Re: roadmap status update/update request

allow voluntary up front contributions but the user chooses which bounty to attach it to so popular stuff quickly builds up into big bounties

At first sounds good, but there is a problem here:
Quickly, a casual user will need to pay more than he would normally pay Apple or MS to buy their products every 1-2 years (and I must say here, I get way more new features each year with new Mac OS X versions than I get with Gnome's timed releases). For example, for my 20 feature requests I might need to pledge around $1000 for all of them. While this is still extremely cheap considering that consultant work is about $200 per hour in US, we still talking about OSS which should be cheaper and be more friendly to "customers", aka users. Also, this gets quickly very expensive for the users and the whole thing is bound to fail.

And this brings me to the second point: I would not like to see a bounty be more than $2000, no matter the feature's complexity. If we get 5-6 features ending up having crazy amounts of money in them, even if they are trivial to implement, we end up with these two new problems: 1. Other features that might really need fixing will get "forgotten" because there are no bounties on them, or the bounties are too low. 2. Might create a new standard of how gnome works and developers would refuse to code for something without getting paid. It might sound stupid now, but if this bounty thing works, that's what will devs expect in the future, by default: money.

What I am trying to say is, that "auctioning bounties" are _dangerous_ to the Gnome project. Instead, if a fixed amount of money is given by people every year and then the Foundation distributes some of that money to most active developers, I think it would be most cost-efficient for both users and the project without the dangers of having the devs working for money alone. Every 3 months, the Foundation would release activity logs (in a "glorious top-20" kind of thing) and share the money accordingly. This would get the devs motivated instead of having them thinking "I don't want to work for annoying users for only 1000 bucks". Also, there would be the actual competition between developers, which can also keep them motivated.


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