This is my personal blog. The views expressed on these pages are mine alone and not those of my employer.

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

The Problem With Code Bounty Sites

There are some really cool "bounty" type web sites where folks can post bounties to solve open source problems or do new development. Unfortunately, they always have pitifully low amounts of money they offer, preventing real developers from being interested.

This post in particular completely shows the problem:

"I need someone to program me a new OS (Operasting System) that looks different than Ms Windows XP etc. but has the same style....

These are some important points :

It should have ALL THE FEATURES that Windows Xp Professional has.
ALL the files that run on Windows XP ust also run on the BlueOrb OS.
It must have a very user-friendly interface (like MS WINDOWS XP)"

Oh, and how much will he pay to have this done:

"Budget: $ 1000-3000"

LOL! Talk about pitiful amounts of money. And: "Note that I only accept quality work and do not want any quickly done BS."

I see this constantly in my consulting practice -- people forget the square of development: features, quality, schedule, cost -- choose 3. It's exceedingly hard to have all 4 at the same time, perhaps impossible. If you choose lots of features, your schedule will suffer, your cost will go up, and your quality won't be as good. If you restrict features, this means you will have more time for quality.

Devils in Space

This must be the craziest thread I've ever seen; it's a discussion between a very conservative Christian who believes that going into space is wrong and the mark of the devil, and the actual developers who are building things like space elevators and cheap access to orbit. Strangely enough, it actually restores my faith in humanity -- both sides actually speak with respect to each other, even though they come from extremely different worlds and paradigms. I'm a huge buff, so I'm on the side of cheap access to space and humanity up in the heavens, but it's a strange, interesting debate.

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