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Author Topic: Free Pascal and Lazarus foundation  (Read 2726 times)

JuhaManninen

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Free Pascal and Lazarus foundation
« on: August 04, 2017, 04:52:45 pm »
I move the discussion about the foundation to this new thread from the "Project of the Month on Sourceforge" thread.
The topics are not related anyhow. Please add all replies here instead of the original thread.

So far the "foundation" seems to be a closed organisation with three members. There is right now no statute (I wonder how long a translation should take...) and no financial report. I will wait for both before I even start thinking about to take that organisation serious.
It is a valid worry. It turned out to be a secretive organization with no info leaking out.
This goes against all the promises given for example in the Google+ page.

Questions about the motivation of Boian Mitov turn out to be valid, too.
Supporting FPC/Lazarus through a foundation was a backup plan for him when Idera bought Embarcadero at September 2015.
As Delphi survived and is not in danger, Boian Mitov's interest in FPC/Lazarus clearly waned.
At least he is not working on any SW related to FPC/Lazarus, yet he comprises 1/3 of the foundation dedicated to support it.
After reading the Google+ group messages again I realized that Maciej's analysis may be correct. The "events that pushed to go live" with the foundation at June 2016, 9 months after Idera / Embarcadero trade, had nothing to do with Delphi.

It is nasty, the Free Pascal and Lazarus foundation has somehow proclaimed as the "official" foundation. It effectively blocks any serious organized PR / publicity oriented effort in future. People hardly will put up another foundation when there already is an "official foundation".

Not at all. When dedicated funds come in, dedicated tasks are assigned and executed.
Some things that were funded through the foundation are already visible in the compiler and from what I see there is more to come. And I am an outsider.
Thaddy, how do you know? Do you have some inside information I don't have?
I follow the mailing lists (including Lazarus devel list), this forum, the foundation's Google+ page and its home page (https://foundation.freepascal.org/). I have not seen a single announcement after the initial messages ~1 year ago.
« Last Edit: August 04, 2017, 06:09:24 pm by JuhaManninen »

Thaddy

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Re: Free Pascal and Lazarus foundation
« Reply #1 on: August 04, 2017, 04:57:49 pm »
Juha, From the public information one can deduce that funding has been used... The hall of fame...
If that is not the case, it would be misleading, but I think it is the case....
"Logically, no number of positive outcomes at the level of experimental testing can confirm a scientific theory, but a single counterexample is logically decisive."

tudi_x

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Re: Free Pascal and Lazarus foundation
« Reply #2 on: August 04, 2017, 05:06:31 pm »
Is Boian Mitov related to Lazarus, because on his youtube channel there is no video or discussion related to Lazarus.

https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCQYa0HQyceaoAzqycN16qcg

JuhaManninen

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Re: Free Pascal and Lazarus foundation
« Reply #3 on: August 04, 2017, 05:31:20 pm »
Juha, From the public information one can deduce that funding has been used... The hall of fame...
If that is not the case, it would be misleading, but I think it is the case....
The hall of fame only says that donations are coming in. It says nothing about how they are used, or if they are used at all.
 https://foundation.freepascal.org/halloffame

Is Boian Mitov related to Lazarus, because on his youtube channel there is no video or discussion related to Lazarus.
He is related only through the foundation in which he has the role of "Treasurer".
He appears to be a skilled and diligent programmer, all kudos for that, but the foundation members should have some passion for the project they represent.

Thaddy

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Re: Free Pascal and Lazarus foundation
« Reply #4 on: August 04, 2017, 06:07:32 pm »
The hall of fame only says that donations are coming in. It says nothing about how they are used, or if they are used at all.
Elementary  dear Watson... ;) Deduction. You are following mailing lists and forum? In most if not all cases they were dedicated to a specific element.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sherlock_Holmes#.22Elementary.2C_my_dear_Watson.22 will tell you the quote is actually a free interpretation, but I feel I am close.
« Last Edit: August 04, 2017, 06:14:58 pm by Thaddy »
"Logically, no number of positive outcomes at the level of experimental testing can confirm a scientific theory, but a single counterexample is logically decisive."

hnb

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Re: Free Pascal and Lazarus foundation
« Reply #5 on: August 04, 2017, 07:01:24 pm »
The hall of fame only says that donations are coming in. It says nothing about how they are used, or if they are used at all.

Boian is outsider and he have no idea what is going on in community, Lazarus&FPC projects. All of Projects are realized without donations from"Mitov foundation". One day Sven said that bounties system has not much meaning for compiler improvements (and for him) which almost seems like true. Extended RTTI is (or soon will be) my part and I am working much to improve RTTI also on other aspects which is related to my last contribution - management operators. So no one knows for what this "Mitov foundation" needs money.

Is Boian Mitov related to Lazarus, because on his youtube channel there is no video or discussion related to Lazarus.
He is related only through the foundation in which he has the role of "Treasurer".
He appears to be a skilled and diligent programmer, all kudos for that, but the foundation members should have some passion for the project they represent.

I will start sooner or later foundation with clear targets and with real and detailed info about: what and how is sponsored. I am banned in this "Official foundation" so I will change again NewPascal project to "NewPascal" foundation. I am lucky because I have good law in my country for foundations so all will be really official.

what I doesn't like in "Official Mitov Lazarus/FPC foundation":

- No transparency
- IMO foundation is badly organized, there is no interaction with community
- The foundation was announced too early only because "NewPascal" idea born. How foundation can exist if the main reason was blocking NewPascal idea?
- I have ban in this foundation
« Last Edit: August 04, 2017, 08:16:28 pm by hnb »
Checkout NewPascal initiative and donate beer - ready to use tuned FPC compiler + Lazarus for mORMot project

best regards,
Maciej Izak

JuhaManninen

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Re: Free Pascal and Lazarus foundation
« Reply #6 on: August 04, 2017, 07:01:41 pm »
BTW: Blender foundation is great example of foundation:
https://www.blender.org/foundation/development-fund/
Can you please elaborate what makes it good. I honestly want to understand the issues involved here.
My own PR or marketing skills are poor, but PR, visibility and marketing are exactly what would be needed for FPC/Lazarus.

A related issue:
How open are foundations around FOSS projects in general?
Eg. how detailed reports they give of their finances?
This question came up when I asked about Lazarus donations balance earlier from people who have access to the PayPal account.
I questioned if there should be automatic open reporting. Surprisingly it is not reported by other project openly either. I tried to find information about support for KDE project which I have followed. I could not find any financial information!
I strongly feel it should be open information. The donations come from people using and supporting an open source project. Why should it be a secret?

I can reveal that lately a Mac was bought to Ondrej using the money from Lazarus PayPal donations account, in hope he may improve the HiDPI support also there. 1250€ was used, some 250€ still remain.
He truly deserves it! No empty promises but lots of functional code, using countless hours for it.
I honestly feel such information must be open in a community driven project.

Groffy

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Re: Free Pascal and Lazarus foundation
« Reply #7 on: August 04, 2017, 07:41:15 pm »
It is nasty, the Free Pascal and Lazarus foundation has somehow proclaimed as the "official" foundation. It effectively blocks any serious organized PR / publicity oriented effort in future. People hardly will put up another foundation when there already is an "official foundation".

Who proclaimed it, and who set the link on the offical Lazarus page? It seems to be connected to the Blaise Pascal magazine, it has the same address.

Maybe its boring that I again bring up the example of the Firebird Foundation, but I like the structure. The foundation has three different kinds of members

https://www.firebirdsql.org/en/membership/

Everything is elected by their members and the financial status is fully transparent. Its a lot of work and needs motivated and active members.


Best regards
« Last Edit: August 04, 2017, 07:43:51 pm by Groffy »
Linux Mint 18 - KDE / Windows7 / Lazarus 1.6.4 / trunk -qt

valdir.marcos

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Re: Free Pascal and Lazarus foundation
« Reply #8 on: August 04, 2017, 08:23:02 pm »
BTW: Blender foundation is great example of foundation:
https://www.blender.org/foundation/development-fund/
Can you please elaborate what makes it good. I honestly want to understand the issues involved here.
My own PR or marketing skills are poor, but PR, visibility and marketing are exactly what would be needed for FPC/Lazarus.

A related issue:
How open are foundations around FOSS projects in general?
Eg. how detailed reports they give of their finances?
This question came up when I asked about Lazarus donations balance earlier from people who have access to the PayPal account.
I questioned if there should be automatic open reporting. Surprisingly it is not reported by other project openly either. I tried to find information about support for KDE project which I have followed. I could not find any financial information!
I strongly feel it should be open information. The donations come from people using and supporting an open source project. Why should it be a secret?

I can reveal that lately a Mac was bought to Ondrej using the money from Lazarus PayPal donations account, in hope he may improve the HiDPI support also there. 1250€ was used, some 250€ still remain.
He truly deserves it! No empty promises but lots of functional code, using countless hours for it.
I honestly feel such information must be open in a community driven project.

Here are some good and rare examples of transparency about the money coming in and what results it brings:
The Document Foundation (TDF) recent financial reports for LibreOffice:
https://www.reddit.com/r/linux/comments/6orv95/document_foundation_libreoffice_annual_report_2016/
https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/images/c/cb/AnnualReport2016HR.pdf
https://blog.documentfoundation.org/blog/2016/08/11/annual-report-2015/
http://tdf.io/report2015
https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/File:TDFAnnualReport2015LR.pdf
https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/File:TDFAnnualReport2015LR.pdf
http://tdf.io/report2015hq
https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/File:TDFAnnualReport2015HR.pdf
https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/images/2/2b/TDFAnnualReport2015HR.pdf
http://www.lulu.com/shop/the-document-foundation/annual-report-2016/paperback/product-23265884.html

Another examples:
http://www.uif.uillinois.edu/documents/AuditorsReports/UIF_FY16_Financial_Audit.pdf
https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/foundation/annualreport/2015/
https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/foundation/annualreport/2015/faq/
https://static.mozilla.com/moco/en-US/pdf/2015_Mozilla_Audited_Financial_Statement.pdf
https://static.mozilla.com/moco/en-US/pdf/2015_Mozilla_Foundation_Forms_990_Public_Disclosure.pdf
https://www.mozilla.org/en-US/foundation/documents/


I am Brazilian and I live in Brazil.
As you all know, my country has been experiencing a serious political and economic crisis since 2014, which has led to a recession, both technically and officially, and the president herself has lost her mandate.
Even so, I've been talking to some friends, clients, managers, and business owners to make donations to the Firebird and Free Pascal and Lazarus projects, among a few others open source projects.
If there were transparency, it would help a lot in this dialogue.
Since there is no transparency in dealing with donated money, I have argued on those conversations about choosing some ideas and directly paying some programmers to implement them.
This is far from ideal since we are not aware of what would be best for the core and future of those projects. The little money raised would be spent only on "less noble" themes that are relatively quick to implement and easily seen by the companies that are paying for them. It's sad, but it's what's possible.
Whenever I talk about donating to foundations, I always hear questions such as "where are the financial reports?" or "how much does the foundation's structure costs and how much is left over for the projects?" or "who can vote on the projects and who can be elected?." Or jokes of bad taste based on the reality of our times, as "foundations are places for corruption and job hanger, like many Brazilian unions, many Brazilian sports foundations, FIFA and the UN."
I am trying to help, but it's really hard to get donations here in Brazil outside of programmers donating some small amount of their own salaries...

valdir.marcos

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Re: Free Pascal and Lazarus foundation
« Reply #9 on: August 04, 2017, 08:36:00 pm »
Can you please elaborate what makes it [Blender foundation] good. I honestly want to understand the issues involved here.
My own PR or marketing skills are poor, but PR, visibility and marketing are exactly what would be needed for FPC/Lazarus.
...
How open are foundations around FOSS projects in general?
Eg. how detailed reports they give of their finances?
...
I strongly feel it should be open information. The donations come from people using and supporting an open source project. Why should it be a secret?
...
I honestly feel such information must be open in a community driven project.

Beyond that, a serious foundation should have some clear goals and a time frame:
https://www.firebirdsql.org/en/planning-board/
https://www.firebirdsql.org/en/roadmap/
https://wiki.asterisk.org/wiki/display/AST/Asterisk+Versions
https://wiki.samba.org/index.php/Samba_Release_Planning
https://wiki.samba.org/index.php/Release_Planning_for_Samba_4.7
https://wiki.documentfoundation.org/ReleasePlan/5.4
« Last Edit: August 04, 2017, 09:41:10 pm by valdir.marcos »

JuhaManninen

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Re: Free Pascal and Lazarus foundation
« Reply #10 on: August 04, 2017, 09:52:55 pm »
Elementary  dear Watson... ;) Deduction.
::)
It tells much about the situation that we must resort to Sherlock Holmes methods to figure out what the foundation does.

Phil

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Re: Free Pascal and Lazarus foundation
« Reply #11 on: August 04, 2017, 10:10:54 pm »
My own PR or marketing skills are poor, but PR, visibility and marketing are exactly what would be needed for FPC/Lazarus.

A foundation isn't how you would do that.

If you want attention for Lazarus, one effective approach would be to do what has been suggested here (by Thaddy most recently, I believe, but probably others as well): Write a great app that lots of people want to use. Bonus points if you do a case study for it. Extra bonus points if you open source it.

Great recent example:

http://www.delphifeeds.com/go/s/141361

One challenge for Lazarus is that apps that people want to use nowadays tend to be mobile and/or Web-based, not Lazarus's strengths.

JuhaManninen

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Re: Free Pascal and Lazarus foundation
« Reply #12 on: August 04, 2017, 10:28:50 pm »
I will start sooner or later foundation with clear targets and with real and detailed info about: what and how is sponsored. I am banned in this "Official foundation" so I will change again NewPascal project to "NewPascal" foundation. I am lucky because I have good law in my country for foundations so all will be really official.
"Foundation" is a registered official legal entity. Initially using the word with NewPascal was factually wrong because you did not have a legal foundation. Once you register it then you can use the word.
However I ask you to hold it back now. We must have a well organized system that truly supports the projects and which is widely accepted by its developers and users.
Just creating competing foundations will not bring anything good.

Quote
- The foundation was announced too early only because "NewPascal" idea born. How foundation can exist if the main reason was blocking NewPascal idea?
Yes, it seems "going live" and creating its home page & Google+ page was caused by NewPascal, as weird as it sounds. However there was no other "event" that would force Boian Mitov to hurry with it.
The foundation was created already 9 months earlier, then motivated by unsecurity of Delphi's future. That is again a wrong motivation. Delphi's owner arrangements should not affect the support for our projects, not by much anyway.
So, both decisions were made by one man and for wrong reasons!
Are the other 2 members just passengers? This must be discussed with them somewhere.

Anyway I sympathize you Maciej. First you were seriously attacked by the horrible Jon Lennart person with claims like "open source means no business".
Then you got negative feedback from Boian.
In both cased you had first created good, innovative SW that improved things. Why it all happened? Quite amazing!
High quality code is a Holy thing in a programming project, attacking it is a big SinO:-)

Who proclaimed it, and who set the link on the offical Lazarus page? It seems to be connected to the Blaise Pascal magazine, it has the same address.
Yes, Detlef Overbeek is the editor-in-chief of Blaise Pascal magazine. He has organized FPC & Lazarus related meetings, including the Lazarus 1.0 announcement event at 2012.
Michael V.C. is a long-time respected FPC developer.
With those people the foundation looked like a good thing, but it doesn't look so good any more.

Quote
https://www.firebirdsql.org/en/membership/
Thanks for this and all the other links everybody. It will take some time to read them...
I have many activities like picking blueberries in near future.
« Last Edit: August 04, 2017, 11:18:57 pm by JuhaManninen »

JuhaManninen

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Re: Free Pascal and Lazarus foundation
« Reply #13 on: August 04, 2017, 11:01:56 pm »
If you want attention for Lazarus, one effective approach would be to do what has been suggested here (by Thaddy most recently, I believe, but probably others as well): Write a great app that lots of people want to use. Bonus points if you do a case study for it. Extra bonus points if you open source it.
True but if there is a foundation then it should be managed properly and openly.
One option is to have no foundation and concentrate in code. That's what people have been doing now for a long time.

No FOSS project has become good and popular by paying bounties for selected features. It was mentioned also by mORMot developer A. Bouchez in the foundation Google+ page. He used Linux kernel as an example.
Paying a small salary for a developer so he does not need to find other work may be more effective.
Still, I think a foundation's the main purpose should be advertising and publicity. The code is typically created for other reasons than money.

Phil

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Re: Free Pascal and Lazarus foundation
« Reply #14 on: August 04, 2017, 11:18:11 pm »
Paying a small salary for a developer so he does not need to find other work may be more effective.
Still, I think a foundation's the main purpose should be advertising and publicity. The code is typically created for other reasons than money.

That's essentially what companies that open source their code are doing. But they have a business model that allows them to pay employees to do that. For an open source project, there needs to be a different mechanism. Maybe a foundation can play that role if it can actually raise money, but I would never think of a foundation as being involved in advertising or publicity. In the U.S. most public universities have foundations, but these are largely behind-the-scenes support organizations that take care of things that would be distractions from the university's core educational and research missions. They're not PR machines.

 

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