Open source version of Lunacy


Lunacy is a really great tool, and with Figma bought by Adobe, people will be looking for alternatives.

To help expedite development and feature improvements, have you considered open sourcing Lunacy? Perhaps is can work like this:

  • The core Lunacy, minus your APIs is filed under an open source model, it is given a different name
  • The commercial Lunacy app is based on the open source product, plus your APIs to your illustrations, cloud environment, etc.

This model is similar to Chromium and Chrome. It allows others to contribute, fix bugs and work off the backlog.

Thanks for your consideration.


Thanks for your suggestion! The thing is that at the moment we’re not ready to share Lunacy source files with the public. However, maybe we’ll come around to it in the future, so stay tuned :raised_hands:

Founder here.

That’s something we’re thinking about if not constantly, but once in a while.


  1. Obviously, the community could be a tremendous help, both in testing, fixing, and developing new features

  2. More publicity, better karma


  1. A distraction. We’re moving fast, fixing hundreds of bugs a month and developing several epics a quarter. By large epics, I mean:
  • Mac version

  • simultaneous editing

  • Figma import which is coming this month.

Going open source will require us to slow down our current development to manage the development by the community: respond, test, reject, fix, etc.

  1. Different skillset. We’re devs, designers, and QAs.

Imagine we have colossal community posting issues and code. That would be a more managerial role we’re not ready for and don’t enjoy. It would require a different team.

And if the community is small , why bother?

Chrome vs. Lunacy

Now, why does it work with Google Chrome? The analogy is super accurate, indeed.

Google wants to create a profitability desert around its core product, search. AdWords generated $200B in 2021, and Chrome is a free companion product. It assures there’s no one getting profit out of browsers, much less luring users to competitors.

Icons8 would like to create a profitability desert around icons and illustrations too. Unfortunately, we’re not a monopoly like Google and have 100x less revenue per employee. We should think twice before open-sourcing Lunacy.

Never say never

We don’t exclude that we’ll open-source Lunacy in the future. That would be a gesture of despair, probably. We’re far from it now.

So far, we’re investing the limited resources we get from selling our icons, illustrations, and AI tools. If you’d like to support us, contribute to Avalonia (we’re using it heavily) or buy something from us.

By the way, do you know the story of It used to be open source, but people started stealing it, removing copyrights, and publishing it under a different name. The author ended up closing the source in 2007.

Here’s the original post

I appreciated your well thought out initial response to my inquiry.

Regarding your second response, I know what you mean. Just look at how many times Linux was copied and published under a different name. People have even sold it on eBay. The one example you gave of how open source didn’t work for a project clearly shows how open source doesn’t have a future. I’m glad that you found a model that works for you.

As the article you linked to stated, was freeware and not under an open source model.

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