Removing support service

30 Dec 2011 · by David DeSandro

Metafizzy is now one year old.

Back when I began, I decided to add a support service for Masonry and Isotope. At the time, I would receive several requests for help each week. While I'd like to think I am a nice guy, there was little incentive for me to help these requesters, aside from open-source guilt. The support license was a measure to resolve this. I would get paid for efforts. And requesters would be vetted. No more freeloaders.

It was also a matter of pride. I felt obligated to users that they deserved proper support for using (and financially supporting) my resources. I've found answers on Stack Overflow to be disappointing. As Stack Overflow answers rank high on Google, these "solutions" then propagate through the developer realm. By helping others, I could help myself, preventing poor solutions from growing virally.

Having that support system in place has been beneficial to the development of Isotope. Options have been added and source code has been improved all because a requester had a problem that identified a weak point.

But this improvement in code has come at the expense of personal man-hours. Each morning for the past 10 months, slouched over a bowl of cereal, I could expect to find several new requests for support. Resolving each of those requests is a mini-project all of itself, with individual complexities and peculiarities that require care and attention. The workload was manageable, but I just didn't have the heart to keep it going.

I was skeptical about starting a support service in the first place. I am happy that I gave it a try, that I was able to help my users, and improve my resources. But I have big plans for 2012. In order to create a resource like Isotope, I am going to need the hours and availability I had when I created Isotope. So it's time to close this chapter of Metafizzy, in order to start writing the next.

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