Open Source: Who Pays for It?

Recently I worked on my C++ WinReg library for a couple of hours, adding some useful methods, testing them, and packaging the library for vcpkg distribution.

At a reasonable rate of $150/hour, that would be $300.

And that’s not even counting all the many hours I spent in total on this open-source project.

This library has currently more than 260 stars on GitHub, and many forks. It seems to me it is used by many people.

But who pays for it?

I think there should be some process to allow developers of useful open-source code hosted on GitHub (or on other platforms as well) to be fairly compensated for their work.

Reorg of My Blog’s Taxonomies

Initially, I used categories as the only taxonomy to group my blog posts together based on their content.

More recently, I discovered that, in addition to categories, WordPress offers also tags. Actually, I initially thought of categories just like tags, but after some research on the Internet, I figured out there’s a difference between these taxonomies.

So, it’s been quite a while I wanted to reorganize my blog taxonomies, following the advice I read in several places to reduce the number of categories, and adding tags for finer-grained and cross-category classifications.

I spent a fair amount of time thinking about this taxonomy reorg for my blog, and re-tagging all the existing posts, and finally I was able to reduce the number of categories from the initial 19 to just 6.

In particular, I “moved” several previous categories (like Bugs, PerformanceATL, STL, Unicode, Pluralsight, etc.) to tags. Two important categories now are C++, which groups topics related to the C++ language and standard library, and Windows C++ Programming, which is focused on the application of C++ to Windows development (for example, think of Win32 C++ programming, ATL, and so on).

I hope this reorg will increase the “information organization” quality of this blog!

Enjoy! 🙂

Interesting Email Course by John Sonmez: “A Blog That Boosts Your Career”

I’m a regular reader of John Sonmez’s blog: Simple Programmer: it’s rich of interesting posts and videos, with valuable insights.

So, when the opportunity arose to subscribe to a series of email lessons about “A blog that boost your career” written by John, I was happy to give it a try.

And, as expected, the emails sent contained high-quality lessons, written in a simple and enjoyable style, typical of John’s writing.

Each email has a good well-balanced amount of text: not too much, not too short. The email style is colloquial and informal, offering a relaxed easygoing reading experience.

Moreover, these email lessons are enriched with several examples, showing ideas and concepts into action.

I like John’s approach of offering a series of practical-oriented lessons: you can read each email and put into practice the suggestions contained there, step-by-step.

It’s also worth noting the fact that John shared some of his negative experiences, offering learning lessons, and saving the reader from wasting time making the same mistakes.

I was also struck by some of John’s notes, for example:

Some of my most successful posts of all time have been blog posts that I almost hit the delete button on because I thought they were utter trash.

In his lessons, John also tends to inspire self-confidence in students. For example, he wrote: “In high school I was in all the advanced classes for math, history, science, etc, but the one area where I was not only not in an advanced class, but I consistently got C’s in was English.”. Well, despite this “sad start”, John wrote his email lessons in a high-quality clear style, probably deserving a good A grade.

And, in addition to his good writing style, the series of suggestions, good pieces of advice and the practical-oriented approach will make subscribing to John’s email course a quality experience for you and a wise way to spend your time.

You can sign up to John’s email course starting from here.


Astronomy Picture of the Day with Windows 7 x64

Michael Dunn developed an interesting Gadget for Browsing the Astronomy Picture of the Day.

However, using the original version published on CodeProject, I failed to install the gadget on Windows 7 x64. (Browsing the comment section, it seems I was not alone.)

Fortunately, source code is available in the download package. The gadget uses an helper COM object, written in C++ with good old VC6. I imported the C++ project in VS2008 and rebuilt for x64 (in fact, to my knowledge, it is impossible to do 64-bit builds using VC6). After repackaging the gadget with the 64-bit COM object, the APOD viewer correctly shows up in Windows 7 x64.

The x64 build is attached to this post.


Hi all!

My name is Giovanni Dicanio, and I’m a Microsoft Visual C++ MVP.

(I received my first VC++ MVP Award on July 1st, 2007.)

The odds are good that I’ll be writing about C++ and Windows programming (and maybe something more) on this blog.

Feel free to contact me using giovanni.dicanio at or gdicanio at e-mail addresses.