Amidst the general ruckus created by MacHeist – not least due to John ‘Tell me what to think, John!’ Gruber’s posts – I’m surprised people haven’t noted the one thing that makes sense of it all.
To recap for the unawares: MacHeist bundled together a bunch of Mac OS X apps, some of which are rather well-known, for the princely sum of $49. There’s a charity contribution involved, but there’s been a bit of a hoo-hah about whether the developers are getting a fair deal or not. While there isn’t a consensus per se, one significant perspective is that they’re being fleeced for ongoing support costs while the MacHeist organisers rake it in.
So: for whom does it make sense? Developers whose products are approaching the end of their shelf lives, that’s who. Developers like Delicious Monster, who sold oodles of Delicious Library licenses early on, will likely have seen a fall-off of late, and are waiting for Leopard to release version 2. Or like Macromates, whose editor TextMate (a.) thoroughly rocks, and (b.) is due for a major upgrade along with… er… Leopard.
These developers will already have sold the bulk of what they might make off their current versions. Take a lump sum in exchange for getting word out to users who might otherwise not know about their application? Sounds like a deal, and potentially a very astute one on their part.
Me? I bought the bundle. RapidWeaver is probably useful to me, I should technically have a second TextMate license, Delicious Library I’ll likely use, and DEVONThink Personal I’d like to play with more before I decide between it and Yojimbo!. Pangea Arcade is plain fun; the rest I can live without, but might just use. It wasn’t a shoe-in, but worthwhile overall.