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68

I think part of the issue is that when you bootleg software, movies, etc. you only deprive someone of a potential sale. The person selling the goods is no worse off than if you had simply done without it. When you steal a physical good, you actually deprive someone of that good. The person is worse off than if you had simply done without it, because they ...


37

One issue is that you can often get a better product by pirating instead of buying. Games frequently come with DRM that can make them difficult or impossible to play legitimately, and some DRM has damaged people's computers. You can't buy the non-DRM versions, you can only pirate them. Some people buy games, don't bother opening the shrinkwrap, and then ...


27

In my experience, the most productive rockstar programmers in an organisation are almost always people who are truly passionate about what they do. So the trick is to find people for whom the "work itself is the reward", not some "external" stimulus such as better pay. As for how pay rises should be done - I'm not sure. I've always essentially just been a ...


20

This video has excellent insights on what motivates people: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u6XAPnuFjJc It does not give an answer on how people should be motivated but it does say how they shouldn't. In the video Daniel Pink gives a lot of examples of money rewards that don't work (sometimes they do the opposite of what you want). By the end of the video ...


18

The formula that I usually follow: Initial Rate = Your hourly rate * worst case estimate of number of hours you'd need to finish this project + Expenses Expenses = Power Cost + Money transaction costs (wire, western union etc) if applicable + Any hardware or software that you needed to purchase for your work + Internet Connection Costs Final Rate = (1 - ...


18

I think a big part of it is the act of duplication. And this goes for all forms of IP, not just software. The thought process is basically this: "If I take a program/movie/song/whatever, and make a copy of it, there are now 2 of them instead of 1. And the person who had the first copy still has it, they haven't lost anything!" - This is quite different to ...


17

To understand why Annual Reviews are teamicide, consider the consequences of the following analog: Your marriage is going along great, but you decide that once per year you need to have a conversation with your wife initiated by the question : "How do you think our marriage is working out?" followed by "Let's talk about what you have done right and what ...


17

Up-Front + Milestones Typically, you should have some payment up-front to begin work. Then, have milestones where you deliver some part of the project to them, or show an update to progress where the next payment is due. This way you have the incentive to keep working on the project, because you don't get paid the full amount until you deliver, and they ...


15

Lots of good answers but I'd suggest another: Because they've not yet had to face the consequences of piracy. By that I don't mean fines, prison or other legal sanctions, I mean the impact on software developers, authors and so on. One of the justifications for music piracy is that it actually ends up being marketing for the band live and there is some ...


14

Its economics 101: the marginal cost of producing software is 0, and people are used to roughly estimating value by marginal cost (along with the comparative prices of other similar goods). There's lots of free software available, and it costs nothing to duplicate any software. So, in general, people don't see much value in it unless it very obviously ...


14

If it's directly for work, unless there's an understanding otherwise, the company should absolutely pay for it. It doesn't matter if it's all day for two weeks, if that's a reasonable amount of time to learn the framework. If the company hires a programmer with the understanding that they don't already have that skill, the company, generally, should pay for ...


13

Honestly, a lot of developers will be happy just to be given work-time to do that in -- as long as their contributions are publicly accessible (ie. not some private intranet blogging tool). The rest will do a half-assed job, even if you sit at their backs and hold a gun to their heads. Why bother trying to convince those?


11

Things I personally have seen in the performance review process that have actively harmed morale and productivity in the organization: All the managers were in the same bonus pool, the most senior guy rated everyone else down so that he got the entire pool to himself. Needless to say the managers were livid. People were told they could be rated no higher ...


10

There are several reasons not related to perceived value or cost. Cracked software overrides DRM which means I can actually use it the way I want. It's actually difficult to buy some software. I actually had to call Microsoft Support to find out where I could buy a copy of VS Professional. By the time I actually had a copy in hand, I could have ...


10

This is from another international freelancer (I'm currently in Pakistan). If they're giving you a visa to the U.S, take it. Work until you can be free from them and still stay in the U.S, but don't let a chance to get U.S citizenship /permanent residence slip from you because of 1-2 years of stressful work life. People from your and my country have had to ...


9

I ask clients to pay 50% up front and 50% when the project is complete and I have given it to them. I have lost a lot of money in the past when clients suddenly pull out and I have not gotten anything off them up front. With the 50% up front you know you can trust them and it will cover your development costs. They will also feel happy that you won't get ...


9

You should be aware that there's a possibility that the only reason they were willing to take you back is because they need you to complete your current project and will simply fire you after you're no longer needed. From a business perspective, you've already shown them that you're likely to quit when you don't enjoy the work so they want to make sure ...


8

The ease of getting software without paying for it. The act of duplication is easy. Copying/applying a crack might be even less hassle than getting it "properly". Use of the duplicated software might be easier (no DRM constraints etc.). It is easy to avoid prosecution. Stealing cars or shop items is far more risky. It is culturally easy. Just like certain ...


8

Answers seem to be coming down on the effect of software piracy and it's relative harm, mostly due to the marginal cost of the software duplication. After all, once a team has created the software the cost of making more of the same is effectively zero. Pure profit I hear you cry. Not so. This team of (non-corporate) people has invested their own personal ...


6

As I said in a comment, there's a lot of people that feel entitled to having a piece of software (be it an advanced piece of image editing software or the latest video game), and feel that it's OK to pirate something if you can't afford it - probably also because pirating something is a lot easier than stealing. There was a discussion years ago about ...


6

price = desired hourly rate * (estimated number of hours to complete * 3) + expenses Thats what I used to use, at least, when estimating projects.


6

It makes absolute sense in theory and in isolation. Pay the best guy the most, and make it a sliding scale down from him. The problem is all the little things that you can do to play the game, the politics in the organization, the project you might be stuck on, and a multitude of other things. What if you have a spineless manager who cannot make the case ...


6

If your company was willing to make changes before to keep you around, they will probably be willing to do that again. Make a list of what you hate about your company, and how you would like to see it fixed. Bring it to your supervisors attention. Try and be diplomatic... you don't want to come across as "I'll quit if you don't fix these problems" (even ...


6

If you provide significant functionality updates, then probably the "UltraEdit way" is best, if, however, your program is more-or-less feature-complete (think WinRAR or the like, which use a similar model) then the "TotalCommander way" is probably better.


5

A very different formula to those already posted, used with great success by some people, is price = whatever you think the customer is willing to pay at most Obviously, this formula contains a variable that is hard to determine, but I've seen cases where a customer was willing to pay €800 for a task that hardly takes an hour to complete. And similar ...


5

Maybe not anymore, at least not in Europe (particularly in Switzerland, where I live). Many people pay for their apps on the iPhone. If an app costs as little as 1-2$ many people don't think twice before buying it..


5

If you already have reviews, don't stop them without making clear why. Stopping reviews can imply there will be a layoff coming so there isn't any need to waste time on them. I thought so at a startup I worked for and I was right.


5

If the company requested/asked you to learn the Framework, then there is no question of being unethical to spend entire working day learning it. However, you should be aggressive to get a grasp of it fast so you can start to develop production code as early as possible. Since you are involved in a Startup with only two of you as programmer, for the benefit ...


5

I'll go with the UltraEdit way, with a discount on renewal for already paying users. How much time will you pass developing new functionalities ? If a user already paid for the "base" version, doesn't it makes sense to ask them to pay a little extra if they want more features you worked on ? (without asking them to pay for something they already have) Of ...



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