Today, I want to share with you my journey and decision to open source my note-taking app, Fleeting Notes. Open sourcing an app is a big step and it can be difficult to let go of control and trust that others will use and improve upon your work in a positive way. But as I've come to realize, trust is a two-way street. If I want others to trust my work, I need to be willing to trust them in return. And that's exactly why I've decided to open source Fleeting Notes.
In this blog post, I'll be discussing the benefits and risks of open sourcing an app, my personal experience with how I came to this decision and how what potential changes this will have on the future of Fleeting Notes. I hope my story can inspire and educate others who may be considering open sourcing their own app.
The most significant benefit for me, above all else, is the opportunity to build trust with the community. I believe that people are more likely to use products that they trust, and in which they trust the product, the developer, and the vision of the company. As the developer of a note-taking app, I understand the personal nature of the information that people store within it, and the level of trust that is needed for users to feel comfortable using it. That is why, I am determined to build this trust from the ground up, and I believe that open sourcing my app is a crucial step in achieving this goal.
- Community engagement: Open sourcing my app allows others to contribute to its development, which can lead to improvements and new features that I may not have thought of. This engagement can also help me to build a community of users and contributors who are invested in the success of my app.
- Increased visibility and credibility: Open sourcing my app can increase my visibility within the developer community, which can help to attract more users and potential collaborators.
- Increased security: With the help of the community, I can find and fix security vulnerabilities more quickly, making my app more secure.
- More Github Benefits: Github provides additional benefits to open-sourced projects (Easier issue reporting, discussions, roadmaps, binary distribution, etc.)
The greatest risk I take with open-sourcing my app is that someone could potentially use my code for their own gain. However, I believe that it would take a significant amount of time, energy and dedication to build a product that surpasses mine. And even if someone did, I would embrace the opportunity to collaborate with them, instead of opposing them.
- Maintenance: Open sourcing my application may increase the maintenance costs as I will have to take care of the codebase, bugs, and updates.
- Bad Code Syndrome: Other people will see my terribly written code and decide not to use my app.
How I came with to the decision of open-sourcing
For a long time, I felt a sense of mistrust while developing my app. I tried to mitigate this by implementing a transparent pricing model, writing a comprehensive , and implementing . Despite these efforts, I still felt an underlying sense of uncertainty when interacting with potential customers.
Recently, I came across a content marketing video by Alex Hormozi that resonated with me. In it, he speaks about the importance of delivering great content. One of his key points is the idea of " "
While watching the video, I drew parallels between this idea and my note-taking app. By giving away a free app and selling the implementation of the syncing service, users have the option to implement their own syncing services, but a good portion of them would rather pay for a service that provides value.
I want to take this concept to the next level by open sourcing the codebase of my app for free and see what comes of it. I firmly believe in the idea of "what goes around comes around," and open sourcing my app is a way to give back to the community and foster trust and transparency in my work.
The Impact on Fleeting Notes
To be honest, I am not entirely certain of the impact that open sourcing my app, Fleeting Notes, will have. However, I am confident that it will have a positive impact on the community. In addition to the benefits previously mentioned, such as increased visibility and community engagement on Github, I anticipate that it will foster a stronger community and attract new users who are more inclined to try open-sourced projects. Ultimately, I believe that open-sourced apps are the future, and I am excited to be a part of it.
Also for those readers that made it to this point. Here's my github repository.