[haiku] Re: Haiku Inc: Proposed Annual Budget

  • From: "Jorge G. Mare" <koki@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: haiku@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sun, 22 Nov 2009 09:53:54 -0800

Hallo Joachim,

Humdinger wrote:
I have no doubt that you put some thought into it and your proposal is a quite possible scenario.

Well, it did not sound that way at all considering what you said in your previous email, and I quote: "I'm not sure it's a good idea to include such a speculative amount into a budget that should be reliable. I take it, the sum of $5,500 is a realistic one, considering past donations etc.," but I digress. :)

All of the above in consideration, I think it just boils down to whether you think about your budget as a tool that can potentially bring growth or not.

IMO, the budget can only convey the estimations and plans of the project. After all the essentials ("minimal budget") are financed, it doesn't really matter if the dev-column states $5,000 or $25,000. It's how to get the necessary donations and I doubt these are influenced by a number in the budget.

A budget is a reflection of your priorities, and as such, having a number is VERY important. Specifically in this case, it is much more compelling to say "we want to spend 70% of our budget on development" than to say "we need $xxxx to cover our costs, and anything above that will be used for development."

If there were no specific, meticulously planned projects ready to start, the motivation to donate would diminish.

Yes, you are right that having a specific goal against which people can donate can be crucial from a motivation POV. I am just not sure the meticulously planned project approach is what Haiku needs, unless what those projects are tied to advancing development in such a way that it helps reaching the next full release version (ie., R1). Steering funds towards features that are known to be a requirement for a R1 would be IMO the best way to use the donations, although it may not be the best in terms of motivation for everyone, as the "I want/need XXXX now syndrome" can get in the way. :)

The donations page should state the budget and a donation-meter to indicate "milestones" on the way to the next project (Matt mentioned that kind of Haikuware bouty meter on IRC). And of course a list of ready-to-start projects. The latter is probably the hardest part: you need a well defined project with the right size, a dev with time to work for less money, the motivation and skill, and possibly other regulars doing some mentoring.
But that's for another thread...

Very focused donation drives (like HCD) are known to be much more effective than dripping donations. So, in addition to the ongoing donations and subscriptions, it would still be worth trying to take the HCD-style short-lived donation drive and repurpose it to fund development milestones.

I think keeping a minimum budget plus an unlimited donation dependent dev-budget makes sense, but if the decision is to put some number down, I wouldn't mind that much either. The important thing is to find a way to motivate donations.

The key motivation IMHO is to show how the donated funds will turn into actual code. In that context, the best would be to get a Haiku core developer to work on the R1 areas of Haiku that are still missing. I think this would be an effective motivator.

I think this is doable from a funding perspective, even if it meant hiring the developer only part-time. However, whether there is a developer able to deliver and willing to be hired to work on Haiku or not, that's what I am not so sure about.


Jorge/aka Koki

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