Well, I'm beginning to wonder if I own this or not. I guess technically, I do, but the real work is done by all the volunteers. JavaRanch is huge, so JavaRanch has lots of bills. I pay those bills. The money the comes in from amazon helps. Currently JavaRanch has earned about one fifth of what it has cost, so it is still in the red. But! If I do nothing for a month, the income from the book sales at amazon does it exceed the day-to-day expenses. Naturally, there's lots of stuff that we want to do to expand the ranch and some of those things cost. Soon (probably Januaray), we'll upgrade the forum software. The upgrade is free, but to have it professionally installed so we have a minimum of down time will cost a few hundred bucks. We're opening up a new section to the ranch this month that has already cost a few hundred dollars. More about that later. A few weeks ago, our volunteers (mostly Bill Bozeman and Stephanie Grasson) set up the General Store which is nothing more than cheesy links to money grubbing companies that will kick a buck or two our way if you follow the link and spend money. Hopefully, this will help. I have found out that if we get those really obnoxious banner ads, JavaRanch can make $20,000 a month! As much as that is some very serious money, I think I might even stop coming to the ranch just to avoid those banners. We're trying to find some industry related banner sponsors, but no luck so far. JFind is doing a banner exchange with us, so that doesn't really help our finances. I think the ranch is very lucky to have such a great group of volunteers. Without them, this would be a very stagnant site!
Sorry to hear JavaRanch is costing you money. I guess that makes you a kind of Java philanthropist. Any thoughts about charging a nominal fee to defray your costs. I know this is a touchy subject but this site is so helpful to those learning Java it might just work.
Charging users for Java Ranch would not only be very offputting to new users, it would also be very difficult to administer, and would change the character of the place beyond recognition. The approach we are taking at the moment is to look into alternative ways of fundraising. We already have links to books at Amazon in the forum headers, and would really appreciate people taking the time to try out the General Store. If anyone has any other ideas for fundraising, we are happy to consider them, but keeping the open and accessible nature of the Ranch is paramount. I'm sure Paul would be happy to accept donations, though ...
I don't wanna do the charge thing. The folks that like it enough to give something are our moderators, sheriffs and a few generous ranch hands that have refused to be promoted With Angela and Jo's work on the bunkhouse book reviews, I think we might start seeing more income from that page.
Oh. I had assumed there was some giant corporation sponsoring this site. I did not know things were this bad. I have a suggestion to make which may be of some help. Why not publish javarach's own book on java. If you have enough volunteers let each one contribute one chapter. If you have atleast 15 to 20 volunteers, you have your book in no time. Make it an online edition in the beginning(taking the Bruce Eckel path). If it attracts enough attention you should be able to find a publisher soon enough. Rgds Sahir