[Arm-netbook] EOMA68 / Libre RISC-V team financing

Luke Kenneth Casson Leighton lkcl at lkcl.net
Mon Jan 1 09:34:47 GMT 2018

[ron, thank you for writing this, it's very insightful and thoughtful]

On Sat, Dec 30, 2017 at 10:01 AM,  <ronwirring at safe-mail.net> wrote:

> If beneficial to lkcl, he can erase me from the
> shipping list and no refund. I ask others to do the same.

 that's really appreciated, that you would consider making what is in
effect a donation or sponsorship.  my primary concern here, is, that
the computers that i am making *remain in circulation and in use*.  so
this is actually really rather important (enough so that i'll probably
make a special update about it, now that i think about it).

 if anyone is backing the project with the intention of seeing it
succeed but *not* actually intending to find someone who will
*actually* use the computer, please do contact crowdsupply -
orders at crowdsupply.com - with your order number (cc me) and say "hello
i would like to turn my pledge into a donation, for luke to find
someone to donate or sell the computer to, thank you".

> I think lkcl has done more than one can expect. He
> likely has gathered experiences and
> knowledge about libre hardware, he
> can use moving forward.

 ... and anyone else can as well: that's primarily why i pushed
through joshua's initial reticence at the length of each update that i
write.  i learned from openmoko, and from openpandora, and many
others: i in turn am simply doing the same thing.

> If lkcl can contribute to the riscv development,
> he rather should do that, than potter
> on an arm cpu, none of us like.
> What I want to avoid is, that lkcl on
> economic reasons gets discouraged and jammed.


> I know the following is not achievable. I say it anyway.
> One option is, lkcl sets a monthly required amount of
> money for the next 6 months. I am prepared to pay
> lkcl 5usd a month. But only if I know lkcl gets the
> required sum every month. 5Usd is cheap, I
> know. If you want to pay more do it.

 everything helps.  it's the fundamental basis of crowd-funding.

> To me this matter is another prove of libre software
> people not being streamlined. Libre software
> people are up against companies like intel and
> amd. Libre software people cannot expect to
> achieve results if the matter is not better organized.

 well, what's really nice is that intel, amd and ARM are now up
against the Indian Government.  my unexpected role seems to be to keep
madhu's feet on the ground as he's like.. a high-torque Muscle Car
Motor... without a gearbox to put all that power into
"rubber-on-the-road" :)

> Among libre software people there should be a
> system of fellowships enabling persons to work
> on free software. No it does not have to
> be lkcl.

 ... and it shouldn't.  i have enough to do.

> But such system should be created.
> How should it be founded?

 there do exist several. it does seem though that certain well-known
and well-respected people whose contribution has been consistent and
long-term *within their community* can receive funding - if they ask
for it - pretty much immediately.  the value they're offering is
clear.  i'm thinking in particular of joey hess.  joey raised i think
it was USD $100,000 in a DAY or something mad for an idea he had to
create a distributed automated home directory mounting system based
around git, so that people in the free software community could not
just back up files off-site but also if they went to conferences or
wherever they could *borrow* a random piece of equipment when they
arrived and gain *direct* access to their home directory.

 here he is:


so interestingly he started on kickstarter (where his project
immediately became a "staff pick"), then did a second campaign using
his own infrastructure... because he's technically competent to handle
that, and because he is extremely well-known and well-liked.  and has
consistently demonstrated an ability to *communicate* effectively with
people across the world.

 this is what crowdsupply helped *me* with, enormously: they provided
me with a platform where i could easily *communicate*.  i had to do
non-stop 6 hour marathons *every damn day* on different forums (70 in
total over the course of the campaign - i kept a list so i could
myself keep track), *and* still spend time to write updates (every 2-3
days), without which there wouldn't be anything *to* actually talk
about on those various forums.

 so... if anything... the lesson is that it's not so much the medium
or method as it is the ability (and the tools behind you) to
communicate effectively.


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