ReactOS Fundraising 2012

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milon
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Re: ReactOS Fundraising 2012

Post by milon »

You guys are mostly saying what Z98 has already said in post #1:
Z98 wrote:As many of you may have noticed, the ReactOS Project has started a fundraising campaign to try and raise enough money to formally hire developers to work on the operating system. These contract based appointments are inspired by Haiku's very successful efforts, a success the ReactOS Project hopes we will be able to replicate. These contracts will seek to target specific components or functionality with the goal of making ReactOS more complete and genuinely usable by regular people.

It should be noted that these contracts would be significantly below market in terms of compensation relative to the skillsets required. The ReactOS developers have always believed in the project and their participation has never hinged on their being compensated financially. At the same time, there are practical realities and the project hopes that these contracts will permit developers to dedicate more time to ReactOS.
It's contracts based upon adding specific functionality to ROS, and the money for that comes from what all of us donate. It sounds like our primary candidates to fulfill the contracts will be the current ROS devs. That does not (in my mind) exclude the possibility of contracting devs currently outside of ROS (be they student, professional, or hobbyist), but they won't be the primary candidates.

Aeneas
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Re: ReactOS Fundraising 2012

Post by Aeneas »

I dissent. If the primary targets are the devs, then you have an obvious conflict of interest; they would judge their own performance - even if it is their fellow devs who judge it, it loses objectivity.

The idea should be, in my opinion, precisely to attract so far unrelated persons to the project. ReactOS suffers from lack of participants.

Webunny
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Re: ReactOS Fundraising 2012

Post by Webunny »

Aeneas wrote:I dissent. If the primary targets are the devs, then you have an obvious conflict of interest; they would judge their own performance - even if it is their fellow devs who judge it, it loses objectivity.

The idea should be, in my opinion, precisely to attract so far unrelated persons to the project. ReactOS suffers from lack of participants.
Well...I don't know how much it plays, but in principle you're right in saying there is a conflict in interest if the very devs who are prone to get a bonus, also have to evaluate their (or each-others) work and performance. There is no doubt about that.

The problem is, we don't get any info about that. We don't know if nor when something is decied, in this regard. What the goal is. Who is going to, determine what for whom. It's just one big black hole - which isn't really admirable, for an open-source project.

But then again, there is little we can do about anything, is there? I just wished the devs/Ros-team would be a bit more open about the goals and plans in this regard.

Z98
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Re: ReactOS Fundraising 2012

Post by Z98 »

There was never any intent to attempt to recruit outside developers for contracts. The fundraiser description was fairly explicit in that the intent was to offer contracts to core developers. I have no idea where the notion that outside developers would be suitable or desirable for such contracts came from.

milon
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Re: ReactOS Fundraising 2012

Post by milon »

It's really not a conflict of interest at all. If current ROS devs (volunteers, all of them) get offered a financial token of appreciation to keep doing what they're doing, how is that a conflict of interest? Also, anyone can be a ROS dev. You just have to fix/improve something and submit the patch in a bug report. After a few solid commits, you get your own commit access. (I think that's how it works, anyway.)

Personally, I'd like to know what contracts are being offered for, who's taking them, any progress being made, etc. But I'm mostly an end user, and end users want all kinds of feedback that isn't always realistic. I think it would be fair to make public what functionality is being contracted, though.

DOSGuy
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Re: ReactOS Fundraising 2012

Post by DOSGuy »

The fact remains that we still have no idea how the money is going to be spent, other than that there is an intention to offer contracts to core developers. We don't know if the 30,000 euros is to hire one developer for a year, or three for one month, or...

Lacking that information, we also don't know what will be done with the money if the goal isn't met. If we knew that the goal was to hire a single developer for 30,000 euros per year, then we know that 10,000 euros would hire one for four months if that's how much the campaign brings in. Alternatively, we don't know if the money will, instead, be rolled over into the next year's campaign until 30,000 euros is achieved.

The complete lack of details about how the money will be spent in the event of success or failure to achieve the campaign's donation goal is a problem. The question has been asked many times for many months, so I can only assume that there is no plan. A donation goal was agreed upon, and the powers that be will decide what to do with the money when they see how much they get.
Today entirely the maniac there is no excuse with the article. Get free DOS, Windows and OS/2 games at RGB Classic Games.

Z98
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Re: ReactOS Fundraising 2012

Post by Z98 »

"These contract based appointments are inspired by Haiku's very successful efforts"

That should have at least provided you guys with a hint of what the contracts would look like. There was a link in the initial post going to Haiku's site for a reason. If you look at the breakdown of the contracts here: http://www.haiku-inc.org/funded-development.html you'll note that none of them are more than a few thousand dollars and they're spread across multiple developers. The question of precisely how the money would be spent only cropped up very late last month in this thread. Before that, it was a bunch of people arguing about how far the money would go, with apparently no one having actually looked at Haiku's page. We're not just dropping links arbitrarily here.

Aeneas
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Re: ReactOS Fundraising 2012

Post by Aeneas »

Pardon my objection but the following sentence from the announcement:

"We wish to raise money to formally hire as many core developers as possible"

should rather then have contained "We wish... to formally hire ourselves", or otherwise "we" stands in opposition to "they, the core developers", i.e. external people; the reference to the Google Summer of Code was even further reinforcing this impression - i.e. that you want to hire NEW core devs, unrelated so far to ReactOS - as the GSoC does not have the goal to raise the salaries of the Google employees but to attract NEW and UNRELATED persons to programming in specific areas deemed of interest. You could call it a "private DARPA", to a degree.

In particular I do fail a bit to see the logic in "the fastest way to accelerate the development of ReactOS is by directly funding [THE CURRENT] developers": if you are "n" people (say, 30), and the perpetual excuse for the slow development is "we are oh so, sooo few", then I do not quite understand why having THE SAME amount of people can accelerate ANYTHING, if what they do is something that they do ANYWAY - it being their hobby. And you do not increase their count. I mean, what will they do, "take revenge", go skiing and folding origami and playing guitar and become entirely unimportant?! I thought you wish to increase your fame and monetary benefits once this whole thing picks up speed, e.g. a bit like Linus Torvalds... or even Bill Gates, for that matter, who in the beginning paid to several of his employees more than he took himself...

Apart from this, under the web page http://www.reactos.org/en/news_page_75.html, reachable over the link "Information" on the top, put visibly in connection to the donation bar, I nowhere see Haiku mentioned. Users do not have to play "hide and seek", they have to be informed in a transparent manner.

So, how DO you handle then the conflict of interest? (BTW, now "30kEUR" starts to make sense - 30 devs, each 1kEUR.) I.e., how does the public know and what procedure have you implemented that you are doing more with the donations than you would have done without the donations? How do you undertake the measurement of the causal connection between donations and performance?

I say this with all due respect before your accomplishments, but being highly intelligent people, I believe this noteworthy issue is obvious to you all no less than to myself. You do of course as you decide, it is all your project.

Other things I propose: Please check whether you MAY even do this under German law. You are very much in the area of any usual and not "non-profit" company. That brings with it certain organisational and bureaucratic requirements which you should fulfil so as not to get any kind of sanctions.

DOSGuy
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Re: ReactOS Fundraising 2012

Post by DOSGuy »

Aeneas, I think the idea is to allow the current developers to quit or take leave from their day jobs so that they can work full-time on the project. I do see the logic of using people who are very familiar with the code vs. bringing in new people who will have to extensively study the code before they can usefully contribute to it.

Ideally, we could get the current developers spending more time on the project while also bringing new developers into the fold. I would like the PR Team to work on a recruitment campaign, but the team isn't active at the moment.
Today entirely the maniac there is no excuse with the article. Get free DOS, Windows and OS/2 games at RGB Classic Games.

Z98
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Re: ReactOS Fundraising 2012

Post by Z98 »

The above objection seems rooted in the assumption that the people taking out contracts would only be accountable to the ReactOS Foundation. This assumption is flawed by the very nature of ReactOS development and by the fact that we would publicly publish the contracts. As such, the goals set out by the contract would be publicly viewable by people, and the work done to achieve the goals are available by nature of the fact that ROS development is open and anyone can view the commits and test the resulting builds. There is no way for the project to lie and claim that a deliverable was achieved when it wasn't, and the project has no desire to reduce its credibility by trying to pull such blatant lies.

With respect to the requirement question, the simple fact is, the majority of the people who have enough knowledge to work on ReactOS without significant training already tend to be committed to other things. The majority either work for Microsoft or work for companies writing Windows drivers (and considering the quality of many drivers, the pool of skilled system developers was not that high to begin with). The others are either already part of this project, work with Wine, or interact with us in some form already. To train a new person from scratch takes on average two years to three years, based on previous people who joined as complete newbies, and requires considerable dedication on their part. It does not happen overnight. It is those people that demonstrate this dedication that ensure ReactOS remains a viable open source project. People who join purely for monetary return will be as quick to abandon the project for lack of monetary return. As such, money is better spent on people who 1) already know what they are doing, 2) have sufficient credibility with the project to see their work through, and 3) do not seek a contract solely for the purpose of getting paid. It would be quite the exception for a completely new person to fulfill all three criteria.

Aeneas
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Re: ReactOS Fundraising 2012

Post by Aeneas »

@ Z98:

Publicly visible contracts & open checking of the results through builds or whatever sounds indeed reasonable, thank you for clarifying.

As to your commercial considerations, well, as I said, it is your project, you know it best.

Now I would like to advert your attention to another topic that I partly mentioned before:



- There is certain information you should ... let us say, "update" - it is called the "Impressum", you have done that in the past and you should do it again - to see an example of some other German websites:

http://www.morgenpost.de/impressum/arti ... essum.html

http://www.microsoft.com/de-de/corporat ... essum.aspx

http://www.drk.de/impressum.html

I can only guess that you may have tried to establish this:

http://ev.reactos.org/index_de.htm

- but you should seriously do as the companies did above, in particular the as regards to GETTING TO that page, if you understand what I mean.



- Please check whether you need a license; I think you do not, but I am by no means an expert for German law, SO CHECK FOR YOURSELF. The relevant law is usually the "Gewerbeordnung", the "Industrial Code" it is called in English I think. The principle generally is that "everything is allowed, unless it is regulated" and the Industrial Code is a "usual suspect" to check first. I think it should not be a problem, but BY ALL MEANS CHECK IT YOURSELF.

I guess that might be the law:

http://www.berlin.de/imperia/md/content ... e=gewo.pdf

The closest thing I see in it at a first look is the "Purchase and sale of high quality goods such as ... consumer electronics, computers ...", § 38 (1) 1. a), but I believe you do not do that.

On the other hand, I know that in Austria a "Verein", if that is what ReactOS is, positively NEEDS a license if it does things with the purpose of receiving any type of income, see below. The best to do in this situation is to find out the relevant German office and simply ASK THEM (in writing).



- Check whether the hiring of YOURSELVES (and I say that "free of valuation", the FACT that you want to do this itself is important) is in line with your statutes, i.e. MAY your entity do this according to its INTERNAL statutes (seriously, I have no clue) - and update those statutes accordingly. I am clueless about that entirely, but I see this:

http://ev.reactos.org/files/Satzung.pdf

I am especially suggesting a look at § 2 (1) ("wirtschaftliche Zwecke" - economic purposes).



- What you plan to do is providing to yourselves a continuing source of income. According to German courts, even the POSSIBILITY is enough that you do this (again), if you even do it just once. That is categorised as perfectly commercial activity, in fact no different than selling cars or cooking food for pay in a restaurant. You may now try to say that you do this for idalistic purposes, but you do it nonetheless. Please have a look at this:

http://www.vonex.de/Merkblaetter/niwiVerein%5B1%5D.pdf

This one is for Austria, but I think it nicely summarises things:

http://portal.wko.at/wk/format_detail.w ... nternehmer

Please have someone check Google for something like: wirtschaftliche Betätigung von Vereinen



Disclaimer: I am not an attorney and therefore I absolutely advise you to not "take my word for the stuff above", but to CHECK EVERYTHING YOURSELF. I am not responsible if you mess this up somehow. As a general rule, there are many associations, from people who build model airplanes to people who paint garden dwarves, I am sure you can ask around a bit and solve everything quickly and without problems.

janl
Posts: 53
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Re: ReactOS Fundraising 2012

Post by janl »

Would not help Reactos not to wait till end of ReactOS Fundraising Campaign 2012, but use collected money and hire already now some developers? Donors would see some progress, Reactos would be more stable and usable, that would attract more audience and perhaps more money.

Webunny
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Re: ReactOS Fundraising 2012

Post by Webunny »

Aeneas wrote:Pardon my objection but the following sentence from the announcement:

"We wish to raise money to formally hire as many core developers as possible"

should rather then have contained "We wish... to formally hire ourselves", or otherwise "we" stands in opposition to "they, the core developers", i.e. external people; the reference to the Google Summer of Code was even further reinforcing this impression - i.e. that you want to hire NEW core devs, unrelated so far to ReactOS - as the GSoC does not have the goal to raise the salaries of the Google employees but to attract NEW and UNRELATED persons to programming in specific areas deemed of interest. You could call it a "private DARPA", to a degree.

In particular I do fail a bit to see the logic in "the fastest way to accelerate the development of ReactOS is by directly funding [THE CURRENT] developers": if you are "n" people (say, 30), and the perpetual excuse for the slow development is "we are oh so, sooo few", then I do not quite understand why having THE SAME amount of people can accelerate ANYTHING, if what they do is something that they do ANYWAY - it being their hobby. And you do not increase their count. I mean, what will they do, "take revenge", go skiing and folding origami and playing guitar and become entirely unimportant?! I thought you wish to increase your fame and monetary benefits once this whole thing picks up speed, e.g. a bit like Linus Torvalds... or even Bill Gates, for that matter, who in the beginning paid to several of his employees more than he took himself...

Apart from this, under the web page http://www.reactos.org/en/news_page_75.html, reachable over the link "Information" on the top, put visibly in connection to the donation bar, I nowhere see Haiku mentioned. Users do not have to play "hide and seek", they have to be informed in a transparent manner.

So, how DO you handle then the conflict of interest? (BTW, now "30kEUR" starts to make sense - 30 devs, each 1kEUR.) I.e., how does the public know and what procedure have you implemented that you are doing more with the donations than you would have done without the donations? How do you undertake the measurement of the causal connection between donations and performance?

I say this with all due respect before your accomplishments, but being highly intelligent people, I believe this noteworthy issue is obvious to you all no less than to myself. You do of course as you decide, it is all your project.

Other things I propose: Please check whether you MAY even do this under German law. You are very much in the area of any usual and not "non-profit" company. That brings with it certain organisational and bureaucratic requirements which you should fulfil so as not to get any kind of sanctions.

I agree things are still a bit unclear regarding the fundraising and spending, but you might be a wee bit *too* negative about it. While I can see the value in hiring new devs, especially new students in a GSoC-like fashion - which, let's be honest, did give a boost when we were on it - I can also see the logic in hiring the devs who already know most of the system. Which would be the core developers.

Now, viewed on itself you have a point that it makes - logically speaking - little sense in regard to the "speeding up the development of Ros", to hire the same (quantity of) devs that are already working on it. But that is just the amount of people you're talking about (the group of core devs). However, progress can not only made by (augmenting) the number of coders/devs, but also by the time they spend on it. Which I basically already said in my former post: if, instead of doing it as a side-along, in their spare time, as a hobby...they can do it instead full time, focused on it and as a dedicated workforce - then obviously this is going to speed up development considerably too.

So I don't think it's correct, as you said, that it's useless to hire the core devs that are already working on it.

It all depends on how it is implemented, and what for.

That's why I also do not quite understand what z98 said about the 'project working'. If I understand you correctly, z98, the devs are now going to get some bonus, when they accomplish something? Say, if one gets the usbstack for usb 3.0 working, one gets 500 euro (as an example). Is that right?

In that case, I still think there is something missing, if you look at it logically, and want to spend the money as efficiently as possible (from the standpoint of speeding up Ros development). Contrary than some others might, I don't doubt the good will of the devs, and I'm sure they won't 'fraud' us, and claim things work when they don't. But that's not really the point.

What, for instance, is the gain by giving bonuses (aside from making the devs a bit more happy), if there is no time-limit set on to it, which is shorter than it normally would be (now). By that, I mean: with or without the bonus, the usb3 stack thingy will get solved, eventually. Say, it takes another 6 weeks. If we now give a bonus to the dev who makes it, but *for the rest nothing changes* then the other poster is right: it's a waste of money, if one looks rationally at it. One might claim the dev will feel a bit more happy and thus work a bit harder on it and maybe he'll finish it in 5 weeks, but really, that doesn't seem like the most efficient way to speed up things and to spend the limited resources we have on it.

The only way that things are really going to speed up - if one isn't going to hire new devs - is by having the assurance that the dev(s) in question will be spending extra dedicated time on it, be it full time or half time, but in any case, far more than they are doing now. Otherwise, it really makes little sense giving donations for just working on it as usual, since they're already doing it. Either - due to the donations - there is more time spent on it and the pace picks up, or more people are hired working on it; that are the only two main possibilities to speed up the development in an efficient way.

Thus, my question is (because you didn't quite answer this one): Is it, or is it not, going to be used to actually buy extra time of/from the core devs? Is anyone of the devs really going to say: ok, I'll quit my job, and I'll dedicate myself full-time (or half-time) on Ros, for x months?

Surely you must see the logic, z98, that to let the development of Ros go forward as fast as possible, you either augment the amount of people working on it (hiring new devs), or the amount of time that is spend on it (dedicated time of the core devs).

Is this the case, in the current plans for the donations?

andreas84
Posts: 101
Joined: Sat Oct 25, 2008 4:09 pm

Re: ReactOS Fundraising 2012

Post by andreas84 »

well there is something i wanted to suggest when i was reading along page 4 please note this is completely unconnected to the page 8 discussion! (i dont want to imply that the devs are cheating with the money!)

The fundraising picture on the top could be better designed and include a statement for what the donated money will be spend exactly.

lets say this:

3000E ] 3000E ] 3000E ] 3000E ] 3000E ] 3000E ] ....more money
-----------]----------- ] -----------]----------- ]-----------]----------- ]-----------]----------- ]-----------]----------- ]
Kernel ] Win32 ]USB ]memorym]wifi ]Installer ] To be anounced by the donator

The benefit of this could be A) people get more involved with the knowledge which might result in B) Someone want to see usb improved and will donate double till the usb field is filled.
C) Someone could donate for only a special field later on which again would raise the motivation.

Dominik2
Posts: 141
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Re: ReactOS Fundraising 2012

Post by Dominik2 »

andreas84 wrote: 3000E ] 3000E ] 3000E ] 3000E ] 3000E ] 3000E ] ....more money
-----------]----------- ] -----------]----------- ]-----------]----------- ]-----------]----------- ]-----------]----------- ]
Kernel ] Win32 ]USB ]memorym]wifi ]Installer ] To be anounced by the donator

The benefit of this could be A) people get more involved with the knowledge which might result in B) Someone want to see usb improved and will donate double till the usb field is filled.
C) Someone could donate for only a special field later on which again would raise the motivation.
+1
I really like your idea!

People could think like this: "yes, yes, 154€ to go and USB is safe!"

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