I got a note from a user yesterday who was worried that I might not be developing Scope any further 🙂 I guess that was natural since I haven’t talked about Scope in a long time and all I do is write about Blog development … but have no fear, I will get back to Scope as soon as I finish my current work on Blog.
The fact of the matter is that I mainly code for myself unless I get some push to work on a project. I had completed the basic features that I wanted from Scope and while I do get a lot of e-mails from users telling me how great Scope is and how much they like it, I also get a lot of e-mails from people who don’t even bother to say thank you but simply want this or that feature or even worse <g>, launch into a tirade because a particular feature doesn’t work.
While I understand the fact that I have a responsibility to provide working software, I’m also doing this in my spare time when I could be doing something else that I enjoy or working on a different project because the software does what *I* wanted it to do :p So what am I saying? Am I asking you to cough up some dough? Of course not!!! I have always loved the concept of having (and providing) free software but I do like to see some reciprocation …
And reciprocation is something that sadly seems to be missing more and more for free software and free efforts 🙁 I’m not saying that reciprocation is totatlly missing because I’ve had a person donate a hard disk to me when I used to work on LiteStep and Sinesolis did those graphics for Scope on his own time and then there KuhnDog and Lyon who donated space for mirror servers as well as John who’s been helping me a lot with Delphi stuff but a lot of the time people are just content to take and not give something back …
All of my software from Scope onwards has been released as CareWare. I was hoping that that would encourage people to join the GroupHug Mailing List and perhaps help others by way of simply being there to listen to somebody else’s troubles and offering advice. I even had this grand dream that so many people would join that they would even be able to discuss a problem somebody in there area had and so be able to help somebody out offline. But what do I know? Do you know how many people have joined the mailing list since Scope was released? Barely a handful – probably five at most!
I know I’m not the only person facing this issue. Chris Pirillo of LockerGnome fame issued the Libera Manifesto which was aimed at the same problem. Then there’s my friend Rootrider over at ShellFront who has been talking about the Libera Manifesto quite a bit himself – probably because he’s had to face the issue too. He wanted to organize a ShellCon so that alternate shell developers and users could get together – did anybody offer to help him organize it? Not as far as I know!
I guess I’m on a regular old rant :p And this by no means is aimed at the person who asked me whether Scope development is over or those people who send me feature requests for Scope 🙂 I love receiving feature requests because that tells me that people are using my software. I’m simply trying to explain the slowness of coding and why I’m not always working on a particular project – it’s because I just don’t feel motivated … So I work on what *I* feel like working on – it’s as simple as that 🙂