Open source

Wishlists for new functionality and features.
Post Reply
null
Posts: 4
Joined: 09 Mar 2021 05:23

Open source

Post by null »

It feels almost a shame to have such a glorious, useful tool being closed source freeware.
I know there might be a reason for staying closed source, but if there are, it is very interesting to know what they are.

I have previously been kicked out of freeware communities for raising this question, but please understand that I am in no way pressuring you into opening the source code. I am just curious, very curious.
Maël
Site Admin
Posts: 1333
Joined: 12 Mar 2005 14:15

Re: Open source

Post by Maël »

I am not fundamentally opposed to making HxD open source some day in the future, the plugin framework is open source already.

But making HxD fully open source is not trivial:
  • The main reason is that some of the source code requires a license (for which I would have to find alternatives).
  • HxD is written in Delphi, which is not used by many developers.
  • Making HxD an open source project will likely not reduce the work, but add managing of code submissions, and making everything ready for public consumption (more documentation for example).
  • I haven't seen people participate much in related projects from other authors, after they were open sourced.
I participated in several open source projects and still do, but they were begun as such. My experience is that when a project does not have a very significant backing, making it open source will not reduce the work.

Sure, people might want to add some quick&dirty fixes/patches for things that irks them, but that's no the same as dedicating continuous energy to a project, and ends up creating more work for transforming such submissions into truly generic and quality solutions.

Finally, HxD started as a personal project, and I invested a lot of energy for almost 2 decades now. Open sourcing all would be giving it away completely, and would require a very strong benefit.
null
Posts: 4
Joined: 09 Mar 2021 05:23

Thank you

Post by null »

Thank you for your explanation.

You are the first to share your reasons of all the freeware developer I asked.

Out of my wild curiosity, can you share what are the major components which you could not release due to licensing.
And whether making it a "sources provided" project, without accepting submissions be considered, should you think of opening the source code?
Maël
Site Admin
Posts: 1333
Joined: 12 Mar 2005 14:15

Re: Open source

Post by Maël »

@License: It's various internal code I wrote, that I also used when developing paid software / doing commissioned work.

Regarding open sourcing HxD. It's not that the code submissions are the major issue, it's about giving away the source code for free, and having to add more work into it, so that people can really use it.

I am looking for something that is of mutual benefit, and offsets my long-term investment in time (and money), so far.

When people have asked me about how some specific problems were solved/implemented in the past, I usually share and explain. But yeah, it's not about reducing the pain of going open source, it's about adding value, dare I say, for me ;)

Why would you like HxD to be open source? What are the benefits (for both sides)?
Maël
Site Admin
Posts: 1333
Joined: 12 Mar 2005 14:15

Re: Open source

Post by Maël »

Any reply?
null
Posts: 4
Joined: 09 Mar 2021 05:23

Re: Open source

Post by null »

Maël wrote: 18 Mar 2021 13:40Any reply?
Sorry for late reply - been busy

My question rose purely out of curiosity.
I, possibly heavily indoctrinated by a certain "Stallman", always wondered why freeware developers, which (as it looks, at very least) don't plan on getting money out of their work, don't just release the sources along their work.

Value of open source is not that one has to clean up the code (which, imho, one doesn't)
Its not about people fixing ones code, and not about you having to coordinate the submissions.
It is that it's there, and likely will be till the end of the internet.
It's the internal feeling that no matter what, development may stop, but the effort (and donations :wink: ) are there always.
It's a feeling of security in the future of the software. Once gone open, one can effectively revert only for non-contributed code, only for future versions.
I spent much time in the environment, and with the mindset of software being made open by default unless there is a reason to keep it closed.

I understand now, that it's just not worth the effort to replace the licensed code.
And it's still uncertain whether the project can bring you money, or stay purely for public, free use.
Those are valid reasons, obtaining which was the main goal of starting this topic.
Post Reply