Thursday, 23 August 2012

A Bit of a warning

To all those who read this for interesting pieces of software to use. I have a sad announcement I just bought a new phone or to be more specific an old phone. The Sony Ericsson p1i to be exact , much better than the IPhones and Androids of it's day and in my opinion still better at some things. (Hand writing recognition and UI) This means that I may end up writing a quite a bit of software which you won't be able to use, sorry. Unless of course you have a Symbian phone or I use a more cross platform development platform.

Currently the platforms I'm looking into are:

  • SDL/C++ 
    • My God they ported SDL to everything
  • UIQ3/C++ 
    • Probably not going to use this unless I can find a way of making use of the UIQ 2 OpenQub GUI builder
  • Java ME (Midlets)
  • HTML/JavaScript
    • This will be interesting as I will only be able to use a fraction of the API that I'm used to having
  • PhoneGap
    • Apparently early versions of this can run on UIQ
  • PyUIQ
    • Looks good for prototyping but not sure if it will be very useful
  • QT/C++
    • Basically QT only relies on the core part of the Symbian OS that both UIQ and S60 symbian phones have in common. So if I get it compiling I should be able to jump into QT creator and develop a nice QT app. Albeit with an older version of QT.
  • Emulators
    • The P1i has an impressive display of emulators which can all be developed for
      • Sega Mega Drive
      • Game Boy
      • Dos
      • C64
    • Obviously some of these aren't practical but then again some might be.
Anyway maybe something useful for others will come out of the server side stuff or there's a couple of people who still love UIQ devices out there who will see this post.

Friday, 17 August 2012

Musings on paying for my Open Source Software

So a little while ago I wrote a Ubuntu one plugin for KDE's dolphin. It works well enough but it is just a service menu and lacks the nice icons on the files and folders that the nautilus plugin has. This is due to an inherent limitation in dolphin plugins and in order to get this feature I would have to re-write the plugin as a version control plugin in C++. Unfortunately I'm working at the moment and don't really have the time but I could take a day or two off, write the plugin and put the files up on something like gumroad so people could pay to have them. Do you think people would pay for this ? I know I have several hundred installs directly from within dolphin and more from my website. What do you think about a license in which I give away the source with the app but say you can only edit it for your own needs and release it with a proper open source license (my personal preference is MIT) when a certain goal is reached? Is this a viable method of shipping software on Linux for larger projects with larger budgets and goals?
Lastly am I allowed to ask for money for a ubuntu one plugin? Since Canonical have copy right on Ubuntu. Other apps use ubuntu one is this any different? The U1 dev's seem sound enough and if it brings more people to the platform I'd say they'd be all for it but what do you guy's think?