This is a really cool experiment! The idea is: give out grants to people who’ve already contributed in the past. The big advantage of this approach is that — even though it is still hard to determine how valuable a past contribution has been — it is way easier than determining how valuable a future contribution will be!
This is from Optimism Labs, a really interesting company led by Jing Wang, who worked at ECC early in her career.
You could imagine ZOMG — or the Zcash Dev Fund rules themselves — deciding to do an experiment like this and hand out ZEC to people who previously contributed unfunded, volunteer contributions to the Zcash community. That would be awesome.