[clug] Re: pay for software (was Bluetooth mice)

David Tulloh david at tulloh.id.au
Tue Oct 2 00:12:37 GMT 2007

Hugh Fisher wrote:
> It depends on whether you want your computing environment to remain
> uncorrupted by the evil of commercial software, or get your own
> work done. When your choices are A) wait for someone in the FOSS
> community to decide your problem is worth solving, B) hire a coder
> to spend a year writing the program you need, C) spend two or more
> years learning to code it yourself, or D) buy a copy of MS Windows
> and then a $500 proprietary program, it's a no-brainer for D if
> the problem is at all important and/or urgent.
> MS Windows isn't dominant just because of Microsofts dirty tricks.
> There are tens of thousands of programs for MS Windows that are
> genuinely useful/necessary, and don't run on anything else. (Yes,
> there are tens of thousands for programs for Linux. 60% of them
> are text editors and 30% are IDEs and new Web server libraries.)
> Communal sharing is fine, but paying people to do stuff works
> better.
I think that at $500 you are getting into the field of specialised 
software.  I think that standard commercial pressures are a much better 
motivator for that kind of software.  At work I use a program that costs 
roughly $10,000 per year and we'd probably pay more if there was a 
competing product that didn't suck as much.  Getting them to support 
Linux is a fairly difficult problem and really has to come down to 
demand from customers.

I believe the original topic was computer-phone connectivity which I 
think is far more viable for an open source project.  I'm a fan of 
bounty systems myself, you contribute money to the project and mark it 
for a particular bug, whoever fixes the bug gets the cash.


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