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I've long ago lost count of how many projects/mods/addons/utilities I've seen die over the years. This is sad, but understandable. Life happens.

However, in at least 9 out of every 10 cases I've encountered, it's gone forever, because the source code was never released. This permadeath is tragic, preventable, and thus completely unacceptable.

In this modern digital age, we face these facts:

  1. Free hosting
  2. Cheap storage
  3. Easy mirroring
  4. Crowdfunding
  5. Crowdsourcing

If people like your work enough, they'll continue it even if you abandon it. Worst case scenario your source code will be forgotten which is regrettable; best case scenario it will continue on as if you were still working on it. Most likely is somewhere in between; if it's good work, someone will at least use some of your code at some point.

But they can't do this if your code doesn't exist.

This has even happened with the source code for AAA titles and large franchise-level software. In such cases, eventually it will become something like abandonware, only for the original developer(s) to discover that the source code is/was lost and no one can find it. Bummer.

So the next time you're working on a free (or even paid) project/mod/addon/utility, remember to post the source code somewhere. It's in everyone's best interest.

The time and energy required to collect, maintain, and post source code is more than worth it. I promise. Plus, it's just the right thing to do.

If you're concerned about copyrights or intellectual property, look it up and educate yourself on the law. Excuses such as "yeah but copyright" or "it's my intellectual property" or "it takes effort" or "no one would want the source anyway" are invalid.

Even if part of your software legitimately cannot be released because it involves copyright or IP of a 3rd party, you should at least be able to release the portions you wrote that don't include this 3rd-party code.

Protip:

If you've never posted source code before, start using git and GitHub. It's a great way to learn about repositories and version control systems. Being able to track incremental changes in your source code is very cool.

Bottom Line:

Abandoning a project is understandable and acceptable.

Killing a project permanently by withholding the source code is not.

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Comments
mick3
mick3

Thanks for Fallout mod.

Reply Good karma Bad karma+2 votes
Sduibek Creator
Sduibek

You're welcome, and thanks for playing it! :D

Reply Good karma+2 votes
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