Eclipse Foundation funds further development of Eclipse projects
The Eclipse Foundation are looking to employ a bit of financial self-love by administering Foundation funds directly into Eclipse projects. Up until now, the Foundation acted primarily as the emissary between development and Foundation members.
The Eclipse Foundation is investing in the future by directly plugging funds into the development of Eclipse projects. The new financing strategy was announced by Executive Director of the Eclipse Foundation Mike Milinkovich on his blog.
To date, the Foundation was understood to act primarily as an intermediary figure and leave development to the Foundation’s member companies.
The program is aimed, according to Milinkovich, at Eclipse users and businesses that can’t afford the time and resources themselves to actively participate in the improvement of Eclipse projects. Users should be able to allocate donations, which are used then by the Foundation specifically for the development of Eclipse projects. The focus will be based on the importance of the core platform, Java Development Tools and Web Tools.
How exactly the funds will be allocated is still being negotiated. It’s already clear that all donations from the Friends of Eclipse Program will be channeled into financing Eclipse developments. Last year, 120,000 Euros was raised; Milinkovich hopes to increase this sum via this newly pronounced purpose.
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Direct financing of this kind has already been carried out sporadically by other organisations in the past. Ericsson, for example, provided funds to advance development of SWT, gtk3 and PDE; the Foundation itself has provided financial support towards development work of the Eclipse Marketplace. Nevertheless, this form of financing has always been considered an exception to the rule of leaving the development of Eclipse projects solely in the hands of Foundation members.
Whether it comes to users being able to directly assign funds for resolving bugs remains questionable. Comments on Milinkovich’s original blog post indicate that this will be discussed in the future, but would also bring about a large administrative burden.
The exact design of the new funding program will hopefully be pursued with vigour soon. It would definitely be a welcome way to address the problem of dwindling numbers of developers assigned to the Eclipse core platform.