Subject RE: [Firebird-general] Re: "DevCo" & Firebird
Author Steve Summers
>-----Original Message-----
>From paulruizendaal

SES wrote:
>> But I don't think an organization would need to hire 10 to 20 people
>> to kill Firebird- I suspect they'd only need to get 3-8 core people.
>I challenge you: name the 5 individuals that, if taken out, would stop
>the community dead in its tracks.

I didn't say "Stop the community dead in its tracks". I did say "Kill
firebird", but that was an abbreviated reference to the sentence in the
prior paragraph where I said "if the FB project stopped advancing...". My
contention is that if an organization were able to get Dmitry and Claudio,
and then get from them the names of the next 2-6 best people who really
understand the core engine code and hire them too, the forward progress of
Firebird 3 would at least MOSTLY stop. That in itself wouldn't kill
Firebird as an ongoing product, but if the people doing it also did what I
conjectured in the following paragraph, and used negative publicity to hurt
public perception of Firebird's chances of remaining viable, THAT could kill
the project, given a few years. After all - there ARE other free database
options out there. I think Firebird is the best of them, for OUR needs- but
that would no longer be true if the prospects of an FB 3 within the next
couple years, and an FB 4 beyond that, became unrealistic.

As far as meeting your challenge to name names, I can't do that. I "know"
the developers only though their postings in the architect and devel
newsgroups. Other than knowing Dmitry is the team leader and Claudio is the
gatekeeper, I can't say how much contribution each of the other names
actually makes, or if there are others (perhaps many others?) who quietly
work on the system without posting much, if at all. But if I were DevCo and
wanted to KNOW who those people are, I'd know enough to hire Claudio to get
their names and relative values.

>There is more to consider. Restarting now would much easier than back
>in 2000. There are working builds, books, newsgroups with thousands of
>posts, tens (if not hundreds) of people with at least partial
>understanding of the core engine, etc.

If you're right that there are tens to hundreds of people with enough
understanding of the core engine to keep it moving, then I'm wrong, and
HAPPY to be wrong- I'd hate to see the scenario I've pondered become true,
both because we have a big commitment to Firebird, and because I've gained a
lot of respect for many of you through my (mostly lurking) in these
newsgroups, and I know you have FAR bigger commitments to FB than I do.

>Also, not everybody may be easy to hire. Hiring Ann away from MySQL,
>Sean from Broadview and me from Janus would probably require amazing
>amounts of money. It would not be worth it.

I'd have to hire all of you (and more) to destroy the community, but maybe
not to stall forward progress on FB 3. Of course, if I were running Oracle,
YOUR name would have come up in at least a few conversations. Oracle mode
Firebird could, if it reaches its potential reasonably quickly, be a real
threat to Oracle at the low end, where small and medium size companies value
their capital more than the name on the box their DBMS CD came in. And when
it comes to amazing amounts of money, they have that!

>Last but not least, what would be the use? How would DevCo, or anybody
>else, be better off with a wounded community? Even MySQL these days has
>a vested interest in our community succeeding. The only people who
>would benefit would be MS, as far as I can see.

In the short term, if the organization that buys Borland's IDEs decides that
Firebird's existence is a hinderence to Interbase's sales, then they could
decide to spend more money (say, two million dollars for 10 more developers)
to speed up its development, and make it so much better that FB won't be
able to compete as well. So who would be the BEST PEOPLE to hire for that?
Oh, maybe Claudio, Dmitry, etc? That would be a double-win- they'd get
excellent programmers who already understand the code, AND they'd hurt FB.
Doesn't sound that far-fetched to me.