I've been thinking about the future of MP3 Cat for a while.
It's been more than a year since I've done some real work on it, and my lack of motivation is due to several reasons:
- I don't actually need more features for my personal use: the whole project started out to fullfil a need I had, which I've accomplished after a few releases. Afterwards, all I've been implementing were requests by users.
- The giftware license has been largely misinterpreted (most sites which list MP3 Cat report "freeware" as license) or ignored. I'm grateful to those who did send a gift: it's also thank to them if from time to time I've released a new version, typically prepared right after receiving a parcel from Amazon ;-)
- I don't have much spare time to spend on this project just for the sake of it. When I started MP3 Cat back in the year 2000, I had much more free time, being a student then ;-)
- The internal architecture of MP3 Cat badly needs a refactoring to implement some asked for features, such as saving the categories in the DB in order not to loose them should you reinstall the system or open the DB on a different machine, being able to keep multiple search results windows open, and so on. Adding such features requires time.
So, what now?
I see two possible outcomes from this situation:
- Abandon the project, change the license of the latest and last release to Freeware. This means no more support, no more bugfixes, no more releases.
- Change the license to Shareware, rewrite what's needed to implement the new features I've mentioned before (and more) and release MP3 Cat 2.0. It'll be a time-limited trial version and it would cost more or less 15-20 EUR (depending on the amount of new features I'll implement). If it becomes an income source, I'm sure my motivation will be back soon enough ;-)
I still haven't reached a decision though. Even if I chose the second option, I'd like to know in advance if there's a slight chance it'll be the right one: it would be a pity to release v2.0 and then immediately abandon it because noone buys a license ;-)
To conclude, I'm asking you MP3 Cat users what you think about everything I've just said.
Should it be the red or the blue pill?
[Updated: follow up]