Ardour seeks new sponsorship

This story was edited on January 25th for clarity

Ardour is looking for new project sponsors after our major contributor, Solid State Logic informed us that they would no longer be able to continue the financial support they gave to Ardour during 2006.

Ardour is at an exciting point in its development: version 2.0 is about to released very shortly, and more and more developers have recently started contributing to the project. Once version 2.0 is released, we have a large list of substantial new features waiting to be added, including MIDI recording and playback (already implemented as part of our participation in Google's Summer of Code). New work to add support for Mackie/Logic Control surfaces is already substantially completed.

However, despite the growing number of developers and the excitement of a 2.0 release, Ardour will not keep moving forward at an acceptable pace without at least one developer focused full time on it, and the end of SSL's funding will have a significant impact in this area. Paul Davis, Ardour's lead developer and founder, was paid entirely by SSL and is now seeking other ways of allowing him to continue working on Ardour as well as JACK.

We welcome continuing contributions via the Paypal link up there on the right. However, we are also in an urgent search for corporations or orther organizations that see the long term value of Ardour as part of the audio technology environment. If you or your organization are interested in helping to establish and support a non-profit foundation dedicated to ensuring Ardour's continuing development, please get in touch with Paul.

Comments

This is definitely not good. I will spread the word.
Digg seems like a good place.

I propose a boycott of SSL products from here on in, and making sure we all send them an email telling them of our disapproval. It probably won't change any decision of theirs, but if there was enough of us it would certainly make them realise it was a bad one!

Sorry to hear about it Paul...I like the idea of a pledge page as proposed on the mailing list. I would definitely give $10-20 if I knew 500-1000 other people would as well. It's hard to make a donation of $50-100, not knowing if is really gonna make a difference and whether or not the project will go stale.

There's no way this project can go stale.. My heart would turn to dust.

Ardour/Ardour2 is by far the best piece of software I've used for my music on Linux. I have used it faithfully. If this project seized to exist I wouldn't know what to do. MuSE is ok, but IMO is nothing compared to Ardour. Moving to Windows just isn't an option for me either. MacOS would be nice however I've become way to comfortable with Ardour to think of moving on to something else. I'm sure there are MANY people that agree with me on that.

I will donate as much money as I can spare to help keep project alive. The beauty of open source may have to show it's colours soon.

Check out Fundable.org

Fundable has a threshold payment system. This seems like exactly the kind of thing that Fundable was set up for.

This would address the concerns of the poster above, since the donation would only be collected if a certain threshold was met.

This could be set up with donation goals tied to deliverables, like if we collect $5000, that would fund release 2.1 with features X, Y, Z, etc.

I picked up a T-shirt a few weeks ago but I would also certainly be willing to throw some loot as well.

I hope others like me that use and value this program are able to step up to help support it.

RE: boycott SSL?

I sent them a polite letter thanking them for the support that they did offer, and expressing my regret that they had stopped funding.

Please don't be rude to these people, it sounds like they have supported the project financially a lot more than I have, and most of us I'm sure.

bad news, really, there's no way ssl is coming back?
... please tell us if this fundable.org thingie can work, i'll give all I can in order to support you, I don't want to have to turn to mac or wundoze for my future works :(

SSL were extremely generous in supporting Ardour on the terms that they did. They are still supportive of the concept of Ardour, and it is possible that they might offer some funding again in the future.

Boycotting SSL would be stupid and vindictive and to be honest very ineffective given that the overwhelming majority of Ardour users will never be users of SSL equipment.

Rather than focus on the past, I want us to focus on the future: new sponsors, a foundation to manage resources and so forth.

This is very very sad to hear. :/

Maybe you can take inspiration from other open source projects like Blender. ( http://www.blender3d.org ) Blender has a full time developer and they get money by donations and blender-eshop (blender books and such).

From the website: "The Blender Foundation currently runs without official offices, but is organized virtually around the world. Revenues from e-shop and publishing enable Ton Roosendaal to work full-time on Blender, organize activities like for Siggraph or the Blender Conference, support development/documention projects, and pay for bookkeeping and administration expenses.
"

I know that Blender's got a different user base and it's definitely bigger...But either way it's interesting.

Maybe one long term solution is to create more user-community features (with tutorials, example demos etc.) on this site to draw attention to new users.

Of course with the assumption that more users == more funding. :)

I definitely agree with your idea. Ardour community in my opinion is pretty strong. I just think they are quiet in terms of speaking up about things. A few people I jammed with a while back invited me to come by and record some tunes. When I arrived I noticed that they were running Ardour on their system with Hydrogen, Jack-Rack, Jamin etc..

I asked them how they liked Ardour and they just laughed and said "how could you not like ardour?".

Perhaps it's not that interesting to read, but it does show that Ardour (IMO) really is taking to the home studio's out there not willing to pay an arm and a leg to just record something good.

User manuals that you can buy and t-shirts is an excellent idea. Problem is finding people willing and have time to create those manuals and t-shirts.
I still think it's doable. In fact I would most certainly be willing to sacrifice some time to help out with anything I am suited to do.

Well, IMO the community of Ardour is strong enough to fund more than one programmer. It all depends on them: if all of them gave monthly $10, it would be a sufficent sum, I guess...

Talking about the T-shirts: I could handle manufacting and shipping in the Czech Republic. That´s in the very middle of Europe, if you didn´t knew ;-) Who will join?

Okay - I just dropped in my first monthly payment of $10.00, I hope people follow. Are t-shirts available anywhere yet???

However, I think this is only a start. Blender is a widely used app in the professional field of 3d modelling, whereas ardour users would be a niche corner of the audio market (at least for the moment). It would be nice if we could support a developer or more ourselves but I think this is wishful thinking. For Paul's sake and our own it's still important to try and find a major sponsor. A major sponsor could also attract more attention and hopefully more professional developers or funding for full time developers.

Some companies that came to mind were;

Behringer - wide support for most of their devices, wide usage amongst linux users and they don't seem to be aligned to any commercial packages (they have audacity for download on their website, and the BCD-2000 seems to be the only device without prospect of drivers or software for linux, macosx seems to be getting there slowly)

Soundcraft - They haven't committed themselves to the digital world yet aside from a few high end mixers but have widespread use amongst home studio users and have an image of professionalism which Ardour would compliment.

Sony - Aside from lack of support on the domestic audio front (atrac format and sonicstage sofware are win only), but with the old PS2 linux dev kit and the enthusiastic promotion of installing linux on a PS3 could mean they have some interest. One of their big angles (at least over here, even though it's not released yet) has been that the PS3 is a serious computer as much as it is a game console, they would love the advertising angle of adver

Korg - The OASYS being on a linux core could mean they have some interest in further integration (imagine netjack out from an OASYS to an ardour box!)

Yamaha - Ok, they haven't been great to Open Source in the past, but their own software probably has less users than ardour and they do like selling "complete" solutions.

Paul, if you are reading this, I'm not really in a position to approach these companies myself (and wouldn't without your go ahead). Nor do I know what approach you prefer to take, however I'm happy to help with proposal drafting.

Allan K
sonofzev
Littlewolf Music
Melbourne Australia

I'm happy to work on an Ardour manual that we are able to sell since Ardour is one of the best audio applications I've worked with. In fact I'm actually planning to sell audio-centred computers with Ardour, etc. And any sales from that I will donate some of the profit to Ardour :D

Also, I wonder if people would be interested if you sell a CD version of Ardour containing builds for OS X and Linux as well as including the manual?

The support Ardour block is great idea! Very nice to use, and it's cool to see my contribution affect the contribution bar so quick!
I do hope that ardour finds a new sponsor, but I just dropped in a contribution.

I am part of community non-profit radio station KRUU-LP. We use Ardour-GTK almost daily. I've been so salivating for version 2 - it's brilliant! I've been holding off on installing it on our production systems until it goes stable, but have been building and testing it out on my home system.

We decided to switch off ProTools (and Windows), and switch completely to a Linux/FreeBSD solution after we test-drove Ardour, and found that Ardour kicked ProTools' ass, and then some! I would hate to see Ardour stop development, since it's one of the best open-source projects I've worked with. It is clean, beautiful, incredibly powerful, and is at least as good as any commercial NLE/DAW that I've seen!

We at KRUU will try our best to promote and financially support this project - it deserves a lot more attention, and a lot more finances.

I wonder if RME (http://www.rme-audio.com/english/index.htm) would be a potential sponsor of the product, since the Hammerfall is a great piece of hardware to run with Ardour. And I vaguely recall that Paul resells the Hammerfall cards.

I am fairly new to the Ardour community but I fully support this great piece of software. As of a few minutes ago, I am the proud owner of a new Ardour T-Shirt and will do what I can to support this great piece of software! A great place to market this software would be at the Winter Music Conference and Ultra Music Festival in Miami Florida. Of course, marketing is probably the last thing on everyone's minds since it costs money and all, but it would be something to think about in the future! I have the means to facilitate this type of movement since I attend this conference year after year...

www.ultramusicfestival.com

!Viva La Ardour!

That's an interesting idea. I'll try to find out whether there would be a posibility of introducing Ardour on the Prague music festival which takes place in the autumn, that would be a huge propagation.. ;-)

RME would be a great choice, if they were up for it (even if they weren't a *major* sponsor, any support from them is good). They have a very good image in professional rings, support Linux to an extent and don't appear to have any financial interest in other DAWs. The only card of theirs that doesn't support linux as far as I know is their firewire one(s).

Maybe it's a stupid idea but , what about Mark Shuttleworth?

I didn't think about that!

That would be brilliant if the Shuttleworth Foundation would sponsor Ardour. I seem to recall reading somewhere they offer up to R250, 000,000 (thats about $34,578,694.95 though i doubt we will get near that :P) for open source projects or something. I think Paul, you should try to contact them because I'm sure they will be interested!

FYI, I already talked to Mark Shuttleworth.

So no deal there? That's a real shame.

Paul would you like to come on The Linux Tech Show to talk about Ardour and plug the donation drive? You and the rest of the team are doing fantastic work and I would hate to see development slow down. Hope my contribution helps. Even if you don't come on the show I'll mention the donation drive.
Take care,

Pat

http://tllts.org - The Linux Link Tech Show

Hi there.
http://www.huvel.cz/?lang=en
That's the web of Music Fair Prague. If I will be successful and if they will be very very kind, I could make a presentation of Ardour there in September 07.

**PEACE**

I have just come across Ardour!!! It can't die before I've worked out how to install linux over windows and try out Ardour!!!! Hehe

Seriously, I've been thinking about switching from Windows to Linux for a while and the only thing stopping me was the fact that I use Nuendo for film sound work in my home studio. Now that I've seen something that looks like it can do the things I need, with a very professional look and, more importantly, is STABLE...but it does it all in Linux and its open source....I'm hooked and I haven't even run it yet.

I am a programmer but I dont know C++ or assembler so I can't help with the app, but I'm willing to help out with manuals, website, etc, etc to keep this going.

Rest assured, some of my aussie $$$ will make its way through Paypal very soon!

Already received a new Ardour T-Shirt in the mail. I must say, that was some great service and I am highly impressed with the quality of the shirt. It's an authentic Hanes T-Shirt with a nice feel to it. I received exactly what I ordered (yellow shirt, blue logo, size Large) and would recommend this product to everyone! Big ups to the shirt designer and to Zazzle for shipping this out so soon!

Have you considered selling CDs? If you can get enough artists to donate good quality songs made with Ardour, maybe you could pack twenty or so onto a CD, then sell that CD for a reasonable price minus only the overhead of manufacturing and shipping it. Maybe you could even go through an online service that manufactures and ships it for you.

Maybe you could strike some sort of deal with Magnatune: http://www.magnatune.com/ - It seems like it would definitely be in their best interest for more people to have access to free Logic/Cubase types of tools, especially if their name was associated with it. I'm not suggesting that you have them fund your project entirely - just that maybe they'd help you out with the CD idea.