Features On Demand Features On Demand

Concepts of getting right things done right

This chapter describes how new Ideas become real with Cotonti. One of the basic concepts is called «Features On Demand» which is also supplemented with another one called «Invest!».

You could probably suppose that there is some strong solid general line of motion which it follows from one version to another. That is right. It is called Roadmap and you can read it just by following a link. But how do features get into Roadmap? How does the Team decide what is worth implementing and what is not? What encourages developers to implement them? This is what we are talking about.

In fact it is very simple to understand how it works if you can imagine a democratic community. Everyone can suggest an idea and everyone has suffrage. We welcome ideas, solutions, improvements and any opinion or detail on them. Got a proposal? Post it in our Forum!

Then comes the time to determine each point of the suggestion and learn what benefits it has, how urgent it is, how many people would need it, how much effort it would cost and the best way it can be implemented. It is an open discussion and everyone can tell his pro/cons. If every single vote was equal or could block all the others, it would result into either bedlam or a deadlock. That is why there are people in the community who are allowed to make decisions. They do not resist public opinion, they just make conclusions and direct the brainstorm towards consistent and visible actions.

Let's assume that an idea has been detailed into solid project, accepted by Coordinators and added to the Roadmap/Task list. There is a Team and there are developers who have skills to implement it. So, it works fine to get things done.

No, it doesn't. Yes, there are people interested in it and probably someone will do it just for himself and for common property. Also, third-party contributions can be made and accepted into the main branch. But many many projects face this problem: lack of time which a developer has to spend on other things. Though, he can be motivated if there is enough feedback and support from the community. And here comes what we call «Invest!».

If you are an individual or represent a company which is interested in some feature to be implemented into the core package or a third-party plug-in and would like to encourage the specialists from Cotonti Team to implement it as soon as possible, you can invest into the feature or addition. Of course you could also go to Bazaar or Jobs section and order it exclusively. In many cases it would be right decision. But if the feature makes an advantage for the entire Cotonti project and community in general, it would be more correct to invest into the feature to be implemented for everyone. At that, not being alone with such a fine gesture, your input would be put together with others and result into a kind of confidence, that things eventually get done.

Here is how «Cotonti Invest!» works actually:
  1. All the Ideas, after they have been discussed and accepted, are called Projects or Tasks. Every Task/Project has its priority depending on such things as urgency, benefits, frequency, ease, etc.
  2. An Investor decides to invest some sum of money into exact Idea.
  3. He sends it to Cotonti Foundation with one of available payment methods (Wire transfer, PayPal, e-Gold, WebMoney, etc.) and necessarily supplies it with the link to the topic of the Idea he invests into (in comments for the payment or via private message to a Foundation agent).
  4. After Foundation agent (secretary) receives a payment, he gives the Task a higher priority and tells to the Team members that the Idea has been sponsored (if the Task hasn't been assigned yet) or tells it to the person the task is assigned to (if the work is already in progress). The report is sent back to the Investor of course.
  5. After the Idea has been implemented, all the investments on it are distributed among executives according to their input (actual work).
The Investor should also tell whether he wants to see his name in the list of sponsors for that feature in Changelog for next public release or if he wants to stay incognito.

Investments can be made into Cotonti project in general, it works like well known Donations:
  1. An Investor donates as sum to Cotonti Foundation.
  2. The sum is distributed among Tasks according to task priorities.
  3. The rest is the same as with «Invest!» list above.

If you are a developer, you will be able to withdraw your money when the next payment period comes (usually it is right after regular public release). It is done so to be sure that things are done at high quality (not in a rush for quick money) and to save money on transfers (small sums are usually unprofitable to transfer).

To sum things up, let's show what «Features On Demand» and «Cotonti Invest!» give to everyone:
  • To Visitors of Cotonti-powered websites: new features, better usability, security and comfort.
  • To Webmasters running Cotonti-powered websites: more abilities, more visitors, more profit.
  • To Companies who use Cotonti in their business: reach your goals, satisfy your needs, get quality results.
  • To Developers working on Cotonti project: get paid for your work, focus more on the project, get respect or even make a career in open source software
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