainly the last thing I would like to see is the open nature of this amazing project being compromised. But it is possibly something that coudl be discussed.
Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: JaseP on June 07, 2012, 08:23:17 pm
It would be nice to have a system to earmark donations for specific work, and also allow for general funding... Bylaws can be set up for funnelling portions of earmarked donations towards the whole, too (kind of a general LinuxMCE "tax" on earmarked donations). Just a thought.
Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: ZaPHoN on June 08, 2012, 10:28:21 pm
Haven't bailed.

Reading digesting and thinking.
My thoughts so far.


Aside from taking the steps Dianemo has there must be a way to stage, allow freelance application and monitoring.

Seeing what Asterisk, OpenERP and Ubuntu have achieved in their ecosystems it strikes me as not being impossible to meet paid milestones.

The reason I originally suggested this in the first place is to try and funnel some money into a LMC ecosystem with results similar to or exceeding that of Dianemo.

For example, I know of a few home security and automation specialists that serve residential, commercial and government clients. They are keenly interested in where LMC is heading and wish something like Dianemo was available in North America with the exception of offering UPB as well.

Please continue as I believe this is a very healthy topic of discussion that could only benefit the future of LMC if this topic would evolve into reality.






Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: davegravy on June 08, 2012, 11:51:53 pm
I'm trying to get graphic designers (including friends and family) interested in helping with the skinning for qorbiter. Unlike the programming world there doesn't seem to be a pool of designers interested in volunteering their services to a project like this, as designers seem to be approached daily for these things and have a hard enough time making ends meat without these time sinks.

 golgoj's efforts at getting a competition going are valiant and hopefully they bear fruit. If we had a donation scheme in place however, a grand or two in fees could get us what we're looking for.

I suppose I'm advocating the spelling out of what the community (or devs) feel the project NEEDS, and giving donors the option of donating towards those goals.
Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: golgoj4 on June 09, 2012, 05:20:39 am
I'm trying to get graphic designers (including friends and family) interested in helping with the skinning for qorbiter. Unlike the programming world there doesn't seem to be a pool of designers interested in volunteering their services to a project like this, as designers seem to be approached daily for these things and have a hard enough time making ends meat without these time sinks.

 golgoj's efforts at getting a competition going are valiant and hopefully they bear fruit. If we had a donation scheme in place however, a grand or two in fees could get us what we're looking for.

I suppose I'm advocating the spelling out of what the community (or devs) feel the project NEEDS, and giving donors the option of donating towards those goals.


Please note that the following is MY personal list of things I HAVE to do or I will consider my contributions to linuxmce incomplete. There is no timeline for completion. Much of its in my head. By opting to go with qOrbiter, i bit off a rather large piece and im still chewing

*On screen web browser
*media playback on phone
*voice commands
*kinect integration
*better upnp integration
*torrent integration
*social network integration

and thats off the top of my head...
Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: posde on June 09, 2012, 11:21:49 am
I do invest time into LinuxMCE. I invest LOTS of time into LinuxMCE. But I do it on MY rules. I start something, let it sit for a while, and maybe or maybe not continue it. I don't spend time on LinuxMCE for money. I spend time on LinuxMCE for fun. And as I have said a few milleniums ago on whether or not I want to become a professional sportsmen, I say it now for LinuxMCE. I am in it for the fun. As soon as money gets involved, there are obligations. I already have obligations outside of LinuxMCE, and don't want to have additional obligations.

Some dev's do it for money apart from the fun prospect. If you want to get something specific done, go and approach TSchak. He has shown his great work in the past, both paid for and free work. This is something that works. But don't expect to get by with peanuts. Developing for someone else costs time. This time needs to be paid for. And the hourly rate doesn't get lower because it is for LinuxMCE.
Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: bongowongo on June 14, 2012, 09:39:50 am
But this is not new.
If I am not mistaken there where special projects where you could pay TSCHAK and he will do it.
But I agree with possy that for the majority this project is a hobby, the fun factor should still be there.
 
We would have to find a modus where we can do both.
Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: JaseP on June 14, 2012, 05:50:40 pm
I think the best way to accomplish that would be a kind of pledge/bid system, where a sponsor puts up a pledge of a certain amount of cash for a particular thing, and then devs can bid on whether they want to follow it up or not, almost like a mini-modified Kickstarter. But I reiterate that there should probably  be some percentage that goes into a pool for general LinuxMCE upkeep and development (website maintenance, projects the community or a board can vote on, etc.).

Under a system like the above, devs would be free to refuse/reject/ignore requests, payment not need be made until an agreement is reached between parties, but if "the house" sponsors the payment system, they could "skim" the house "tax," as well as set up an arbitration system for handling disputes (e.g.: "I did the work," vs. "Yeah, but it's not what I agreed to pay for," type disputes).

Bylaws could govern how the community helps arbitrate disputes. Both parties would have to agree to the alternate dispute process, and completion funds could be essentially held in escrow, awaiting either accepted feature completion, or the community settling disagreements about it.
Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: davegravy on June 14, 2012, 07:38:22 pm
But this is not new.
If I am not mistaken there where special projects where you could pay TSCHAK and he will do it.
But I agree with possy that for the majority this project is a hobby, the fun factor should still be there.
 
We would have to find a modus where we can do both.

There's a consensus that there's a lack of developers on this project, right?. While it's ideal to have developers join the team out of their own interests and for fun, isn't the next best thing to hire them with donated money?

I liken this to my ongoing home reno. For fun, I wanted to do the whole thing myself, and I am capable, but it would just take too long... so I hired a contractor to install flooring and for a few other tasks.

If we manage to make even bigger strides with some hired help, wouldn't that feed back into more (for-fun) developer interest?
Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: posde on June 14, 2012, 07:44:59 pm
The problem is: You need to spend lots of hours to understand LinuxMCE architecture. You need to spend time doing the actual task. And devs aren't cheap, you are looking at a couple of thousand EUR for even simple tasks. I doubt that people are willing to spend that much money.

When it comes to donating, as we have seen in the past, most people think in terms of low two digit values. Well, you have to have a lot of donors to even get to 4 digits, let alone to mid to high four digits, when hiring "external" people.

The idea about donation is a cool thing. From my experience in the past, it just doesn't really work for a non-business system like LinuxMCE.
Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: JaseP on June 14, 2012, 08:34:38 pm
I look at it more as a kind of "tips" and steering kind of thing,... Kind of like giving someone some cash to pick up on project first, before turning to others they may have been planning on doing... I was not even thinking about "outside" help.

However, I was thinking about it in terms of donations in the three digit range,... spare time stuff,... like, "cool I could use that extra cash to get a new MD or new peripherals," type of thing... not full time employment stuff...
Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: tschak909 on June 14, 2012, 08:35:43 pm
To put it into perspective, the GYR3101 work took approximately 16 people to donate towards. It took me 2 days of constant work to get it working... It was $2000 for that feature, and it paid my rent that month (as I was completely broke for almost 4 months at that time).

-Thom
Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: JaseP on June 14, 2012, 08:40:40 pm
Well,... you could always have classes of donations,... Like; "tip jar," "thank yous," and "OK, so I gots me a blank check here, what'll it take,"...
Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: l3mce on June 14, 2012, 10:59:27 pm
Ok then. Lets try.

Who wants something, how much money are they willing to contribute, how much support can they get?

Make a thread, and a commitment. If enough people glom on, and somebody who knows what they are doing thinks it is acceptable they will say I can do it.
Once terms are set, you can paypal the money to posde, with the understanding that this money is gone.

If the terms are not met, then posde keeps the money for the thankless job of maintaining this project, paying for the bandwidth and storage, handling the package management and the rest of the endless list of things he does so we can debate about how to improve it.

If terms are met within the timeframe, then posde keeps 10% for being the trustee and all of the afore mentioned.

So:
What you want
When you feel it should be due
What you are willing to pay
Your pitch, to get others to contribute, 5 20 100 whatever... it can add up.
Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: tkmedia on June 15, 2012, 05:26:49 am
Some how in general I think donations get overlooked in this community. :'(

With over 10k spent on testing hardware over the last several years.  lmcecompatible.com has not received one donation, that I recall. ( With the possible exception of platypus whose Tank Stick I still owe him)

And how many actually hit the donate button on the home page.

However I do thank those who have made purchases.

As far as  Dianemo they are available in North America and they probably could add support for what you need.
You do realize for commercial use you would need a licensed product like Dianemo.
lmcecompatible can also offer Dianemo licensed systems.

Happy donating

Tim


Title: Re: How big of a donation?
Post by: KlfJoat on June 27, 2012, 09:19:18 pm
Of the methods I know for funding open source projects, only the following three would seem to work for LinuxMCE:

1. Donate
2. Bounty
3. Sponsor

For Donation, that's the "tip jar" method.  What you're saying is "I like what you've done, here's some money".  This is usually seen as "general" monies for the project, and tend to go toward non-personnel operating costs (hosting, test hardware, etc.).  There is no specific goal, other than the overall support of the project.  See: Donate button on LMCE.org.

Sponsorships are when a (typically commercial) outside entity gets involved.  They usually rely on the product and want to see it continued and improved.  There may or may not be a specific agenda for a commercial sponsorship, but it's generally assumed that their involvement will steer the project in ways beneficial to the commercial entity, while simultaneously enriching the project as a whole.  Hypothetically this would be represented by Dianemo paying a salary to l3mce for his work on LMCE.  But I don't see this happening here at the moment.

I think there is some real potential for a Bounty program in LMCE.  This can be as small as one individual and one developer agreeing to pay for implementation of a feature or piece of hardware, or as large as Kickstarter projects (which are a type of multi-donor bounty system).  One good example is that I have a Vista 20p alarm system, but unfortunately did not get a VistaICM.  I am no programmer, so I would find it invaluable to be able to pay someone to integrate either the new VistaICM replacement or the AD2USB device.  Given some of the other posts in the forums, others may find such a driver useful as well, and if everyone contributes then everyone wins.

There are other funding methods, but they all have governance overhead that I think is out of proportion with the size of LMCE at this time.  Take the "milestone" approach initially mentioned.   As mentioned, you'd need to set up governance structures to ensure accountability and payment.  And as the number of parties in each milestone transaction increase, you have more stakeholders, meaning more chance for disagreement and drama. 

I like the idea for testing interest in forum posts (maybe a special sub-forum for this?), and if there is a lot, maybe creating a Kickstarter project.  If only one bounty offer shows up, but is enough of an "angel investment" (able to realistically fund the entire feature themselves), then that could be a PayPal transaction between them and the dev.  Maybe a half up front/half on completion payment arrangement on small transacts like that.