re: Do you pay to run any side projects? VIEW POST


I'm the maintainer of EasyFarm which is a free, open source farmbot for the game Final Fantasy XI. I started developing the program in 2012, but was released to the public in 2013, when there was no freely available botting program for the community. The program takes control of your video game character and farms virtual items, so that you can concentrate on the fun things in the game.

There's no way I could charge money for the program because:

  1. The memory reading API I use to interact with the game forbids it (and I greatly respect the man who built that library).
  2. Square Enix could sue the hell out of me and I'd be paying them for the rest of my life

I don't even play Final Fantasy XI anymore, but I develop the program, because there are users who still find value in it, but mostly because of my selfish desire to use the program as my personal test bed for new coding techniques.

Development on the program is no longer sustainable and I wish I had tried TDD sooner. Testing the program requires that the game be running and testing all the features takes way too longer. I've started using TDD, but have failed at realizing that dream of being able to test drive a feature and not introducing an AI bug.

Some days, I get really excited about adding big features and other days I feel bad about all the technical debt I've accrued. Many days, I cannot bring myself to even open GitHub, because of all the questions, comments or complaints that are waiting for answers. Occasionally, I get a comment like "Your program has helped me spend less time on the game and more time with my family" and that really raises my spirits. It's an emotional rollercoaster, but I still feel it's worth it.


Wow that's great, it's an amazing feeling when you really, truly help improve somebody's life like that.

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