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Re: [ide-dev] Why we dropped Eclipse in favour of IntelliJ | Java Code Geeks

I think it's a pretty novel approach (???) to hit up users for support rather than companies that have a) a direct profit from related products services or b) some kind of weird vested interest like Google has in being the default search provider for Mozilla. But that's not to say it's impossible!

So, I think folks are on the right track with the idea that what is lacking is as much willingness of large corporate users, but actually a mechanism for them to do so and most critically to account for actual improvements in quality, features, etc.. that's what these guys are willing to pay for. They're not going to pay for bodies. At the end of the day, someone has to tell their boss why they dropped a bunch of dollars on some devs, and what they got out of it that adds direct value to their users.  And yes, they will drive this from what their users are telling them they need -- and while that internal agenda may skew things a bit it also has a way of focussing things to the essentials. Note that (I'm speaking from experience here..:D ) they aren't going to be as happy about paying for various internals that will eventually end up supporting x,y and z. They want actual user surfaced features. So don't come knocking w/ a proposal for a CLI or better resource management support. Just sayin'..

(BTW, it's not fair to single out Ericsson here, there are plenty of other large user bases to hit up.. :))

I'm not convinced the development should happen at Eclipse Foundation. I'm not sure what the track record of not-for-profit organizations is on actually directly developing software outside of academic projects. Note that some sort of arrangement like the Mozilla Corporate taxable entity would probably have to be established. But the legalities are probably getting a bit off-topic. Note that the Foundation (having to be very careful about conflict of interest issues) could simply act as a sort of clearing house or matchmaker. My guess is that's something that is difficult for the foundation to do right now because it ends up in a situation where they could be seen to be playing favourites or worse being on the hook over something they have little control over.


On 2013-09-20, at 12:38 PM, Pascal Rapicault <pascal@xxxxxxxxxxxxx> wrote:

> When it comes to OSS, very few large companies have the maturity level
> that Ericsson or others have, and in those not-too-OSS-savvy companies it 
> is easier for a manager to ask for a finite budget to purchase tools (and
> remember also that they will get a significant discount), than having the
> discussion to hire in house developers or consultant to fix or build the
> tool they need.
> On top of that when you buy a tool, you get immediate result, and if
> something goes wrong you get professional support and don’t have to wait
> for a committer to answer (because remember that nobody will ever be
> committer on all projects so even if I’m committer on project A I will
> still use project B).
> Over the years of being involved with commercial software tools, I have
> always been surprised by the amount of people who were ready to spend
> money even on a free tool, either to buy “piece of mind”, to ensure
> continued improvement of the tool, fix some minor glitches, etc. In fact
> some companies are even be ready to pay for new features to be developed
> in the OSS.
> Unfortunately at Eclipse we don’t offer that in any form or others.
> Earlier we were talking about how to fund developers at the foundation? I
> think that if the foundation was willing to sell Eclipse support, then
> this would most likely pay for a couple developers and support ppl, etc.
> that could contribute to improve the status quo and hear first-hand of the
> users problem (and those that we get in bugs are not representative of the
> mass of developers behind corporate doors, for example how many
> ericsson.com email addresses do we have in BZ when ericsson internally has
> over 10,000 eclipse users).
> I realize that there is chicken-and-egg problem with that approach, but
> imo it worth being tried.
> On Fri, September 20, 2013 14:42, Konstantin Komissarchik wrote:
>> John,
>> It has been a while since I have been on The Board, but if the current
>> objections are all financial, then that illustrates a change in thinking
>> and
>> is a good sign.
>> Part of the reason that fundraising has been difficult is that it is
>> difficult to show value of EF membership. This can be remedied if EF has
>> developers on payroll. Not only would membership give you a vote in
>> setting
>> the direction for these developers, but there could be other benefits. Say
>> annual points that the member can spend to ensure that specific problems
>> affecting them are addressed.
>> We could also be doing more to explore fundraising from end users. How
>> about
>> "sponsor a bug" that's integrated directly into bugzilla? The funds are
>> held
>> in an escrow until the solution is delivered. EF or ecosystem developers
>> can
>> fix the issue. If an ecosystem developer fixes the issue, EF takes a cut
>> for
>> facilitating the transaction.
>> - Konstantin
>> From: ide-dev-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxx [mailto:ide-dev-bounces@xxxxxxxxxxx] On
>> Behalf Of John Arthorne
>> Sent: Friday, September 20, 2013 11:06 AM
>> To: Discussions about the IDE
>> Subject: Re: [ide-dev] Why we dropped Eclipse in favour of IntelliJ | Java
>> Code Geeks
>>> From: "Konstantin Komissarchik" <konstantin.komissarchik@xxxxxxxxxx>
>>> We already have a system for organizing interested parties around
>>> Eclipse,
>>> pooling resources, etc., but we refuse to let The Foundation hire actual
>>> developers, believing (incorrectly) that a diverse ecosystem is always
>>> better.
>> This has been discussed in depth within the Eclipse Board, and at least in
>> the last two years I have not heard that argument used against the idea.
>> There is a brief summary of one such instance at [1]. The main sticking
>> point on this idea has been finding a stable source of funding for it.
>> Developers are expensive, and the Foundation in its current form doesn't
>> have the long term financial backing to fund development. I would love to
>> hear anyone's ideas on this (either in public or private), and as a
>> committer representative on the Board I would be happy to bring ideas
>> forward there.
>> John
>> [1]
>> <http://www.eclipse.org/org/foundation/boardminutes/2012_10_22_Minutes.php>
>> http://www.eclipse.org/org/foundation/boardminutes/2012_10_22_Minutes.php
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