Let's all pitch in and make a list of the top ten apps/programs that are most needed for Linux/OpenSource and then everyone find a way to drop some cash into the hat. We'll use the cash to offer a 'bounty' for the programmer(s) who submit a working, usable solution for one of the top ten list.
We'll talk to the "Big Boys" out there and try to get them to participate as well. The more cash we put in the hat, the bigger the bounty we can offer.
This is done in science with the "X Prize", why can't we do it with software too?
If "Software Bounty Hunters" could put together even a couple thousand dollars, that might be enough to catch the interest of some of these wayward and bored programmers looking for a little scratch cash.
Heck, once the ball got rolling,the app could be made an OpenSource project in it's own right or maybe taken in by one of the "Big Boys" Like Novell, IBM, RedHat, who knows and added to their 'paid' roles for development. They do it all the time, buy up a little guys project because it beats out anything the Big boys can put out. Why innovate when you have the money to buy it? Right?
The winning entries to claim the cash would have to be tested and proven first. Make sure it meets GPL and all other legal gobbledygook standards.
It could be like "Americas Most Wanted" except it would be "OpenSources Most Wanted", and you can claim the reward for turning in the best software.
How much do we want new software, especially software we all say Linux/OpenSource needs but no one is actively developing it because no one is showing the green?
I would pony up for something like this, think if 200 people put up $10.00 each. We have a viable cash reward of $2,000 off the bat.
If more than 200 people put up $10 or more on an ongoing basis, we could build an ongoing sustained "bounty" base for new and upcoming challengers.
Something to think about anyway huh?