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news and thoughts on and around the development of the iCite net
by Jay Fienberg

Making money (to buy CDs), on open source?

posted: Jun 11, 2003 4:57:18 PM

This morning I saw Carlos E. Perez's cool post on 101 Ways to Make Money on Open Source. Here is my roundabout (possibly irrelevant) story about seeing this:

prologue: like, the journey begins
Today, while out on my morning walk (with Anastasia, of course, for those who know her), we stopped by the local record store, Streetlight Records, to look for Father's Day gifts for our fathers. For those who don't know me well, I consider buying CDs (or asking for them for birthday gifts) my principal addiction.

chapter 1: holly freaking CD addiction
So, this morning I was freaking out because I kept seeing things I really wanted, but couldn't buy any of them because, not earning any income at present, I can't afford it. I always have to restrain my CD appetite even when fully employed, and I am a pretty disciplined considering. And, I am also realistic and know that I can afford a CD here or there even in my present financial state. (Anastasia actually bought us the new Radiohead CD yesterday.)

But, financially, today was not a day to buy CDs, yet I was in the CD store and, oh, just coming across cool things that I really wanted. The hardest for me is when I see a CD that is something I wish were on CD but I didn't know was actually available—and, that even available, is still a relatively rare find. (This morning, I found an X-Ray Specs Anthology CD—they were one of my favorite bands when I was about 14.)

So, in the end, I left the store only with some gifts for Anastasia's and my dads—I didn't get anything for myself.

chapter 2: doh! the search for gold again?
Anyway, besides looking for a job, I am doing this project here called the iCite net. I am not doing it to make money, but I am having a lot of fun doing it such that I think it would be very cool if it did make money somehow and I could earn a living doing it.

I have a nice picture in my mind: I am working on the iCite net project, people are using it and like it, a bunch of them pay a little bit for some service or other associated with it, I am making a living providing some aspect of this service, and I have a few extra bucks to go and buy a some of the CDs I saw today that I wanted: X-Ray Specs, The Last Poets, Sun Ra, King Crimson, Smog, Pavement, Lightning Hopkins, Deerhoof, Tom Waits . . .

chapter 3: the 101 options—yeah, get crazy, wow
So, one of the first things I saw online this morning was Carlos E. Perez's post on 101 Ways to Make Money on Open Source. I think Carlos' ::Manageability:: blog is one of the best blogs on Java—he consistently has interesting things to say about Java and computer programming paradigms in general. This post was great and helpful to me, in my present state.

epilogue: the ever unanswered questions—totally
Now, I still have to make some decisions today between looking for jobs, developing the iCite net, making use of a free pass to the JavaOne Pavilion, working on my three new songs already partially recorded, and / or putting together the new CD cabinet we just got (all our CDs have been on the floor since we moved into our current place a few months ago: and we have never had a real CD cabinet).

Plus tonight, I want to hang out with some friends In Berkeley (going to get chaat for dinner, because it is so inexpensive), and then come home and be with Anastasia. So, is there any way to negotiate a balance between relationships, art, fun, personal obsessions, and earning a living?

If you have working on such a negotiation protocol, could you please release it open source? Post it on SourceForge and send me a link. I will be looking forward to the stable relase, but am willing to beta test if it looks good ;-)

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