First of all let me say to everyone who has participated on the site over the last 4 years, that it's been my real pleasure and honor to meet and talk to all of you. This website has been the highlight of my life during that time. I don't expect everyone to feel that way, but I hope you at least feel like the site has brightened your day a little, once or twice.
to visit the donation page.
It's never easy asking for money (that's why I've avoided running a fundraiser for 2 years), but that time has come where we need to raise some extra cash to help pay for our hosting costs and other expenses, and to help fund future projects.
Donations to the site from ordinary people have made all the difference in the world. They have made it possible for this site to remain advertisement free and pay for a now pretty heavy duty pair of web servers that run us almost $6000 a year in hosting costs.
Thinking back to the early days of the site when we were running off a $20/month shared hosting plan brings a real smile to my face. We are currently serving about 30gb of traffic and a million hits each and every day. I think that's pretty remarkable.
It was money from donations that made it possible for us to send dozens of mugs and shirts out as rewards for people who participated in the last freeware programming challenge we had. It's true we can't afford to send out giant monetary prizes like the big companies do, but we are proud of what we do, and proud of where our money comes from. For me personally, the donations make it possible for me to spend more time working on the website and software for the site, and interacting with users; and I can't think of anything I'd rather be doing.
Most of all, donations have made it possible for this site to stay true to itself, and have made being part of the site something I think everyone involved in can be proud of and feel good about.
If you've already donated to the site and are not in a position to donate again -- don't think twice about it, we're grateful for your support.
But if you've not yet donated, or can spare a little more, permit me, on behalf of site, to ask you to take the trouble to make a donation now
. I can promise you that we will put it to good use as we work hard to make this site even better in the coming year.
Cody (our bird/duck mascot) has insisted I tell people that if they cannot make monetary donations, he would be happy to receive chocolate coins in gold foil wrappers, or else hand drawn pictures of himself to hang on his wall.