NASA's WorldWind is both open source and "free as in beer." Our WorldWind.NET product is commercial software and, in general, does not come free of charge. Sometimes a prospective customer will ask:
"How can you charge for bindings for a free product?"
It would be nice not to, but we like keeping the lights on. We are reasonable people and if you are willing to work with us we will usually be able to come to an agreement that works for both sides.
What we can't do is put our integration technology into an open source project at this point. Too much of our revenue depends on license sales and you want us to be around to support our product.
There is not one licensing and pricing model that would allow us to accommodate all possible business scenarios together. We don't win if we price ourselves right out of the picture; we only win if we allow our customer to see a strong ROI from using WorldWind.NET.
A Starter Kit to Get You Going
The easiest and least expensive way to become a supported customer is to purchase a WorldWind.NET Starter Kit. A Starter Kit costs US$ 1,995 and includes
one developer license (required for every developer who codes directly against the WorldWind.NET types),
one year of maintenance and support, and
five counted deployments.
Each host that runs a WorldWind.NET-enabled GUI application counts as a deployment.
The Starter Kit is designed to allow you to do prolonged prototyping or to deploy small, group-sized applications. Except for maintenance and support, many customers never need anything beyond the Starter Kit.
Once you need more deployments than the five included in the Starter Kit package, you need to upgrade to a full developer license (by paying the price difference) and either purchase more counted deployment licenses or negotiate a custom deployment license with us (see below).
You lose the right to upgrade to a full developer license for the price difference if choose to let support lapse.
Three Components to Every Deal
Other than not wanting to give our product away for free, we have shown great flexibility in pricing and terms. We typically break a deal into three different components:
There is a one-time fee per licensed developer.
Any developer who directly codes against the WorldWind.NET bindings needs to be a licensed developer (see below for alternative model).
There is an (optional) fee for maintenance and support.
We strongly recommend that you purchase maintenance and support. Maintenance and support are only available as a package and you either purchase it for all developer licenses or for none. As a supported user you have access to tech support and minor and major product updates.
Without it, you will be on your own when you run into problems and you will not have access to any WorldWind.NET updates. If you choose to forgo maintenance and want a later version of WorldWind.NET you have to purchase a new developer license.
There is a deployment fee for any application that includes the WorldWind.NET runtime library.
You can count hosts or CPUs, but we try to avoid doing deals that involve counting. We much prefer negotiating a flat one-time or annual fee for your application.
While we typically have a firm price in mind for the first two components, this component is totally up for negotiation and will depend heavily on the business characteristics of your product.
You tell us what you're trying to do with WorldWind.NET and we try to give you a price that allows you to emphatically say "Yes" to our product.
If you are going to have many developers work directly with WorldWind.NET you might be better off with a code generator license. Code generator developer licenses cost more but they are only required for users of the code generator, not for users of the generated code (in this case, the WorldWind.NET proxy types).
We would still need to talk about how many developers you have when it comes to maintenance and support though. There is a big difference between supporting one Codemesh integration specialist who in turn supports your team vs. supporting all of your developers directly. Just talk with us and we will figure out the most cost effective solution for you.
We are very reasonable people—we have to be to still be in business after 20 years of selling a development tool—and we will do our best to come to an agreement on price.
Source Code License
We offer an optional commercial Source Code License for the purpose of enhancing, debugging, and porting. It doubles up as a source code escrow agreement by having provisions that grant you durable rights in the case of a Codemesh demise or a significant failure to uphold its obligations.
Feel free to contact us for more details.