Bounty for a feature. Double dollars cold cash. Ver 2.1

General discussion about the development of the open source Blender

Moderators: jesterKing, stiv

Posts: 192
Joined: Wed Oct 16, 2002 5:35 pm

Post by leinad13 »

Well i for one am definatly against this, although my being against wont stop anything from happening. I still think that in this community me as a blender user has a say.

Imagine this situation, some rich person comes up with $1000 for a coder to implement a feature. The feature is say.... um...... the ability to calculate something o i dunno, something really crap that would only benifit them. Now all the Blender coders go $ ching! And they all start work on this feature, say this feature takes a while 2 weeks or something. Those 2 weeks could have been spent implementing a much more usfull to everyone feature.

At the moment i am quite upset with the way the Blender Foundation is turning out. I hope im not the only one but i think that a few have been dissapointed and may not post a reply to this.

I have a counter idea which in my opinion is better.

We have a group of coders that are prepared to code whatever is needed for a little bit of dough ($). Then we start a community project t encourage people to donate between £10 and £50. Then when each person donates they get to suggest a feature. Then for every £10 you donate you have a vote and you get to vote for the feature you think would be the most useful etc....

Then at teh end of the week or whenever the votes are counted and work starts on that feature. I for one would much rather be a part of this than the previous suggestion.

Another suggestion is we just charge for blender then pay people to code for it is this what we should have to do to get people motivated to implement features.

I think that people should code for blender because of their love hate relationship with it. Not because they want money. I dont mean to rude but people are not going to quit their jobs to programe for blender. So any coding they do is going to be in their spare time. I dont think that offering people money will develop blender in a good way.

It would be nice to hear from some coders what they think.
Over to you boffins


Posts: 442
Joined: Wed Oct 23, 2002 2:47 pm

Post by Money_YaY! »

last words on this untill I do an update.

Blender is free and open source, Protected by GPL. But I am sure that there are some companys using it as their own software not sharing at all and never have plans to. What about them ? They will never help out, new feautres have to come from somewhere, be it free or enticed.

Everyone can do what they like, I made sure to word everything so their are no locking rules as their is no true way to enforce them.

Now, can I please get a point vote for the armature idea :D ?


Posts: 51
Joined: Wed Oct 16, 2002 1:00 pm

Post by blendix »

There seem to be some Blender users who think Blender should be 'commercialized'. All kinds of ideas pop up about Blendercards, donations, and then there is the EU funding for Verse. Some Blender users seem to think Blender can't live without all kinds of commercial plans, or at least think the development would be faster than it has already been. Maybe the Blender Foundation needs some money for hosting websites and other things, but that's what the e-shop is for.

Blender development has been great the past few months, with awesome new features, the game engine being very seriously worked on (lots of cvs commits the last days) and a 750 page manual comming out :D. Just when everything seems to be going fine, people seem to want even more, and maybe a bit too much, IMO.

AFAIK, I have never heard any coder ask to be paid for something (although I would like their opinions). It's more like the users feel something needs to be done, although I can't imagine why. Blender's development is already faster than almost any other 3d app.

I can understand users being unhappy when their feature requests are not being implemented. They shouldn't expect it to happen, rather feel really lucky if they are actually being implemented. The amount of feature requests is huge, and there aren't enough Blender developers for that. Also, its the coders right to work on the things they like? They are doing this for fun. You simply can't demand any features. But this does lead to frustation.

So this donation thing appears to be a solution for all features that coders are not motivated to work on. I can see this is probably the only way to get them motivated. I don't think it would hurt if some coders would get paid for small, specific features. Although I think we should be really carefull with these kind of things.

Posts: 20
Joined: Sun Nov 17, 2002 10:43 am

Post by Jellybean »

I have mixed feelings about this idea.

If the stakes are too high, it could be a cause of lots of trouble and contention among developers. If the stakes are too low, they may not really be much of an incentive, and bounties not acted upon could cause frustration and bad feelings among those who contribute money.

On the other hand, I myself cannot really code worth a damn. I've looked at the blender source... and that's as far as I've got. I like the concept of being able to offer an incentive and thank you, in way of a feature bounty, to developers for taking the time to look at and possibly implementing (possibly crazy) ideas. Sort of like bidding on contract work, but in reverse.

I would not like to see feature bounties done here in some ad-hoc manner. I don't like the possible negitive impact on the community bounties could have, but that can be addressed. Having a fair system with a clear set of rules would be needed. A neutral party for resolving disputes would be necessary, also. I would very much hate to see some conflict escalate and hurt this community. Some system needs to be in place first.

I would very much like to see many new features continue to be introduced into blender. I see feature bounties accellerating this, as well as getting ideas that may not otherwise be attractive looked at. If someone with money burning a hole in their pocket wants a feature that's somehow only useful to the them, they could hire a contractor to do it, or they could offer a monitary incentive to blender coders. Blender development won't come to a stop for some obscure feature. I do not see a negitive impact on blender development.

My suggestion would be: Put together a document on how feature bounties would work. Get peoples ideas and opinions and try to work up something you feel will really work. Then bring a proposal to the blender community for vote. With something to actually read and consider, the community can then make an informed decision on wether it wants feature bounties or not.

Does this seems reasonable?
Would someone like to volunteer to organize this?
Is this overkill? :P

Posts: 442
Joined: Wed Oct 23, 2002 2:47 pm

Post by Money_YaY! »

version 2.1 is up, it is cleaner, but of course it still needs better focus.

And somebody else needs to present a feature request to get the boat a'going

Posts: 30
Joined: Tue Nov 05, 2002 7:10 am

Post by steve_t »

Consumer Directed development... sounds like one of the most sane ideas yet.
Two concepts
1. Product Concept: Let's make a good product so people will buy it. Let's build a better mousetrap and the world will beat a path to our door.
2.Marketing Concept: Let's find out the needs, wants, and desires of our customers so we can help satisfy those needs.

Is sounds like we have allot of product thinkers here. Just because coders are making features does not mean they are features that the CONSUMERS of blender want and that will add VALUE.

taking some of the power away from coders and giving it to consumers sounds like a good idea. But what happens when the spirit of the movement is lost? What happens when coders won't code for the fun and honor of it and must be paid?

MY Proposal
Make a professional Blender Group. Companys, professionals, and members pay to be involved...let's say $100 to $10000 per year. This group hires coders to work specifically for the group. Depending on how much you donated to the group you can make votes for projects that you want done. The more votes for the project the bigger payoff for the group hired coder.
All the work must be commited to official releases so everyone gains.
Not just any coder can take work from the group. A professional blender group coder would be a position of prestigue and honor and would be rotated or highly selective.
This way it would not take the foccus off of the rest of the comunitys development needs. Coders would work hard so they could apply to serve as a group coder. Companys and professionals that have money can get a little prefrance and some special treatment that they deserve.

Just my 5 cents

Posts: 29
Joined: Thu Jan 29, 2004 1:56 am
Location: sydney, australia

Post by nay »

steve_t wrote : companys and professionals that have money can get a little prefrance and some special treatment that they deserve.

i find this statement troubling

i don't disagree with pros or cons mentioned but this makes me anxious. although there is nothing wrong with the proposal, it may change things drastically if it takes off as a main drive behind development.

the reason open source works (blender and else where) is because of the success of the development model i.e. the reward structure of the gift culture etc. (see "the cathedral and the bazaar" by eric raymond for an obvious reference). although i am intrigued to see what would happen to this alteration of the open source model. i am terrified that it could have a negative effect on blender, not to doubt the integrity of the coders (i love the work they do) but this could alter their motivations, coders may opt for paid features as opposed to some requested by the poorer therefore 'less-deserving'?! members of the community, why should a coder working on features for those who can't pay not receive a reward that another coder does?

please note that i am not against financial reward for coders, but maybe an annual (or quarterly?) vote for a reward would be a better idea.

there is of course freedom for all this under the GPL and it is up to the coders, but i guess it should come down to a vote (if this issue is really pushed) as to whether or not this approach is fully sanctioned by the community.

even though a fork in the community would be terrible (if we try this and it doesn't work), i am relieved reading this discussion that at least we have the safety net of the GPL.

Posts: 0
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2004 11:44 pm

Post by Darqus »

even though blender is free (freedom) software, that doesen't mean that we can have difficult features made by mercinaries. as someone said there is room for that in the gpl as long as the coders work under the gpl license it doesn't matter to the end users how the feature was made...

i for one believe that this will attract more brainpower - and MOST IMPORTANTLY - will allow the coders that really want to work for the benefit of blender to do so full or part time!

anyone can see that

Posts: 0
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2004 11:44 pm

Post by Darqus »

Blender can be both free and commercial! just look at how quickly it evolved during the C-key days. there where new features practically every week and every month the new feautures where released for free (or so i remember).

now what i'm saying isn't that we have to go back to the way NaN dit it in the past, i'm just saying that it is possible to have it be both free and commercial.

Posts: 180
Joined: Wed Oct 16, 2002 7:27 pm
Location: Somewhere below the rivers in Holland (but not Limburg)

Post by Michel »


I, as one of the current developers, work on Blender in my free time. I choose to work on stuff that interest me, where I can learn from, help other developers and possibly users. Currently I'm busy with the build system of Blender. This is something that has absolutely no added value to the end-user. I work on this because of at least one of the afore mentioned reasons. I bet though that such a job is never on the list of 'paid jobs' :twisted:
I don't want to get paid to work on Blender - no matter what the work is. I have a normal 40-hour day job, and when I get home, I may get to work on Blender or not - depending on how I feel at that moment. I don't want to feel obligated to do something because people pay me something.
Now, don't understand me wrong, if people feel more interested in working on a feature because it could earn them some money, then by all means go for it! For example, if this would've been the case when I was a student, my opinion would've probably been a different one.

I'm very interested in seeing what comes out of this.

With regards,
You can have one of two things: Progress or Progress Reports.

Posts: 0
Joined: Thu Feb 12, 2004 11:44 pm

Post by Darqus »

well hello there michel! you find the time to work on blender at a hobbyist level and that is great! your work is greatly apreciated but i don't believe that every coder that could be of assistance has the time to do so... after all time = money.

while you don't feel comfortable contributing to blender for cash doesen't mean that it is fundamentally wrong to do so. in fact i think that it would be more of a wrong to say " NO PAID CODERS! " than to say that we could have both. both the hobbyists contributing to it and a smaller number of mercinairy made functions, implementations and the like.

just take a look at this it is realtime photon / gi calculations totally done in gpu and then take a look at blenders ui... i know it is just a proof of concept example, but that's just what it is. proof that i can be done using comodity hardware and properly made software. that kind of software takes alot of devellopment hours. i think we'll get more devellopment hours if we can attract the people that have experience in some fields that blender could benefit from.

Posts: 0
Joined: Tue Nov 25, 2003 5:27 pm
Location: Denzenberg, could walk to Hölderling-Tower

Post by bjornmose »

most of what Michel said applies for me too. I did the new UV stuff in Tuhopuu, because i want to use it. I'm quite new to blender ( not to 3d graphics ) and i'm still kind of confused how the community organizes.
There are bug-trackers, funboards, feature requests, this forum, elysiun #blenderchat, bf-committters .... sure i did forget something. It would be a full time job to read all this stuff to figure out what's realy needed.

That leads me to the point. I think the community should spend money, to
1. have full/part timers to do something like project management.
2. have some paid developers to make / keep the internals of blender clean and make some internal documentaion. That are the real "bad" jobs: working for days and noone but the other coders see there is something moving. I've seen some projects stalling on featureitis.
All that was left was a huge bunch of unmaintainable code.
I have to admit it sells.
OK i have this at my job and i get paid for, but when blender turns out to become like this, consider me gone.


Posts: 0
Joined: Mon Oct 20, 2003 7:14 am

Post by leon »

I don't think the idea of paying for features is that bad - in fact, I think that's the future of open source....

But what you would probably want to do is have an organisation where you pay for features, but half the cash (or whatever percentage) goes to the organisation itself for doing the jobs no one wants to pay for (the build systems, keeping code clean etc).

Posts: 0
Joined: Tue Feb 25, 2003 2:37 pm

Post by ideasman »

Monkeyboi wrote:So the richest get the most influence? It sounds like a very capitalistic idea to me. I thought Blender was free of that. I like the fact that Blenders coders have gotten into Blender because of their will to improve the program, not plain cash. If they were doing things for money, features probably would be implemented much worse, because you are not focusing on getting it to work perfect and well, you are focusing on money. I love Blender, and I have some ambitions on how to improve it, therefore I am slowly starting to poke at the code so I can one day start coding real stuff.

Just look at the difference between BF-Blender and NAN-Blender. Great features and improvements are coming along like crazy now! You can compare it to Linux vs Windows:

Linux: developed with no bounty - flawless, stable, flexible
Windows: developed for money - buggy, faulty (I know, I am a Windows user myself)

Something to think about

For sure, I dont compleately disagree- But its worth noting that many linux developers are employed by companies like IBM, Redhat, HP etc to develop linux

Posts: 0
Joined: Fri May 23, 2003 1:53 am

Location of bounty board?

Post by emack »

Did some sort of 'bounty board' where prizes could be offered ever go up? It would be interesting to see what the requests were . .

Post Reply