From what I can tell, the creator of laravel has released a framework for laravel called Spark. Spark is similar to meteor ( in that spark tries to save time and money by providing stuff out of the box like authentication, payment systems, user systems, etc.).
He is charging $99 for a perpetual license… so pay $99 once, and create as many projects as you want (I think).
What do meteor folks think of this?
The Open Source Religion
There are a lot of “open source zealots” who buy into the open source philosophy without every questioning it. Their reasoning seems to be that everything should be free and the more free that things are, the better they are. But are there others who are more open minded to a model like spark?
To me, this model makes much more sense then having companies like MDG give the framework away for free, and then try to make money on ancillary products (galaxy, consulting, etc.)…
The spark model directly aligns the incentives of developers who use the framework, with the team who is creating the framework.
The more time, effort and features you add to the framework, the more money your “framework company” will make. You also have a huge incentive to listen to the needs of developers who use your framework, and to act on that feedback ASAP…
Compare the above to the current “Open Source + Ancillary Revenue” model that MDG (and basically 99.9% of the industry use), which creates a situation where the framework creators are constantly scrambling to find a solid business model that is usually on vaguely tied to the framework. They end up spending the majority of their time and money building ancillary products and services, rather than focusing 100% on building out the framework, taking in pull-requests from contributors, and just generally trying to make the framework awesome.
Many frameworks end up asking for donations or patreon accounts anyway! Which is basically a half-ass backwards way of going about Sparks much more professional and organized strategy… with this “Spark Model”, there is no more praying that the creator of the framework you use is “raising enough beer money from his paypal button” or that he suddenly decides he needs to take on more consulting work and leaves the repo to wilter.
The Downside of Open Source that Never Gets Mentioned
For some reason, these very real, very common downsides of open source never seem to get attention. They are just taken as a given. Nobody ever asks if the overall cost may outweigh the benefits… and remember, Spark is $99 dollars. We’re talking a difference of Free vs $99… that price is so low it’s virtually open source, but DRASTICALLY reduces the risks and DRASTICALLY increases the quality/satisfaction for developers.
As a new developer coming to the industry with an open mind, and applying some economics 101, I think the spark model would result in much happier developers and a healthier “framework company” than current “open source” models.
What do you think?