Herr Bischoff

Hacker News and Donations

Today I noticed that at some time yesterday, one of my projects gathered interest on Hacker News.


User “anigbrowl” made an astute observation, in response to my personal note at the beginning of the document:

It’s unseemly that people have to beg like this. I would be happy to pay a small annual Github subscription if it were distributed back to repo maintainers. Same thing with all the ‘buy me a coffee’ tags and now the ‘buy me a slice of pizza’ ones.

I don’t intend to beg and don’t think the paragraph should be read as such. After years of experience with project funding, it’s a summary of the state of things, the facts of the matter. Nothing more, nothing less.

It points to the larger issue anigbrowl raises though:

Instead of funding useful bodies of work with meaningful micro-grants you have projects competing to provide people with better cups to rattle.

Well, that’s late-stage capitalism for you. It’s the majority of the Hacker News crowd. That’s the predictable result of current market incentives. There’s more money in providing the means of raising funds (and taking a cut of course) than fundraising itself. It’s the Uber model.

The predictable result of a popular HN submission was a flood of traffic. At the very least it taught me to look into Nginx FastCGI caching for cgit.

For some time now, I’m financially strained to a degree that existential fears set in. There are many reasons for this, all too complex to elaborate on in a post about Hacker News.

I will likely be broke sometime next spring. I am unable to work for more than a couple of hours a day and have no prospects, no plan for the future. It’s possible I will have to start working for minimum wage as long as my mental state allows for, just to subsist.

Anyway, like I state in the introduction to my little project, that’s entirely my issue to have and problem to solve.


The list of commands and information isn’t critical at all, probably for anyone. It’s just interesting to observe that for all the public comments (and some press) it has received over time, I haven’t received so much as a single email of thanks in years.

For all the pointed remarks, anigbrowl, of course, didn’t donate as well. How do I know? Because no donations were made at all.

Update: I have now received two donations. I can afford to buy some veggies.