If you haven’t noticed, I have had a real good time with helping to take Hammer 2.0 to Hammer 3.0.
Really enjoyed working on it and I still enjoy doing so, but perhaps a bit too much.

What is all this about?

Let’s turn back the clock a bit, not to the early days of the project, but to when Sergey and me starting debating on how wonderful it would be to pick up development on the Hammer again. After chatting a bit it turned out that The Hammer -after all that time since we released version 2.0- was still an important development tool for the both of us. Imagine that, development had mostly stalled for 10 years and yet there we are both still using it on a daily bases!

So we both set out to make a great new Hammer since early March and I think we succeeded, quite well even. I think it is pretty great already and we are not at the official 3.0 release yet.

If you want to know what the Hammer is please see these forum posts:
Hammer 3 in alpha
Hammer 3 beta

Today I had the pleasure of seeing my financial results for this month again and it isn’t exactly the way it should be to put it mildly. Welcome back to reality, yikes!
Me spending 4 to 5 hours a day on the Hammer 3.0 is not helping much either.

What are the options?

Do I want to continue developing on making the Hammer great again? YES, very much so.
But the way it is, the way it looks like right now is that I have to scale back development to just a few hours a week and refocus on projects that help paying the bills.
The way normal people working on open source do. Maybe that is the solution, but I am hoping it isn’t as I have so many ideas in my head on what I can make The Hammer 3.0 do for you, but that needs some serious development time, not just the odd hour every now and then.
Yes I’ll get there, but then we’re back again on the “it’s probably going to take years” plan.

What doesn’t work is asking for donations.

Really I very much appreciate the donations received over time for vdf-guidance. But I think that EUR 100 in 4 years doesn’t pay much rent.
So I could try a donation funding round and it might help funding for a week of development and then we are back at square one. So no offense, donations are very much appreciated, but they are not a long term solution for a funding problem.
Besides that, there’s the issue that is problematic for accounting. Donations to a not officially registered foundation are a problem on my end as well as problematic for any company wanting to help out (again bookkeeping).

My main suggestion would be to offer a yearly subscription for DataFlex Tool Development from VDF-Guidance via my company. So you get billed with official invoices from a company, taxes are being paid as it should etcetera. If for whatever reason you think that I do not deliver value then you just stop the subscription, end of story.
With a subscription at different levels, eg. EUR 75.00/year for a small developer, EUR 150.00/year for a company with multiple developers and ??? for a larger company.
I am hoping that could work, but I don’t know.
Can’t oversee it all and don’t want to start going down this road if it has no chance of success.

Have I considered other alternatives like developing premium features available only for paying customers. Sure, but I don’t want to go there. The tool should be available for everyone like it is now, not locking anybody out, code should be available at any time so that you can customise it to your needs.

I do not believe that I would be able to raise the EUR 2000.-/month that I would need to continue on the current path, but perhaps we can try and see?

Finally another thing that could help tremendously is just normal paid work for projects (yip) that help me funding for the open source work that I would like to do. It’s at an all time low right now and I”m currently to start looking at alternatives, anywhere, not necessarily DataFlex.

Am I crazy for wanting to try this? Probably.

Could this work? Perhaps, without trying we will never know.
Please don’t start sending money or anything, if you could commit to a certain subscription model then you can email me
(See email address at http://antwise.com/about.htm ) and tell me numbers, but I won’t start any subscriptions unless it has at least a chance of success to fund the Hammer project.

Any feedback welcome of course