Borat
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Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Sun Jul 22, 2012 1:38 pm

Maybe they already are. If not then shouldn't they be?

At the moment the rpi doesn't seem to be functioning too well. Web browsing is hopeless, and omxplayer stops without playing the whole file.

Maybe some resources should be allocated to people working on the operating system, compiling Chromium and working on accelerated Xorg. Just a thought! Again, I have no idea ho the foundation's money is being spent.

jamesh
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Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Sun Jul 22, 2012 1:50 pm

Browsing has improved a lot in Raspbian, it's certainly not hopeless, but tbh, the purpose of the device is not web browsing, it's teaching programming.

However, people are already working on those things you mention anyway. And fortunately people working in this area are willing to work without payment. And if the Foundation had to pay, contract software engineers is not cheap. You are talking £50k minimum for 6 months work. There are things better suited to the Foundations aims to spend money on.
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Jim JKla
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Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Sun Jul 22, 2012 2:25 pm

That would be a no :D
Noob is not derogatory the noob is just the lower end of the noob--geek spectrum being a noob is just your first step towards being an uber-geek ;)

If you find a solution please post it in the wiki the forum dies too quick

Borat
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Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Sun Jul 22, 2012 2:55 pm

You are talking £50k minimum for 6 months work. There are things better suited to the Foundations aims to spend money on.
Haha, so deliberately narrow-minded. Was that troll?

jamesh
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Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Sun Jul 22, 2012 3:12 pm

Borat wrote:
You are talking £50k minimum for 6 months work. There are things better suited to the Foundations aims to spend money on.
Haha, so deliberately narrow-minded. Was that troll?
Please explain you reasoning why that is narrow minded. And don't accuse people of trolling, that's my job!
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mpthompson
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Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Sun Jul 22, 2012 6:28 pm

Borat wrote:Maybe some resources should be allocated to people working on the operating system, compiling Chromium and working on accelerated Xorg. Just a thought! Again, I have no idea ho the foundation's money is being spent.
This type of feedback would probably best be directed towards one of the more general Raspberry Pi forums where Eben and others leaders in the Foundation would most likely see it. It's not really appropriate for the Raspbian forum.

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Vindicator
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Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Sun Jul 22, 2012 7:20 pm

I would suggest that you remember that the Raspberrypi was never meant to be a general computing device for the masses and in as much the development for the applications is being accomplished as open sourced.
If you wish to make a profitable venture of making software for the Raspi there is nothing stopping you from doing so.
If someone is paying for software development then there would also have to be a like in kind transfer of money from the users to acquire the software.
Some of the developers probably have web pages and possibly donate buttons, and you could pay them this way for their efforts.
If you are more worried about ,spelling, punctuation or grammar you have probably already missed the point so please just move on.

lb
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Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Sun Jul 22, 2012 7:33 pm

I guess what would make sense are bounties for some of the much-wanted tasks (Xorg drivers, USB fixes, etc.), so that people working on those would get some sort of compensation, but not necessarily as much as an engineer's salary.

@Vindicator
I think you are misunderstanding the problem. The current Raspberry Pi software stack has quite a few issues, and the foundation is more or less relying on the community to get them fixed. It would be more than appropriate to sponsor work on these issues with a little bit of money. It might also speed up development.

kadamski
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Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:02 am

Remember that RPF is a charity and I believe it doesn't make much profit on RaspberryPi so I don't think they have enough resources to pay developers.

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Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Mon Jul 23, 2012 7:48 am

I wouldn't mind if the originators of R Pi were paid. They continue to put a lot of time into the foundation. However, I don't think that the open source developers should be paid. When I have more time after my current internship, I would be glad to volunteer my meager efforts. This is a great "learning / eductional" project directed at young students. We should all pitch in in the spirit of the originators.

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hippy
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Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Mon Jul 23, 2012 9:25 am

kadamski wrote:Remember that RPF is a charity and I believe it doesn't make much profit on RaspberryPi so I don't think they have enough resources to pay developers.
If a million R-Pi are sold with just $1 profit per board that's $1 million which is no small sum. It could be less but, from earlier discussions that manufacturing costs if done in the UK would wipe out most of the profit, it could be more.

Only the Foundation and Licensee manufacturers can tell us what profit per board they do make, and it's for them to decide how that profit should be re-invested. It seems though that there should be some profit which could be used to finance some developments or issue resolution if not all.

Some would say this is an inherent flaw in the low-cost retail price and zero-profit model of device manufacture; why most commercial ventures will not or cannot drastically reduce their product prices as a result of the R-Pi pricing as some have hoped. "You'll have to wait until someone has the inclination to look at things in their own time and we don't know when that will be" may be acceptable for a "development board", but it's not so suitable for an off-the-shelf commercial product where customers expect things to work, to be fit for purpose, and be quickly fixed if they don't or it isn't.

Those who wonder why other commercial products are 'so expensive' when the R-Pi is so cheap need to understand how that low cost was achieved and the consequences of that. While there is pure profit in commercial ventures one has to make a profit to pay for those things considered essential to that venture.

holmez
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Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Fri Jul 27, 2012 9:13 am

Perhaps it doesn't matter. One of the best things you can do to get ahead in life is to give your time to something. The big names (Eben, Liz, Jim et al) may not make their millions directly from the pi, but are sure to make far more indirectly.

HB
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Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Fri Jul 27, 2012 9:43 am

hippy wrote:...but it's not so suitable for an off-the-shelf commercial product where customers expect things to work, to be fit for purpose, and be quickly fixed if they don't or it isn't.
Something to keep in mind here is what the intended and advertised purpose is. It's not "cheap media centre", though it's a happy side-effect of its design that this is possible, if not entirely polished yet. It's not "cheap computer with performance comparable to your i7 desktop in all areas" either, though it can be used for a fair variety of general computing tasks, again even if a lot of that could currently use a bit more work. It's a platform for kids to learn to program on, and it's already doing this admirably.

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Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Fri Jul 27, 2012 10:21 am

HB wrote:Something to keep in mind here is what the intended and advertised purpose is.
"It’s a capable little PC which can be used for many of the things that your desktop PC does, like spreadsheets, word-processing and games".

The motivating rationale for the R-Pi is to further the teaching of computer science and the Foundation "want to see it being used by kids all over the world to learn programming", but let's not simply dismiss any issues that may arise by pretending its intent is so narrow that those aren't really problems at all.

I don't mind that the R-Pi has limitations through its design but I expect it to ultimately meet the capabilities that are implied in what it is or claims to be. I don't really mind that some things may not currently work, or not work as well as they could be expected to, because it is a "Development Board" - though I feel that is rather less well advertised than I feel it should be, and I'm somewhat concerned that so many "Development Boards" rather than "Finished Product" are being delivered to people who may not fully understand what they are actually buying.

Though the current board is probably 'good enough' for many people and uses, what I do care about is moving it from "development" to "finished" status, resolving the issues that will predictably arise in any development product. As noted, with OSH and OSS there can be issues in getting things resolved, or in a timely fashion, as that often relies on goodwill and interest from volunteers. Funding developments can overcome those difficulties and I agree with the OP that considering doing that may be appropriate in some cases.

robwriter
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Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Fri Jul 27, 2012 11:31 am

Whilst I don't agree with the poster, I don't think the Pi should just be a teaching aid - we want kids to use it at home because they want to, not just at school where they have to. And it's only going to get there if its versatile and fast enough not to annoy.

One idea I did have, was that the Foundation could have added £1 on to the cost of all non-educational Pi's sold. I don't think anyone would have cared about the £1, but this could have funded a developer to work on the things the Pi really needs, like X drivers or fixes for the USB issues.

chadtrh
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Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Fri Jul 27, 2012 3:16 pm

I must be missing something here. If I am approaching this wrong just ignore my whole post. And also this isn't posted directly at the OP here, just in general to the thread. I apologize in advance for the rant.

<rant>

The Raspberry Pi is a hardware platform based on the Broadcomm SOC. It's awesome that they got all of this on a small form factor with some options that make this available to a wider audience (outside of classroom programming environments).

The (majority of the) software that runs on the RPi is open-source and publicly developed from someone who does it as a hobby. Each program you install on this hardware is developed by a separate group of maintainers spread throughout the world. Having a problem with Chromium? Visit their site (http://www.chromium.org/Home) and submit a bug report. If omxplayer is having a problem try to reach the developers with a bug report (https://github.com/huceke/omxplayer/issues). Wish program XYZ could be installed on the RPi? Go to their site and ask for ARM support. Think that vim is the greatest thing since sliced bread (which it is btw), go to the vim site and click the donate button.

There are exceptions to this rule though, companies like Red Hat and Google have full time developers on staff to support freely available open source software. However I would be willing to go out on a limb and say that most companies don't have that. When my RHEL box at work decides it doesn't want to launch Firefox anymore I don't go to my boss and say that we need to hire a Firefox developer to fix my issue.

One of the really great things about this as well is it is getting a lot of people that couldn't spell Linux to install it at home and learn new things. The FOSS (Free and Open Source Software http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Free_and_o ... e_software) community will definitely grow due to this and that's just awesome. However it brings with it people that are new to that arena and aren't used to products not developed solely within one corporation. This is a dramatic change in mindset.

If the RPi has an issue caused by hardware it would be within their realm to try to get it fixed (or to rally the open source community to help them do it). With any new uses to hardware there are going to be growing pains, but the rapid development cycle most of this software is going through will help ease this pain a lot.

I haven't really used the RPi for it's intended purpose either (XBMC is awesome), but if there was a problem with the core functionality I am sure they would pitch in their own man hours to resolve it. I am positive that the RPi guys did do a lot of work to get software ported over and compiled for the RPi, but to blame them for software ABC not working is a bit of a stretch.

</rant>

I will try to avoid future rants

Max

Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Fri Jul 27, 2012 6:10 pm

Perhaps get some college students on the job, who are willing to work for a fraction of the price of a normal software contractor?


I disagree with the type of economics that sees "employees" as a cost.
They help you earn more instead.
May not be an issue at the moment, while sales are still high, but something to keep in mind in the long term for when the hype is over and/or competing products arrive.

holmez
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Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Sun Jul 29, 2012 12:57 pm

Max wrote:Perhaps get some college students on the job, who are willing to work for a fraction of the price of a normal software contractor?


I disagree with the type of economics that sees "employees" as a cost.
They help you earn more instead.
May not be an issue at the moment, while sales are still high, but something to keep in mind in the long term for when the hype is over and/or competing products arrive.
I think this is one of those rare cases where there is no such thing as a "competing product". Any product which is launched to "compete with" the RPi, will actually have the effect of helping the foundation towards their aims of inspiring the next generation of engineers (be it software, hardware, electronics, etc). It doesn't matter whether it was the RPi that inspired them, or some alternative product with a similar aim.

This product has already recaptured my interest in programming and electronics (via the GPIO ports), and has also awakened me to some of the alternatives which exist (such as the Arduino).

Perhaps one additional option is to start getting hard copies of the magpi into schools along with the RPi's.

As to getting college students on the job - perhaps we don't need to pay to get them on the job, perhaps RPi based dissertation projects could be the answer.

Max

Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Sun Jul 29, 2012 1:41 pm

holmez wrote: I think this is one of those rare cases where there is no such thing as a "competing product". Any product which is launched to "compete with" the RPi, will actually have the effect of helping the foundation towards their aims of inspiring the next generation of engineers (be it software, hardware, electronics, etc). It doesn't matter whether it was the RPi that inspired them, or some alternative product with a similar aim.
That's one way to look at it.
But as a current Pi owner I might be less happy with such a scenario, because then new software is going to be optimized for competitor X instead of the Pi.

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Montala
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Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Sun Jul 29, 2012 1:51 pm

I agree with the earlier post by Mike Thompson, that the Raspian Section of the Forum, is not the correct place for this discussion, which can hopefully be 'relocated, by either a Moderator, or by Admin.

Thanks.

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scep
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Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Sun Jul 29, 2012 2:00 pm

[moved to Feedback]

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Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Sun Jul 29, 2012 2:05 pm

The answer to your question is another question - would you like the Pi to cost more?

Personally, I think the Pi would be poorer for that as the DIY ethic would be lost and the (emerging) suite of software would be smaller, more poorly written, less adaptable and less orientated to user need - you might disagree.

I'm more for cooperation than competition. Despite this there are already multiple solutions available for things like GPIO libraries, Distros and other things.

I expect commercial Pi software/hardware will become available. Pi cases are a 'case' in point. No one's stopping entrapaneurship. I expect the Pi foundtion has employees already, and will take on more and will continue to develop products (like the camera module).

I agree its a bit pants about sound being such an issue but I expect that will be resolved in due course.

jerrylamos
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Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Sun Jul 29, 2012 3:14 pm

An example is Ubuntu where a $ Mark Shuttleworth $ has a small Canonical organization plus thousands and thousands of "volunteers" developing for Debian and Ubuntu.

Many of the other Linux organizations - see Distrowatch.com - hang on by a thread from lack of a steady funding source.

One of others, "Puppy" has a Rasperry Pi version with the Raspian libraries. Typically Puppy runs in memory and only saves on shutdown which would be good for minimizing SD writes. I don't know if Puppy behaves that way with Pi. My Pi is promised for Monday so hopefully I can contrast it to Debian next week.

Puppy is optimized for low end small memory. Most Debian development is concentrated at the high end but will run with lighter packages.

Jerry

Max

Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Sun Jul 29, 2012 3:33 pm

pygmy_giant wrote:The answer to your question is another question - would you like the Pi to cost more?
Given the 50k figure mentioned, and the 1 million Pies figure, we are talking about 5 pence a Pi?
If that could for example provide accelerated X and more stable USB/SDIO/Ethernet, it would be worth it.

mikerr
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Re: Shouldn't Rpi developers be payed by the Foundation?

Sun Jul 29, 2012 3:46 pm

Using open source means you get thousands of those 50k contract programmers for free - already.
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