[Osmf-talk] Budget for 2016

Andy Allan gravitystorm at gmail.com
Fri May 6 15:01:44 UTC 2016

On 5 May 2016 at 16:29, Matthias-Christian Ott <ott at mirix.org> wrote:

> I think it has been discussed sufficiently how to cover one time
> expenses like purchasing new hardware and how to deal with unforeseeable
> events.

About 5 years ago I used to think of purchasing hardware as a "one off
event" that we could control - and most importantly, if cash was short
then we could avoid purchasing anything. But I don't see it like that
any more.

The OWG spends a small amount of money on like-for-like replacements,
mostly disks and RAM, at about £2,200 in 2015. But we need to keep
expanding our server resources to cope with the rise of OSM - if we
want to just keep today's hardware for 3-4 years, we'd need to stop
mapping (e.g. to stop the db from growing), ensure this no increase in
visitors to openstreetmap.org (e.g. to stop the load on the
tileservers from increasing) and so on. Given that OSM keeps
increasing, hardware expenditure isn't discretionary.

Instead it's better to think of the annual hardware expenditure as a
"recurring cost", just the same way as hosting and domain registration
fees. Last year had surprisingly low hardware costs since we were
delayed in buying one big-ticket item. This year will be a significant
increase. But averaged over a couple of years, we should be meeting
our hardware costs from a more stable income stream than occasional
big fund-raising drives.

Looking at it this way, our membership and regular (unsolicited)
donations are a long way short from covering our operating needs.


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