In my $life, I raise money from sponsors.
It is not difficult to spend money, once you have it.
It is not difficult to raise money, once you know how to spend it wisely.
What's difficult is putting the two together.
Some donors know what to contribute to - they choose specific projects
Some donors want to help achieve a general aim - they give to a
foundation that will wisely spend the money for them (eg. Warren Buffet
giving gazillions to Bill Gate's foundation).
Any sponsorship program should enable both ear-marked and general
contributions (and I am certain if the paper-work's done right, this can
be achieved within TPF).
To be frank, the ONLY reasonable systematic way of managing a
sponsorship process is to have a Foundation, and the foundation should
have people who are trusted, who already have contributed to the
process, and who are prepared to report back on how the money has been
spent. The Perl Foundation meets these criteria.
If you spend time on administration, you are using resources, in just
the same way as programmers hacking on the code. So if the officers of
the Foundation are paid for their efforts, that is acceptible so long as
the payments are commensurate with resources spent in other directions.
It is not a mathematical formula, its a question of balance and fairness
No one likes bureacracy. But I feel much happier about handing over
money, or persuading someone else to hand over money, to a group of
people with established procedures and collective responsibility, than
to some enthusiatic individual who promises the earth and whose the
world-number-one genius at code writing, but might also go and blow the
whole lot on girls and booze cos his cat died.
Whilst debating issues like parrot vs pugs, or single-track vs parellel
track development, can be quite interesting, especially if it induces
Larry to compare straight lines to mountains and railroads, it is likely
to be more useful to have suggestions like chromatic's - 1month of
dedicated work for $5000.
How about adding a page to one of the web sites where offers of help,
time and expense, can be made?
The micro-grants idea is great. What I have seen of the results and
reporting is fine. More grants, more people, and more results are
needed. How about everyone reading this thread thinking about a
micro-project they can do.
Finally, there needs to be recognition for the sponsors, both those that
donate their talent resources such as volunteer designer, implementors,
& hackers, and those that donate just cash.
How about a mandatory section of text at the top of each core and
sponsored module that lists the sponsors? Just like license text. That
way all contributors are recognised when/if perl6 becomes the
predominant programming environment, those names become distributed
around the world.