John Sample

Bits and Bytes
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Friday, February 10, 2006

On the source

Ok, I've been talking about releasing the source for a while now so let me explain the delay and recruit suggestions on how to proceed.

First of all, thanks for the all the email. I stopped responding for a bit there and I hope to do better in the future.

Second, I'm torn on how to release the source. If you have seen the background of the project so far you'll discover this started as a pet project after I couldn't find any viable source for reverse geocoding information. The installer was a nice touch, but keeping up with both the evolving census data and actual improvements to the program has gotten out of hand. Right now the installer has been (obviously) rendered useless until I can revamp it.

Part of the lack of communication was due to an episode with a user who needed help. It was a long, drawn out, frustrating email exchange which eventually netted a working system. I later found out the user was the employee of a LARGE global consulting firm and they were putting it on a client's system. (Hehe, whoever the client is got ripped off.)
I love GPL zealots, but frankly I'm not one of them as my mortgage gets paid by designing software.

Before I release the source I'd like to find a way to license it so that it can be used by small developers/low commercial/nonprofit but also balance the need for compensation for commercial use. I'm not looking for the “give it away and make money in support” model here because I really don't have the time and it would probably violate my employment terms. 

What I'm looking for:
1. Allow non commercial use.
2. No reselling, repackaging, commercial use without permission, although this doesn't necessarily mean any purchase is involved.

Ideally I'd like to form some sort of co-op where contributors could benefit from commercial use.

Anyway, any ideas on how to license this thing to protect the time investment it requires?


posted @ 2:43 PM | Feedback (10)