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Crowdfunding development

asked 2014-01-02 15:22:01 +0300

aegis gravatar image

updated 2015-02-09 04:36:02 +0300

This is a follow on idea to https://together.jolla.com/question/5609/harbour-donate-function/ and https://together.jolla.com/question/7364/crowdfunding-licensed-software-for-jolla-sailfishos/ which deal with donating to existing developers for existing apps and crowdfunding licenced software. I think this should be more general.

Often, development does not get started on applications or features unless there is some commercial support before development begins. Traditionally, companies such as Nokia would fund the development of some applications that were important to get a platform started. I don't expect that Jolla would be able to fund development of 3rd party apps and features themselves; at least not at the extent the big companies do.

Many developers in the Jolla sphere come from open source backgrounds where we just develop because it scratches our own itches and we have a tradition of giving away code for the greater good. This is great but even the most ardent of open source developer still has to eat, pay the bills, pay for new Jolla phones. Without funding, often the larger projects that would consume a lot of time do not get off the starting block.

My proposal is that we add the ability to financially pledge support to any developer who wishes to propose and take on a development project which is presented at together.jolla.com. Essentially, using together as a Kickstarter for Sailfish projects. I hope we can match up ideas with developers and funding.

As mentioned in one of the comments in https://together.jolla.com/question/5609/harbour-donate-function/ this may be legally impossible in Finland so needs further investigation as to whether together.jolla.com is the right place for this.


Update: This hasn't happened, it's over a year since I suggested it and I'd like to suggest we do it now through Bountysource.com

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I think it'd be great to have a platform, where people could place their feature requests and where donations would be gathered for desired features/solutions. Developers/projects who are the first to bring a valuable solution to the specific request would get the donated money.

jcoder ( 2014-01-05 14:37:03 +0300 )edit

Do you remember any examples of successful software crowdfunding for mobile phones? Good examples could help initiate the idea. Ouya had a crowdfunding program for game-developers, but I don't know how successful it was.

Nilux ( 2014-01-29 14:06:12 +0300 )edit

Maybe you could convert this question to a wiki and start a list of applications known to be in development for Sailfish or known to be seeking for funding. At least there was this BitPurse on bitstarter which nobody knew about. Such a list could be helpful. Call it "Help funding these applications for sailfish" or similar.

Nilux ( 2014-04-02 12:47:50 +0300 )edit

You know, this is an excellent idea! E.g. Coderus is now also raising money on Indiegogo. But it would be better to be able to donate to specific projects. It could be a great way to quickly improve the UX one core app at the time: browser, mail-app, Maps app etc.

bilgy_no1 ( 2014-12-07 15:43:26 +0300 )edit

Great idea, that is still only lacking any response from.Jolla. I wonder why the #SailfishOS provider is so slow to comment or support these set of ideas that would actually improve the native app provision, enhance the 3rd-party dev commitment and lighten the burden for Jolla to keep most pkatform/app design, development and impl. in-house. Maybe when the second device is released something happens in this regard, too.

foss4ever ( 2015-02-09 22:59:40 +0300 )edit

10 Answers

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answered 2014-10-10 15:50:41 +0300

meneer gravatar image

ownCloud is using the bountysource platform for funding development of functionality. I can imagine using this method for funding SailfishOS developments: https://www.bountysource.com/teams/owncloud

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That looks like a very good solution!

chinauser ( 2014-10-10 17:33:11 +0300 )edit

I like that. There is a feature request in on Askbot for bounties though not the way bountysource works. http://askbot.org/en/question/2965/does-askbot-support-bounty/

So it looks like bountysource or something similar is required.

aegis ( 2014-12-07 11:33:39 +0300 )edit

https://www.bountysource.com/teams/elementary/bounties Elementary OS is using bountysource excactly how the idea is here.

taaem ( 2014-12-07 12:44:22 +0300 )edit

answered 2014-10-10 11:33:13 +0300

chinauser gravatar image

This is a brilliant idea. We could use existing entities such as kickstarter for this crowd-funding activity. But we definitely need the Jolla seal of approval on this solution.

As per my example, I'm ready to pay 50 Euros to get LinkedIn integration into Sailfish OS: https://together.jolla.com/question/20400/adding-linkedin-to-accounts/

Using this method, we can start a new way to link developers with users. We can show the power of community and make it go completely opposite to the traditional app stores where you have providers delivering to clients. I'm here for the community and I want to contribute one way or another (money is one).

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Yes, this needs to be started and somehow controlled by Jolla and integrated with the Jolla store somehow.

Unlike app development.

This would truly make Jolla a Movement.

ragzy ( 2014-11-19 20:25:57 +0300 )edit

LinkedIn-app native app/client request here: https://together.jolla.com/question/25962/native-linkedin-client-needed/

foss4ever ( 2015-02-09 22:47:25 +0300 )edit

answered 2014-12-06 20:46:15 +0300

jcoder gravatar image

updated 2015-02-09 05:40:15 +0300

As meneer already said: We all should back up NielDK ( campaign: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/jolla-tablet-developer-startup ), coderus ( campaign: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/sailfishos-individual-developer-support ) and CepiPerez ( https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/supporting-a-sailfishos-individual-developer ).

I think- though I don't use their apps myself- esp. coderus and NielDK did so much for the SailfishOS ecosystem- we could not contribute enough to honor their work. Their work gets new users to the platform and more users may attract other developers who develop those apps I really desire. CepiPerez made some great apps on N9 and N900. It would be great to help him to get his Jolla phone/tablet and the needed equipment to do the same on SailfishOS.

Addressed to NielDK, coderus and CepiPerez (and all the other gifted developers reading this): Have you ever thought of starting a campaign to gather money for a concrete project?

I mean- if you sort the TJC-questions/requests by votes you find some features that are missing but highly desired by SailfishOS users. One of the missing most appreciated features for example is https://together.jolla.com/question/415/sip-voip-native-integration/ with 414 votes.

A perk of 2000,-- EUR to hire coderus (or any other developer) for an individual project is a very high effort for an individual person. So probably no one will do it. And even if one would- it's probably much to less for the time the developer has to spend.

But if everyone who showed his appreciation by voting up would only contribute 10,-- EUR (esp. for a native SIP/VoIP integration I'd contribute much more) you'd gather 4140,-- EUR for this project.

Update: by @anandrkris - In the last one week, I raised 3 queries / requests in Sailfish OS and all three of them resulted in patches / application development by @coderus.

  1. https://together.jolla.com/question/65722/easy-switching-front-back-camera-mode/ >> https://openrepos.net/content/coderus/patch-move-camera-device-settings-front
  2. https://together.jolla.com/question/4959/add-more-search-engines-to-the-web-browser/ >> https://openrepos.net/content/coderus/search-engines-sailfish-browser
  3. https://together.jolla.com/question/80413/notification-in-jolla-for-remote-connections-invoked >> https://openrepos.net/content/coderus/ssh-access-confirmation
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From what I can gather SIP support mostly just requires a UI which is back in Jolla's control. Some of the requested features or applications will require cooperation and development with Jolla. Do we pay Jolla to do this? Will Jolla let their employees spend their time on crowd sourced projects instead of their internal projects?

aegis ( 2014-12-07 11:44:02 +0300 )edit

SIP-support was just an example for a feature that is important to me. Many other features/apps are importand for many others (maybe Telegram and/or Threema client, offboard car navigation (maybe for maeps), whatever)

A experienced developer (or group) could choose any other feature/project which he thinks is important enough to the community to pay for and which he thinks is realizeable.

But let me eplain my view about SIP support: If we expect a perfect implementation, this would require support by Jolla. We'd need integration in the accounts UI, we'd need integration in the phone UI.

But why not be satisfied with the sparrow in our hand? In my reading of the above mentioned question there are so many things that already work (from CLI). All the required CLI tools are already availaible. You can already accept incoming calls and place outbound calls.

I'm only a layman in the concepts of the Jolla phone. So my interpretation could be absolutely wrong: In my pov there are mainly three challenges which could be solved in three different projects. Therefore the capital to solve them could be gathered in different campaigns, too.

1st is a standalone UI with enables the user to accept inbound SIP calls and place outpound SIP calls via telepathy. Since this already works on the command line I think this shuld be doable?!? This UI App should have it's own dialpad for manual dialing as well as access to contacts. While there is no support for SIP-Accounts by Jolla-Accounts (UI) the app could manage SIP-Accounts in it's own localStorage database.

2nd is missing audio routing (sound only on phones speaker). This affects aliendalvik (and other apps/features) as well as SIP features. A developer who'd like to solve this could expect contributions from others than SIP-interested users, too. To me this issue seems more related to the Mer-part than to Jolla. (continued)->

jcoder ( 2014-12-07 15:57:42 +0300 )edit

3rd is the packaging of all the parts that already exist and the parts that have to be worked out to one user-friendly package

I don't say that's a perfect solution. And I don't think it's an easy job. But (thinking f.e. of meap or Mitakuluu) there are so many brilliant developers around here who work on challenges that (in my pov) seem much harder to solve. So (in my laymans view) I don't believe that it's impossible- even without being directly supported by Jolla.

jcoder ( 2014-12-07 15:58:21 +0300 )edit

@aegis: A more basical answer to your question: "Would I contribute to a campaign to gather money to prioritize features (even if they may seem as fundamental features for a smartphone OS to me)?"

My first thought was: If any company (e.g. Samsung, HTC or Google) would ask me so it would have a very specific smell. I mean it's their competitiveness I would pay for.

My second thought: I knew what I bought when I bought my Jolla. And I knew that there were/are several things that Jolla should and will rather focus on than on the features I demand. So implementing the features I desire would cost Jolla developers additional time. This time needs money the company doesn't have (at least not for the features I desire).

So yes: I'd appreciate if Jolla would gather more money for additional developers by initiating campaigns to prioritize features that their users demand. If it's a feature demanded by me I'd contribute to Jolla as well as I'd contribute to a project by an independend developer.

jcoder ( 2014-12-07 16:17:49 +0300 )edit

@jcoder Ideally, Jolla would have enough resources that we don't have to crowd fund but they obviously don't. Crowd funding extra development resources actually at Jolla would work provided the development resources really are devoted to the features asked for and weren't going to be developed in due course.

External developers would presumably get paid when milestones are met or features delivered rather than prior to the work. Hopefully somebody has experience of these bounty based systems and can advise.

aegis ( 2014-12-09 15:52:45 +0300 )edit

answered 2014-11-19 20:12:53 +0300

meneer gravatar image

We should all back @Nieldk in his efforts: https://www.indiegogo.com/projects/jolla-tablet-developer-startup - He deserves some support!

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Thanks! I hope it can be proven to make a difference.

Nieldk ( 2014-11-19 20:26:29 +0300 )edit

answered 2014-11-19 22:26:07 +0300

Toxip gravatar image

This is a great idea! I think this could be implemented straight in the Jolla store. There could be a new section for apps that would want to enter the store but need funding or are unsure whether they'd gather enough interest. People could thumbs up if they like the idea or donate to the app developers kind of like paying for it in advance.

People could also request or suggest apps in a similar fashion to show that there's a demand for a certain type of app. To avoid any confusion this would naturally not allow any donations until someone or some company has decided to take the task and make the app.

Finally we could show our demand for ther big name apps like Whatsapp, Facebook!

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answered 2014-10-10 12:16:01 +0300

virgi26 gravatar image

what do you think about donating crypto currencies? bitcoin, NXT?

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answered 2014-11-19 20:22:39 +0300

ragzy gravatar image

Very interesting.

Imagine a platform with free apps, but developed (ad payed for) in a crowdfunding fashion.


Well, the apps developed and available would be the ones that the users actually felt a need for. Less time would have to be waisted on bad ideas and the store would not be full of "useless" apps.

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answered 2014-12-07 08:41:41 +0300

shmerl gravatar image

I'd crowdfund opening the UI of Sailfish.

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answered 2014-12-07 13:03:44 +0300

rgp gravatar image

How about a perk on the Tablet Indiegogo campaign where people can provide funds that can go to a pool that could either a) pay for x number of completely free devices for developers or b) allow a discount for more developer devices?

Perhaps Jolla could provide free shipping and the base starting price of €189, then dependent upon how many devices are requested and how much is raised, the decision of how to spread the fund could be made.

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answered 2017-11-22 21:56:39 +0300

Loenneberga gravatar image

I like the idea of crowdfunding for native apps, but doesn't that work the other way round, i.e. devs collecting money for their projects? I'd be interested in a really good native sailfish app and could imagine to pay fot the development: I'd be especially interested in a camera app (with manual focus lock for photos and video etc.) like Filmic, a maps app, a messenger app like Threema or Signal, an app for music streaming like Tidal. Nothing seems to happen. Why is that?

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There is a lot happening on the mapping front - see OSM Scout Server, modRana & PoorMaps as an example.

MartinK ( 2017-11-23 19:11:41 +0300 )edit

Thanks, I'm new here, a Sailfish X User since last weekend. I heard about Poormaps, but have no clue what the others are nor where to find them.

Loenneberga ( 2017-11-23 23:12:54 +0300 )edit

I'm starting to work on (unofficial) native Tidal app :-)

kuba77 ( 2017-12-27 14:08:45 +0300 )edit
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Asked: 2014-01-02 15:22:01 +0300

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Last updated: Nov 22 '17