2011: From the desk of Haiku, Inc.
2011 has been an amazing year for Haiku in many ways. It is easy to see the improvements in Haiku (the operating system) by looking at the nightly builds or the bug tracker. In quite such a tangible way. Haiku, Inc. serves as the business arm of the project, if you will, collecting donations, handling paperwork, dealing with web hosting, etc. It is a little harder to see some of the improvements in Haiku, Inc. sometimes - they are a little more "behind the scenes", so we wanted to take this time to talk about all of the good stuff that has happened!
A big part of the reason for all of the improvements in the code base is that Haiku, Inc. was able to fund more developer time than ever before. More than 1,100 hours of development was paid this year, including, for the first time ever, a 6 month contract! Contracts with Oliver, Ingo and Michael have resulted in massive improvements in the code. As with all of Haiku's contributors, they give of their time and their talent freely whenever they can, but you know that when YOU get home from work, it is hard to motivate yourself to do EVEN MORE work. By making Haiku their paid work as well as their hobby, we make it easier for Haiku to move toward R1.
Of course, you can't pay developers without money. Haiku, Inc. has received far more donations this year than ever. While the final numbers have not yet been calculated, we came close to our goal of $30,000 for the year! So far, that includes donations from 349 unique donors (up from 193 last year). We would like to give special thanks to Haikuware which donated $10,000 as well as $2,000 from his Haikuware Bounties project. A couple of things to remember:
- Haiku, Inc. is a 501(c)3 which means that your donation is tax deductible (of course, talk to your accountant to be sure!)
- Haiku, Inc. has (almost) no administrative overhead. All of the administration is done on a volunteer basis. This means that (almost) every penny goes to either web hosting or funding development
- Donors are mentioned on the public sponsors page (if they wish)
- Since November, all financial contributors are acknowledged with a thank-you letter
Haiku, Inc. also handles all of the trademarks for Haiku. As you all know, Haiku is open source (MIT licensed). This allows ANYONE to use the source code and build whatever system best suits them. They can choose to send us their changes or not (as they choose). This allows maximum freedom for all users. In order to ensure, though, that no one can call something Haiku that really isn't, we have registered trademarks on our logo and our name. This is similar to what Mozilla has done with Firefox - it doesn't stop true open source development, as is evidenced by IceWeasel, but it does make sure that if you download something that LOOKS like Firefox, it IS Firefox.
As we look forward to 2012, we are happy to be able to announce that we have the finances to support Michael Lotz for a SECOND 6 month term. We are also in a position to be able to consider additional contracts from other contributors who are interested in working on Haiku! We look forward to seeing proposals from those who are interested! Of course, the best way to apply is to "make a name for yourself" by submitting code first.
Thank you to everyone who has donated, submitted bug reports, code changes, or been active in any way with Haiku and/or Haiku, Inc. We look forward to a bright Haiku future!