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26876  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Nominations for DonationCoder's Top 10 New Programs & Websites of the Year. on: December 22, 2005, 05:23:50 AM
just adding a note here - we were talkng in the donationcoder irc chat channel (see "IRC CHAT" button above) that it would be a fun thing if at the start of 2006 we put out a little guide in the new year listing the top 10 new programs and websites that came out in 2005.

so everyone please help us come up with this top 10 list and we will put together a little feature on this in january 2006.

please list:
  • name of program or website
  • the website url
  • the date that it went public (which must be sometime in 2005)
  • a description of it and the reason you think it qualifies.

nominate as many as you want.  we know there are TONS of great apps that have been around for a while, but this list is only meant to highlight new stuff.
26877  DonationCoder.com Software / Screenshot Captor / Re: Request : mouse pointer shadow on: December 22, 2005, 03:13:22 AM
maybe this issue needs clarification:
1) screenshot captor has an option to capture the cursor and display it.
2) as stefan points out, it's often more useful to not capture it, but add a cursor as an object afterwards, which lets you move it, resize it, and give it a shadow.  screenshot captor comes with a whole directory full of various cursor objects for this purpose.
3) i was suggesting the best of both worlds, ie capture cursor location and auto add a cursor object at the appropriate place.
26878  News and Reviews / Official Announcements / Re: Change to Official License Key Policy on: December 22, 2005, 01:48:15 AM
hahaha -
being against license keys is not being against this site.  no one here has to agree in lock step with everything we do.

the license keys are an inconvenience.  no doubt about it.  and it makes sense that those good souls who would donate to the site regardless would tend to think that they are overkill.

the real question, and its an empirical question, is to what extent would donations and participation on the forum drop off if we stopped using license keys.

my speculation is that it would drop off a bit, but how much i do not know.

i actually think that the people who are complaining about the license keys and say they would donate only if we didn't have such a thing are probably fooling themselves.

but that's not to say that there aren't benefits that would come from removing the license keys, worth considering.

it seems to me that we should answer this question, both for ourselves, and as a way of answering a question that other donationware authors would probably like to have answered.

so i suggest that sometimes in the next few months (maybe timed to our 1 year aniversary in march or april), we conduct a survey and spend a month  having either no license keys needed anymore, or else letting people sign up and get an immediate non-expiring permanent license key.  it seems to me we don't have that much to lose other than a months worth of user donations, and it would be a fair price to pay to get a better understanding of how the license key system helps or hurts.
26879  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Funny/interesting websites I like... check these out if you're bored on: December 22, 2005, 01:35:53 AM
great post.  i'd like to see more of these lists of people's favorite sites.

ps. i believe the onion is the funniest fake newspaper ever written.
26880  DonationCoder.com Software / Find And Run Robot / Re: What's the correct abbreviation? on: December 21, 2005, 04:19:13 PM
it's an interesting question;
i think it might be overkill for normal find+run searching, but i can see two related things:
1) supporting such stuff in a non-default file search mode.
2) supporting being able to define a specific alias search which specified a bunch of search strings like you have described, which could be run via a command of some sort.
26881  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: an idea: sponsoring an open source smf (simlemachines.org forum) mod or two on: December 21, 2005, 04:17:00 PM
that's quite nice.. now i see why people like vbulletin so much.
26882  DonationCoder.com Software / Screenshot Captor / Re: Request : mouse pointer shadow on: December 21, 2005, 09:37:58 AM
interesting idea..

i wonder if i could have screenshot captor capture the location of the cursor and dynamically insert a cursor "object" that could then be moved around, hiddent, given a shadow, etc.  it's a possibility.. not sure how hard it would be yet. i'll look into it.  might want to submit an official bug/feature request using the "bugtracker" button above so i don't forget smiley
26883  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / an idea: sponsoring an open source smf (simlemachines.org forum) mod or two on: December 21, 2005, 07:52:28 AM
we've discussed on this forum a couple mods to the smf forum that would be nice to have; i've written some custom stuff for smf but i was thinking that maybe we should try to have a kind of contest or something to sponsor some smf mod programmer who was interested in creating an open source mod that we would particularly like.  the mod would be made available as a normal open source smf mod, the only thing we'd be doing is offering a little reward to the person who worked on it because its something we would find useful.

the most immediate one i can see a use for is an integration with media wiki and the bug tracking program (mantis), so that users would only use one login for all three.  but nudone also suggested a "bookmark" type mod that might be nice.

prizes for the coder could include a copy of vmware, a dc shirt, maybe some other software?

26884  News and Reviews / Official Announcements / Re: Change to Official License Key Policy on: December 21, 2005, 07:35:07 AM
the tricky part about all this is there are different kinds of people:
  • some are freeware purists - they wont download anything that has even the smallest thing that deviates from norm.  if the software was designed so that after 100 years of daily use it popped up a single message once that said "please consider a donation", and never came up again - these people would boycot the program loudly.  they'd rather use a program 1000x more inferior that causes them to spend an hour extra a day fighting with bugs in the program than use the other program.
  • others are, just as bad, payware purists - these people will not use any software that they don't have to buy, and the more expensive the better.  they would sooner pay $400 for a never-updated, zero support piece of junk than use a freeware program that has the best reputation for support and is 100x more reliable and powerful.
  • and most people are donation-phobic.  these are the people we are trying to reach.  people who are open to the idea of donating to support good software, but are reluctant and need a little convincing/motivation.
26885  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: duh, how do i get this to work? on: December 21, 2005, 07:00:14 AM
there has been a discussion of bookmarking addon for simplemachines forum but i haven't found a good one yet.

if anyone finds any good ones let us know.
26886  News and Reviews / Official Announcements / Re: Change to Official License Key Policy on: December 21, 2005, 06:31:59 AM
Is there any evidence that requiring licenses actually makes any difference to fund raising or participation? It is sobering to see how many people sign up to the site (presumably to get a license key) but then don't want to participate.

this is *the* question to ask.  because if the answer is that it only makes a small difference, then we should remove the license key stuff immediately.

there are clear disadvantages of using license keys, including added complexity, and some inevitable confusion and frustration from users.

so the question is, do the benefits of it offset these drawbacks.

as you say, the purpose of requiring license keys is:
  • to get people involved in the site; by signing up at the forum for a license key it means they have already taken the time to sign up at the forum, and so participation should be easier and less effort after that.
  • to get them to visit the site and look around, and unless they choose not to, to receive a newsletter every few weeks telling them whats new and hopefully keeping them informed about the site so they don't forget to visit.
  • through 1+2+ the small inconveniences of having to use non-member license keys, to motivate those who are willing to donate to actually go through with it.

the hard part is actually determining how much it is really helping these aims.

we've made clear that none of the procedures are set it stone, and i'm not wedded to using license keys at all if they are, on the whole, counter productive.

anyone have any suggestions as to how we could make such an assessment?

i can think of a few things we could try:
  • conduct a serious poll of people who have donated so far (and really try to emphasize how important it is for people to take the poll and answer truthfully), and ask these people if they think they would have donated if there was no license key thing or requirement to sign up.
  • conduct a poll of people who have posted on the forum at least once to vote in a poll about whether they think they would be participating if they hadn't had to sign up at the forum.
  • maybe we shouuld consider making a real 1 page survey (not a simple poll) that asked some other questions that would be useful to know the answers to, like feelings about donationware, how people would like to see website evolve, etc.
  • spend a couple of months releasing versions that don't use license keys of any sort, and see what changes we seen in donations, forum discussions, etc.

some options for future changes:
  • remove all license key use
  • or allow people to sign up at forum and then get full non-expiring license keys like all members do.
  • or keep things basically the way they are now
26887  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: duh, how do i get this to work? on: December 21, 2005, 05:15:18 AM
ok, i think i can help a little.

the checkbox marked "Receive forum announcements and important notifications by email."
that's the one that governs whether you get the newsletter, etc.

the section titled "Current Board Notifications
You aren't receiving notifications on any boards right now."

is used when you mark a SPECIFIC thread/post as one you want to be notified about when someone replies.
so basically while you are reading the forum if you find a thread/post you are interested in, you click the notify button (see below) and it will add it to your list of posts to notify you about.  at least that's the theory.  the other options just affect details of how to handle your notify list.

26888  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / Re: great apps to put on your USB stick on: December 21, 2005, 05:10:10 AM
don't forget this site : http://portablefreeware.com/

even though they weren't exactly understanding of donationcoder.com (see http://www.donationcoder....um/index.php?topic=1784.0) they still seem like a good site with their heart in the right place.
26889  News and Reviews / Official Announcements / Re: Change to Official License Key Policy on: December 21, 2005, 05:06:40 AM
just an update from portablefreeware.com which was mentioned earlier in the thread.
i've spoken to the admin of the site.  he was very nice but decided that in his opinion the software here does not meet their definition of freeware and is instead nagware, even with the new more liberal license key policy.  not a big deal, just giving you an update.  he also suggested that we try to clarify the fact that people will need to download a license key and he might be right about that, so it's something to look into.

another idea that i thought of is, we could make it so that every program stops all nags and any need for a license key at all after 1 year of it's release date.  in other words, all releases over a year old become pure old fashioned no-key-required freeware.

Personally it's hard to understand why people wouldnt want to go through the super minimal effort of generating a freeware license key from our site, BUT, this would also satisfy any worries people might have about finding themselves one day without a useable program if they can't download a key for some reason.

some shareware programs give out older versions of their soft as freeware, this would be like that, except all versions are free, and this would be autamatic process whereby all releases cease needing license keys after 1 year.

the downsides would be:
1) need to keep around older releases for people to download
2) added complexity of explaining yet another option
26890  Special User Sections / Site/Forum Features / New Newsletter Subsection of the Forum on: December 21, 2005, 04:26:27 AM
We've started making the twice-monthly newsletters available online now, in their own special subsection of the forum.
That way they are archived and always available, and the email mailings will only contain a brief summary of the contents.

URL for the new Newsletter section:

You can also subscribe to an RSS feed for the Newsletter section by using this url:
26891  DonationCoder.com Software / Find And Run Robot / Re: What's the correct abbreviation? on: December 21, 2005, 03:57:40 AM
the real answer is, when naming programs, a lesson i wish i had learned earlier is: dont user the word AND in them, it only brings you trouble.  it's hard to search for and hard to abbreviate.
26892  News and Reviews / Mini-Reviews by Members / Re: The GodFather - Audio File Manager with Scripting on: December 21, 2005, 03:39:06 AM
let's not forget that elsewhere on this forum there have been extremely rave reviews for another freeware mp3 tag tool, mp3tag:
26893  DonationCoder.com Software / Clipboard Help+Spell / Re: Request : 10 last clip in the CHS icon context menu on: December 21, 2005, 02:49:55 AM
that's a very good idea, i'll add it to todo list.
26894  DonationCoder.com Software / Mircryption / Re: mircryption working with gaim as an irc client (and maybe also for chat...) on: December 21, 2005, 01:02:41 AM
it's not something i have time for currently; however as you know mircryption is open source and i'd be more than happy to try to help out anyone who wanted to try to use it to make a gaim addon.
26895  Main Area and Open Discussion / Living Room / Re: Samorost - beautiful puzzles on: December 21, 2005, 12:51:16 AM
cliff, you're always welcome to excerpt anything i write on the forum for use in your newsletter+wiki as long as there's a link back to the original.
26896  Main Area and Open Discussion / General Software Discussion / 2006 Independent Games Festival - Student Showcase Entrants on: December 21, 2005, 12:43:40 AM

past winnners on that page too - might make for some fun discoveries.
26897  Special User Sections / Activation/License/Language Help / Re: Wecome - READ THIS FIRST! on: December 20, 2005, 11:09:57 PM
mhshore, you can download license keys from this page: http://www.donationcoder.com/Keys/index.php

(also, if you've donated to the site you should have received an email with information about how to upgrade your account to charter member).
26898  DonationCoder.com Software / Dr.Windows / Re: Sorry, I don't approve on: December 20, 2005, 11:04:18 PM
yeah, i hear ya..
this was a one time little joke app, it's not the kind of thing we'll be doing much of in the future.

the only real defense i have is that if this is the worst program someone uses to pull a prank on you, you probably got off easy.

i do hope though that no one uses this to aggravate others.

only use in close supervision of prank target so as to avoid any confusions!
26899  News and Reviews / Older Newsletters / Re: Newsletter 2005-12-20 - Codename "brotherS gets it going" on: December 20, 2005, 06:27:09 PM
i agree with everyone - i love the new online newsletter format.  was a great idea brotherS.
26900  DonationCoder.com Software / Screenshot Captor / Re: Preferences not saved on: December 20, 2005, 06:01:33 PM
ill have a fix this week; for now the work around is simply to fully exit the program from the tray and your settings will be saved; it's only the reboot or windows shutdown that is causing it to fail to save any setting changes.
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