Fri, 11 May 2001 14:33:47 -0700
Paul McDonough <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote...
>1. The StableSqueak effort and the main SqC thrust can reinforce one
>another, to great mutual benefit. Think not of a fork, but rather of
>interweaving strands, like those pop-drawings of DNA.
I agree, and will save the rest for another message.
>2. Without the pink plane, the blue plane soars off into a never-never
>land which has little or no impact on the world outside its own creative
>minds. Without the blue plane, the pink plane becomes a dreadful,
>lifeless, stale, hopeless place of dark, smelly alleys and tumbleweed,
>and nowhere to work but Microsoft.
I agree strongly about this. It seems to me that we have a number of=
blue-plane interests represented on the Squeak List, and what is really=
needed from SqF (or someone else if SqF decides to abdicate) are...
A conventional and reliable process for system releases
A conventional and reliable clearinghouse for images and VMs
A source for documentation and other support
This could sound like SqC wants SqF to do all the hard work, and keep all=
the blue plane fun to itself. This is not at all what I mean. Our work=
will always be out in the open, and anyone else can go blue whenever they=
want to. It's true that there is hard work to be done and that I/we can't=
do it all ourselves. Remember that he SqF movement began from expressed=
needs for better inclusion of *everyone's* work, and also the need for=
standards, documentation, scheduled releases, etc.
I see the SqF as a symbolic flag around which we can all rally and declare=
the things that are needed for this community to truly thrive. I believe=
the items listed above are needed, and are not strengths of SqC, so whether=
you consider them pink or purple, we still need to come up with a way to=
get them done.
>3. Pardon while I yell out the name of the 400-lb. gorilla at the
>table. "Money". Imho, this Squeak Foundation is rolling along pretty
>well, actually - if you've ever tried to put togethor the neighborhood
>school-bake-sale or something, you know it's not easy to get a volunteer
>effort moving quickly. Cees et al. are doing a lot, and being quite
>effective. But to do a job on the scale that's being talked about,
>there must be money, or a critical mass of people with sufficient
>leisure to devote essentially full time.
>One way to fund a foundation is through corporate sponsorship. Squeak
>has plenty of allure, but few delivered "success stories" - and without
>the success stories, corporate donors become more difficult to convince.
> So that's where StSq comes back in. The idea behind that effort, as I
>understand it, was not to supercede Squeak itself, but to provide a
>steady, backward-compatible, solid platform to allow one to take
>advantage of Squeak's best developed features, but without having to
>know all that much about its internal workings, and without the highly
>interwoven nature that makes such things as headless apps pretty tricky
>to put together. That's what led me to volunteer to play with the
>pre-release image (good schtuff!, albeit still a ways to go).
>It is my belief that once such a platform becomes available, the sheer
>brute force of economic opportunity is going to push *someone* to use
>Squeak to make a buck. That someone, if s/he has the least grain of
>sense at all, will recognize the value of contributing to efforts such
>as StSq, SqF, and Squeak Central, in their preferred currency, be it
>cash, time, or code. In that slice of the business community which has
>thought about how to build open-source based businesses, Rule Number Two
>is taken as a given: always give back to the community! And then the
>community becomes stronger, there's more time/effort available for
>Squeaking along all planes, more Squeak jobs out there, and it all loops
>back. That's my hope, anyway, as I really want to see Squeak go where
>we all know it can go.
Money *is* important.
It's fuel for the ship and it's also a concrete acknowledgement that we=
have, as they say in the biz, a "going concern". I think there are several=
reasons for people to want to ante up for a free product.
Consider sandwiches: Are you willing to pay more for one made today than=
one made yesterday? Stock quotes have been out in the open for years, but=
people who care are still happy to pay for the latest. Get it? If you are=
a Squeak developer, you are certainly going to want to track the=
forthocming release, have input to it, and be able to test your product=
through alpha beta and gamma, so you're ready when the release is ready.
Also, take a look at all the other programming environments. The real money=
and the real action is not in the programming environments (duh: ours is=
free), but in consulting and support. Paying clients get consulting and=
support. Maybe spotty at first, but at least some one-on-one channel where=
questions get answered promptly, and where people can recommend various=
sources of documentation, and other experts to contact. I can imagaine a=
sort of "open consultants bureau" growing out of this facet of SqF.
I think that if SqF could state its...
=2E.. that we could get half a dozen companies to pony up $5000 each,=
another half dozen benefactors to chip in $1000 each, and maybe 100 opther=
good Squeakers and true to come forth with $50 each. It won't build us a=
corporate headquarters on Maui, but it would sure feel like we had a going =