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omro
Hi All,

I was wondering. How many zaurus users actively view these forums?

I was also wondering how many of those would donate money towards Zaurus software development?

Maybe we should organise a fundraiser, get everyone on the forums to donate 5 pounds to a central pot and from there it could be spent amongst the main software development projects.

Or if I had to pay a 5 pound membership fee a year in order to get at ALL the zaurus downloads, i.e. the apps or the OS updates, I'd be willing to pay that because I'd know my money was going to a good place.

I'd rather donate centrally to a place that spread my money amongst the worthy causes of the Zaurus world than show favouritism to one project. All projects advance the platform in my view.
bam
im in
lardman
QUOTE
Or if I had to pay a 5 pound membership fee a year in order to get at ALL the zaurus downloads, i.e. the apps or the OS updates, I'd be willing to pay that because I'd know my money was going to a good place.


It's no longer free then. I'd prefer to go the donation route.

You can already donate to OpenZaurus and pdaXrom, not sure about the others, but why not just donate directly?


Si

P.S. It's not just about money, donation of time (writing docs, tracking and patching bugs, testing extending) are in fact probably far more valuable (as no-one, other than sashz perhaps, can afford to live on donations alone - time's the thing most developers are short of).
omro
I wish I could code, I wouldn't even know where to start, a lot of the linux related talk on here goes above my head. I always feel like I'm missing a step when I read some of these conversations.

I just thought that if there was a fund raiser or a subscription, then there would be a guaranteed source of income for these projects. Nothing wrong with that surely, I wasn't suggesting absurd amounts of money that most software developers charge.
CoreDump
QUOTE(omro @ Jun 19 2005, 08:54 PM)
I wish I could code, I wouldn't even know where to start, a lot of the linux related talk on here goes above my head. I always feel like I'm missing a step when I read some of these conversations.

I just thought that if there was a fund raiser or a subscription, then there would be a guaranteed source of income for these projects. Nothing wrong with that surely, I wasn't suggesting absurd amounts of money that most software developers charge.
*


IMO a subscription should be completly voluntary (sp?)
Having "to pay" for updates would suck big time, but that's just my opinion.
omro
QUOTE(CoreDump @ Jun 19 2005, 12:38 PM)
IMO a subscription should be completly voluntary (sp?)
Having "to pay" for updates would suck big time, but that's just my opinion.
*


However, IMO paying for quality updates would be worth a minor expense. If you think about it, it's all to do with numbers. If there are hundreds or thousands of Zaurus users or even the other platforms that use embedded linux, if they all gave a small amount of money each year to a central point, and I mean a small amount, that would build up to be a nice source of development oriented revenue that the developers could use to make the updates significantly better.

P.S. I am not in any way detracting from the quality of the current updates. But I would be willing to bet that if the developers had more money to spend on developing, they'd have increased output.
xjqian
I'm in. I think it's a good course. If we can get it going, my personal cap is $100/yr.

Have a central deposit is a good way to encourage development and avoid reinventing the wheel. I'm in the academic, so this sounds to me a lot like NIH grant application/reviewing/funding mechanism. I think we need at least 2-3 members serving the editorial and admin. position for this project. The task will be

1) help determine the projects to be funded (member voting + brief peer review)
2) monitor the progress of funded project, bimonthly editorial to let the donors and z community know the progress of funded projects.
3) award announcement (project of the year or something...)
4) annual summary: income + outcome, donors names, project summary, etc..
4) ...

need to know:

1) the scale of the money (how much are we actually talking about ?)
2) length of the funding period (semi-anually/anually?)
3) review committee members
4) award mechanism to encourage innovative and new project, while maintain the evolution of the mature projects
5) ...

so before going into details:
1) developers: do you care such amount of money? or more of an honor?
2) Z community: are you willing to see such a project? as OP said: are you in? and How much?

I don't think now is the time to be optimistic, but I have to mention this. This is what vendors/manufactures really believe: numbers, "$". If such project is running well for couple of years, we can show the financial report to, say Sharp. Until they see the numbers, they won't be convinced how much energy and enthusiasm is within the Z community. Then we might be able to expand the project, not only limited to software development.
craigtyson
There is one problem with a central fund. It can all to quickly become an EU style political entity with more time spent on working out who gets what for which thing and how to allocate funds..... What might be a better idea is a support forum for select projects and a small fee to join / post support queries on those forums. This would need to tie in to who actualy answers the queries but would be one way of putting somthing back in to the people who spend man years giving us users a decent environment to use on Z.
the_oak
I also would not mind contributing $5 or $10 per month to help development if there was a way to regulate how it works without using all contributions for regulating costs. One other thing to consider is how to know if I am contributing toward a sl-5500 piece of software or something that would run on my 6000.
xjqian
totally agreed. every penny should go to the developers. all executive work need people to volunteer their time. This is a good opportunity for people who want to contritube to the community but don't have coding skill. In my opinion, a central deposit is a complement to direct donation. We don't want developers to feel this central deposit diverts the direct funding. With that said, I'm wondering how many direct donation developers got. If the developers are satisfied with what they got right now. This thread is a moot point. So we really need developers to speak out. Don't be shy, if you need money, raise your hand.

depending on how much projects need to be funded and how much money we can raise. the exact funding mechanism can be simplified or become more advanced.

the details about different rom and model can be worked out. I remember when my college ask for alumini donation. They give you the choice to direct your donation to school of law, engineering, art & sci, business or general purpose. We can conceive a similar mechanism.

so far about $200/yr is alleged here. I can try to draft a funding announcement to outline the funding mechanism for critisim.
omro
I wasn't thinking as high as 200 dollars a year, I was thinking less so that more people would contribute, if you make the amount too high, people will be put off.

I was thinking a central pot, a certain number of projects able to draw money from it and each getting an equal amount.
xjqian
there's no requirement here. It's all voluntary. Every penny counts. The amount you donate will not be a reflect of how supportive you are. Any amount is welcome. I was just saying, adding up mine $100 and "$5 or $10 per month" by the_oaks. We've got $200/yr already. We want to have an estimate of how much we could raise per year. And then can conceive how many projects to be funded.
xjqian
Attached is the best I can come up with tonight. If there's enough interest, we can talk about the details.

This is just my personal opinion. Since ROm development is the general interest of everybody, we can invite Cacko, OZ, pdaXrom and Guylhem as reviewer committee of the fund. Each of them can get 10%-20% of the general purpose fund for their reviewing efforts and that's good for their rom development too.
seed
that would defintly a ood idea to have a general fund for zaurus devellopement and i love the voting process but i think it will be better i the the committe chose first a set of project (base on some criteria that have to be discuss frst) then propose them to the ZUG communoty for voting and then the fund is share proportionaly to the vote.
is it time to think to a unified rom for all z model is think we wasting a lot of ressource by having more than one ROM(may be two) even if i understand that ROM are not made for the same process
adf
er.... the thing about that is that the roms are made by enthusiasts.... I kinda doubt you will find happy developers working on stuff they don't like for minimal pay. Maybe I'm wrong, but for an extreme case what if you decide that everything should be done with gcc 2.95? I think the oz folks will opt out. The qtopia folks..well lpotter... don't seem too enthusiaastic about killing backward compatibility-- no joy there if you want gcc3.x or kernel 2.6. The pdaX guys (though I'v read much less speculation from them) seem pretty happy with pdaX..etc..

I think--nice a a single purpose might be--that we users lack a coherent view, the developers hjave specialties and likes and dislikes and things as they are are pretty much how they will be for at least a while.

just my u$.02
lardman
QUOTE
I think--nice a a single purpose might be--that we users lack a coherent view, the developers hjave specialties and likes and dislikes and things as they are are pretty much how they will be for at least a while.


To get people to do stuff which is not of major interest to them, you'll have to pay them for their time - this meansthat they actually work full-time/part-time doing this work. I'm not sure you'll be able to scrape together enough cash to get people to throw in their current jobs and start working part-time + money from the pot.

Possibly a more productive method would be to offer bounties (à la Gnome/Mozilla bounties) for achieving a given task, this has the advantage that different projects would appeal to different people, plus it would achieve the main geek reason for coding (other than personal interest) - kudos (and the money wouldn't be the main reason for doing it - so no-one would need to give up jobs, and the donations wouldn't need to be so large).

Just my opinion of course.


Si

P.S. I'm not sure what happens with Mozilla/Gnome, but I think it might be worth making people register their interest for a given project so that we don't have lots of people all doing the same thing (there aren't many of us, so cooperation rather than competition should be the name of the game IMHO)
omro
QUOTE(lardman @ Jun 20 2005, 01:12 AM)
Possibly a more productive method would be to offer bounties (à la Gnome/Mozilla bounties) for achieving a given task


Isn't it cool how an idea sparks new ideas :-)

I'd not even thought of it as that, I'd just thought central pot, equal cut to each set of developers, thank them for their hard work and offer a bit of encouragement.

I do like the idea of incentivising developers to work on certain things, though that would mean setting up a steering group to decide what those goals might me.
dz
If you guys can hold off on the donating for a little bit, I'd imagine the non-profit paperwork should be finished in a little bit. All your donations could be donated to the OESF and then be tax deductible. One of our main goals of the OESF is to get donations and feed it back out to the developers.

Mike would know more details about that though.
ev1l
QUOTE(omro @ Jun 19 2005, 06:49 AM)
I was wondering. How many zaurus users actively view these forums?
*

You can check that yourself. Take a look at the forum's load stats from time to time, you should get a pretty good idea.

QUOTE(omro @ Jun 19 2005, 06:49 AM)
I was also wondering how many of those would donate money towards Zaurus software development?

I can already donate to whichever project deserves it and is accepting donations.
I prefer to contribute by helping develop software, but if I wanted to donate to anyone accepting gifts, it wouldn't be a problem.

QUOTE(omro @ Jun 19 2005, 06:49 AM)
Maybe we should organise a fundraiser, get everyone on the forums to donate 5 pounds to a central pot and from there it could be spent amongst the main software development projects.

Who's going to manage that fund? Why not let the users manage whom them give to themselves?

QUOTE(omro @ Jun 19 2005, 06:49 AM)
Or if I had to pay a 5 pound membership fee a year in order to get at ALL the zaurus downloads, i.e. the apps or the OS updates, I'd be willing to pay that because I'd know my money was going to a good place.

Again, who's going to manage that fund? What system would you propose to divide the funds between projects?
If I *had* to pay for software updates or forum access I'd simply contribute elsewhere. I'd support KDEPIMPI on another forum, and work on another wiki.

QUOTE(omro @ Jun 19 2005, 06:49 AM)
I'd rather donate centrally to a place that spread my money amongst the worthy causes of the Zaurus world than show favouritism to one project. All projects advance the platform in my view.

Ah, I think that's where we'll agree to disagree.
Case in point: I contribute to KDE Pim/PI because I think the philosophy behind it is sound, I wouldn't want to contribute to any projects where the average user needs to read pages of doc before he can use his PDA to do whatever he wants.
In my particular case, I would have sold my Z ages ago were it not for KDEPIMPI, so I contribute to that. I wouldn't want projects that aren't user-centric to profit from a common fund, but I totally understand it's just one of many opinions.
I'd say let users vote with their money: good software will be supported (if not financially, at least with contributions), bad/unfriendly software won't get financed, and it seems just fine to me that way.
craigtyson
This goes with what I was saying once a central fund was established you get lots and I do mean lots of headaches managing and executing the fund... It can lead to legle action (as iv just come out of a day sitting in a courthouse to try a case involving another bunch of enthusiasts who thought it would be a good idea to create a fund to help out) which end up giving all the money to lawyers.

I would be happy to support a bounty system and continue to encourage system sites to put paypal donation links on their sites to help fund their projects. But as has been said I dont think its possable to fund a comercialy viable development team just to support the Z. For myself an ex pascal programer I use the Z more as a techno puzzel box and entertainment system than a comersial tool. There are lots of times I would love to give them out to the company users I support but without a manufacturors warrantee or support I cann't even think about it.

So please be verry verry carfull before drawing up any agreements where by funds and a comunity of avid enthusiasts is concerned. It could be the start of WWIII..................
offroadgeek
Roy is right... that is one of the reasons why we're creating the OESF as a non-profit. As an update for all (sorry for the slight side track), the OESF is incorporated in Minnesota as a charitable nonprofit organization. (it was just incorporated in California before I moved wink.gif ). Next step is to complete the paperwork to obtain both federal and state tax exempt status. The federal process is a bit more complicated (63 pages of instructions!) and required to complete prior to obtaining state exempt status.

Right now, I personally like the bounty concept to promote development of applications, which is why I've stated my (financial) support for the FM radio card driver. I figure that if anyone feels like donating to the development of this, I could at least match the dollars donated. If no one donates to the effort, then the community has stated their interest (or lack there of) and I've not lost any money.

I envision the OESF being the facilitator of such bounty style projects, offering both organizational and financial support. Also, once we're properly tax exempt, I will pursue grants and larger (corporate) donations to fund hardware procurement for development teams, and someday maybe even funding actual development through hiring people (longer term goal)!

So, if anyone wants us to setup a bounty project for a specific development need, just let me know and I would be more than happy to help facilitate it. smile.gif
ScottYelich
cacko knows how much and how often I donate... and my desire to also have
a bounty.

I pay for quality software/development and to support the community (ie: wikipedia, etc).

I am lucky that I can afford to do this little bit at this time. For those who can not
donate money, donating time/effort with docs and feedback is also a good thing,
although it won't buy vod^H^H^H food or pay the rent. :-)

Scott
craigtyson
Maybe its time to take a poll of the forum users? There are some good ideas here and it looks like we're leaning toward bounties at the mo.
craigtyson
Just slightly off topic how about a set of OE awwards... Best this / best that / awward for best support / etc. ???
pgas
Note that now you can donate:

- to cacko : http://my-zaurus.narod.ru/
- to OE/OZ developers: http://openzaurus.org/wordpress/developers/
- to pdaxrom: http://www.pdaxrom.org
- to these forums: http://www.zaurususergroup.org/
omro
Is it possible to donate to a US non profit organisation from abroad?

I still prefer the idea of a subscription basis, even if it's only a small amount.

I do like the idea of a bounty, because... no offence to the developers... I'm sure they concentrate on things which are perfect for them and other people with advanced skills, rather than on things which average, everyday people want or can use. It's the average, everyday person that makes a product a success, look at the iPod, so easy, anyone could use it. The zaurus and linux related mobile computing still makes me feel like I need some major additional education! lol But back to my point, a bounty could be used to encourage the development of more average everyday userfriendly and productive software for the platform.
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