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Old 13 May 2017, 06:33   #1
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Join Date: Mar 2009
Location: New York
Posts: 552
AROS68K development methodology and bounties

Hello everyone,

I wanted to take this opportunity to separate out of the Critical components to open source thread the lively AROS-related discussion that kicked up there, in order that the thread may return to its primary topic.

As one forum member rightly pointed out, while we work to address the injustice that is the closed-source Amiga OS 3.1, there is a very worthy project called AROS that certainly deserves our attention. To my mind, this is especially true considering the Vampire team’s recent moves, which I see as a boon to awareness and development of the project. It is something that I at least would like to seize upon and assist along in any way possible.

Before the topic of bounties is directly addressed however, I want to express a personal opinion about why they have largely failed up to this point. Some would say that it is a matter of lacking interest, and maybe that is so. But on the whole I take a different view: I believe that the user experience around bounties and AROS development is appallingly bad. Just take a look. As it stands, discussion, development, and bounties are spread out across multiple domains, most of which are running early 2000s-era software. This breaks the continuity completely. For example, here is one bounty that is reasonably funded, and arguably pretty important, yet unclaimed for over five years. Perhaps this is a simple lack of interest, but I suspect UX is as much to blame, if not more so. After all, how many times a day are people checking that domain?

By contrast, here is a bounty that is directly connected with an issue that is able to be engaged very much like a forum thread. Being hosted on GitHub also means that it is accessible (though by no means automatically visible) to all of the existing users of that platform. In other words, GitHub has the potential to act as connective tissue between discussion, development, and bounties. There are also bounty platforms which integrate directly with GitHub to make this aspect even more flexible. On the whole, assuming the goal of creating an active, open community around a project – one which feels inclusive and organized (albeit in the sometimes chaotic style of an active open source project) – I believe that this is the correct way to do things.

Now, getting to the meat of it: I am willing to donate an initial $25,000 to AROS68K-related (ABIv1) bounties, if a team is willing to organize in the manner described above, on GitHub. Yes, my offer requires some initially uncomfortable changes, and perhaps a grumbling abandonment of certain intellectual investments, but I make this offer with a sincere belief that it will be better for everyone in the long run. There are no other strings attached. In fact, I turn everything past this point over to the community: I would very much appreciate it if what came out of this thread, was a lively discussion outlining what you guys see as the most important developments for AROS as a core, standalone operating system for 68K systems – past, present, and future. I will contribute to it myself, but where the bounty money goes will have to be directed by collective good sense – and I sincerely hope you have it. This is not the place to request an MP3 player or a browser, for example. At least not yet.

Please try to be productive, helpful, and on-topic. Anti-AROS sentiment is not welcome in this thread at all; please start another one if you want to rant in that direction.

Power to the people? Let's see how it goes.

Last edited by wXR; 14 May 2017 at 06:30.
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