When I set out to convert all my software over to be Open Source — and fully fund development with contributions from the community — I knew there was a strong chance it wouldn’t work out [heck, nobody else has pulled it off]. There was a very real possibility that it wouldn’t even get off the ground.
But get off the ground, it did. We all pulled together and made it happen. We hit our fundraising goals for the first month in just 8 days. Which gave me a great deal of hope for the coming months.
Unfortunately things didn’t quite work out.
Total recurring donations are down to just a small fraction of the initial goals — and way below what is needed to sustain development.
I attempted to make a few modifications to funding model to no avail. It’s just simply not working. [Over the next few weeks I'll spend some time taking a look at how it went, day-by-day -- then I'll publish what I figure out - in one single post - so we can all learn from it.]
So… what now?
Now I need to return my lively-hood to a model that I know can support me and my family [and had done so for years previously]. So new versions of some of my software will be returning to a closed source license (in this case the GLL).
The previous version of all of these will, obviously, remain under the GPL. The Lunduke SDK and Radical Comic Designer will, as well, be staying GPL.
I will continue working on a “Non-Me” Open Source project for one week each month [right now this is Inkscape].
Those who wish to contribute to any of that work my continue to do so.
Everyone who has contributed will get an email from me, tomorrow, that gives them full licenses for all of the new versions of the Closed Source software listed above.
Over the next few hours, there will be a few small changes to Lunduke.com to reflect the new details — along with the first beta release of Illumination Software Creator 5.0.
This has been an exciting experiment. I’m hoping we can learn from it to better fund similar projects in the future. And I’m happy that some new Open Source software has resulted from it.
For me… it’s time to play it safe, business-wise, and just focus on making awesome software for a while — and selling it the good old fashioned way.