GnuPG and g10 code

Werner Koch wk at
Mon Dec 15 08:48:50 CET 2014


last week I basically finished the new infrastructure for
<> and posted a
new blog entry which you find below in plain text.  If anyone has an
interesting thing to say about GnuPG and related topics, drop me a note
and we can publish it there.  The blog part of the site has no comment
functions because I find it easier to have discussions by mail.




  After the release of GnuPG 1.0 in 1999 it turned out that this was not
  a write once and forget project.  The unrestricted availability of the
  software and public concerns about the acquirement of /PGP Inc./ by
  /NAI Inc./ (coincidentally at the time of the initial GnuPG release in
  December 1997) raised a lot of interest by those who always cared
  about privacy issues.

  Fortunately the funding of the Windows port by the German Ministry of
  Economics helped to finance the maintenance and further developments
  in 1999 and 2000.  After that I decided to keep on working on GnuPG
  full time and founded [g10^code GmbH] in 2001 as a legal framework for
  it.  The company is owned entirely by my brother [Walter] and myself
  and I like to thank him for his long time support and waive of profit
  distribution.  If you ever wondered about the name: /g10/ is a
  reference on the German constitution article on freedom of
  communication (Grundgesetz [Artikel 10]) and a pun on the [G-10] law
  which allows the secret services to bypass these constitutional
  guaranteed freedoms.

  The best known project of g10^code is probably version 2 of GnuPG,
  which started under the name /NewPG/ as part of the broader /Aegypten/
  project.  The main goal of Aegypten was to provide support for S/MIME
  under GNU/Linux and integrate that cleanly with other mail clients,
  most notably KMail.  This project was due to a public tender of the
  [BSI] (German federal office for information security) and awarded to
  a consortium of g10^code, [Intevation], and [KDAB].  Another large
  project is [Gpg4win] which has its roots in a port of GnuPG-2 to
  Windows done by g10^code as part of a health research project.
  Another tender awarded to the same consortium extended this port to
  the now mostly used GnuPG distribution for Windows.

  Now, how viable is it to run a company for the development of free
  security software?  Not very good I had to realize: the original plan
  of selling support contracts did not worked out too well due to the
  lack of resources for marketing.  Larger development projects raised
  most of the revenues but they are not easy to acquire.  In the last
  years we had problems to get new GnuPG related development contracts
  which turned the company into a one-person show by fall 2012.  I
  actually planned to shut it down in 2013 and to take a straight coder
  job somewhere.  However, as a side effect of Edward Snowden‘s brave
  actions, there was more public demand for privacy tools and thus I
  concluded that it is worth to keep on working on GnuPG.

   year  profit  wages  n  balance 
   2001  -12000  11000  2    31000 
   2002    3000  40000  3    32000 
   2003  -16000  26000  3    35000 
   2004    3000  45000  4    52000 
   2005       0  44000  4    56000 
   2006    2000  48000  3    49000 
   2007   50000  57000  2    99000 
   2008   11000  75000  3    94000 
   2009  -23000  72000  3    68000 
   2010   28000  74000  2    78000 
   2011  -41000  63000  2    81000 
   2012  -16000  54000  2    45000 
   2013  -10000  32000  1    44000 
   2014   12000  32000  1    47000 

  The table above is a summary of g10^{code}’s balance sheets (in Euro,
  2014 are estimations). /profit/ gives the annual net profit or loss,
  /wages/ are the gross salary costs for the /n/ employed developers,
  and /balance/ is the balance sheet total.  Despite of our low wages we
  accumulated an estimated loss of 9000 Euro over the last 3 years.  The
  crowdfunding campaign last year proved that there are many people who
  like to see GnuPG alive and maintained.  Despite the huge [costs] of
  the campaign it allowed me to keep working on GnuPG and I am confident
  that there will be ways to continue work in 2015.

  [g10^code GmbH]


  [Artikel 10]







Die Gedanken sind frei.  Ausnahmen regelt ein Bundesgesetz.

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