Originally Posted by theinvisibleduck
If not, I am mostly just concerned about getting it to work with other processors and 3G radios than it currently does, which are usually proprietary and may take funding to get access to. It really depends on what HP gives us to work with.
Let's look at this realistically, shall we? This is a long post and it's goes technical to an extent, but I think this will give some real understanding as to what all is involved in what the OP is proposing here, so bear with me and spread it around if you find it informative. It's not meant to crush dreams (although it may do so in the process), but actually give some context to the reality of what's being proposed.
Your first flaw is that you sound like you're taking up a "donation pool" to pay developers to do this, which is not how Kickstarter works at all; chances are high that Kickstarter wouldn't even allow it to be posted since they sanity-check each proposal for feasibility and the ability to deliver on your promises, and if you're promising you'll find other people to do the work for you and you're just the money guy, that just won't fly. The people that post their efforts and get accepted to solicit their proposals do the work themselves and/or lead the project from start to finish and have extraordinary subject matter experience in any case
. If you cross the threshold of whatever your limit is and can't deliver the product you've committed to delivering, well, I hope you have an awesome lawyer because you're going to need it.
However, if you plan to be the one getting their hands dirty and know you can absolutely deliver, though, by all means go for it...knowing that:
You also have to consider that almost every component webOS is unfamiliar with would also need drivers written for webOS to interface with, from the touchscreen drivers down to GPS chipsets, Wireless chipsets, audio chipsets, etc. Some of the existing drivers out there are closed-source, so they'd need to be written from scratch--and then interfaces written for them to work with webOS. And another big problem, even in Android-land: 4G radio drivers tend to be impossible to get and writing them from scratch is on the fine line of legality due to patents, encryption schemes, etc, which is why phones running CyanogenMod 7/9 tend not to have 4G capabilities on average. (It's rare that they do.)
Without the above drivers/interfaces, you have a nice brick that might be able to boot webOS but can't do anything else. Just like the Android phone that booted webOS as a proof of concept some months back--it couldn't do anything, either, except sit at the unlock screen. And, if you've used CM9 on the Touchpad, you know that even they couldn't get everything on the Touchpad working. It's just not that simple when you have literally thousands of components out there across hundreds of devices and a dearth of technical documentation and/or existing open-source drivers at your disposal to work from.
And, oh yeah, those drivers/interfaces you've built? They need to be bulletproof
unless you want the unit to crash hard or simply work sub-standard. So you need work of extremely high quality to ensure people aren't going to complain about how unusable everything is and go back to the device or mobile OS they initially left. Given the ongoing audio issues with the Touchpad, you can tell just how difficult that is when even the creators of the device, funded by hundreds of millions of dollars, couldn't solve that fundamental problem six iterations into webOS 3. (For a good time ask DocLee, creator of RadioTime for webOS, about the issues with audio we found way back even in webOS 1.x.)
I'm not even talking about the CPU or GPU, because that's an entirely different level of complexity higher than anything else listed above. That's serious business, and the people writing logic around CPUs and GPUs might as well be minting their own money because they'll never be wanting for a job.
So, you're probably asking, "How did Android get to the Touchpad so fast, then?" Getting Android on the Touchpad was "easy" because it shared the same CPU and a great deal of its hardware components with other Android devices (so drivers were readily available in many, but not all, cases--the touchscreen driver and compass being very notable exceptions). This is absolutely, in no certain terms, no longer the case when it comes to matching up CPUs or novel components to devices sold in the last 6 months and moving forward. Whole new ballgame, and now we're looking at leveraging quad-core processors and 1080p displays on smartphones not even 6 months from now, much less the "spec race" in store for tablets now that the iPad 3 is out.
Think I'm kidding? I just described Samsung's upcoming Galaxy S III
Before you even begin any of this, however, this obviously requires that you have an extremely good understanding of webOS--meaning the OS itself, from a technical, programmatic level--before you even get into driver/hardware interface development. WIthout that, you're pretty much shooting blindly and wasting everyone's time.
Additionally, on the money end of things, you might raise some money using Kickstarter, but chances are highly likely that you're not going to have enough money to come close to the demands of developers at the level this sort of work requires if you're not doing it yourself. People who can do this, unless they're doing it as a pure labor of love--think the type of people that work on CyanogenMod because they love Android and their community--generally make upwards of $150,000/year and beyond for those same skills if it's their career. And there aren't exactly a ton of qualified folks in the webOS community outside of webOS Internals that can do this caliber of work.
So it goes without saying that unless the developers you have in mind already give a really big
damn about webOS and have razor-sharp skills in this realm, they're gonna be asking for a good payout.
Your best bet is to wait and see what webOS Internals have up their sleeve lest you disappoint a whole ton of people by taking their money and not delivering. Having a Kickstarter sounds like a "cool thing" to do these days, but I'm not certain the people who are proposing them in the context of webOS understand fully what they're legally committing to. If OP were Rod himself, this would be one thing; anyone else should probably pretend they didn't even propose it.