Open Source Hardware (OSHW)
– Open source hardware is hardware that is built based on principles analogous to open source software. That is, open source hardware typically come with original design files that enable people to study them freely, make changes and share those changes with others. – techopedia When I was first introduced to the Open Source frame of thought I really was flaberghasted… I couldn’t believe that people (developers) would really spend hundreds or thousands of hours to build something amazing and then just give it all away for free for anybody to manipulate it by slapping their logo on it and selling it for a profit. It took me a while to learn some things about the different licenses available to attach to your open source project and why people are devoted to doing open source projects.
It has been explained to me in several different ways by people of various backgrounds:
– Open Source Hardcore: “EVERYTHING should be open, it’s not REAL if it’s not open!” – Wife of open source developer: “I dunno what he’s doing, but if it doesn’t make some money soon I’m OUT!” – Open source newbie: “This is awesome and I can see myself contributing to this to help change the world.” – Open source distributor: “It’s great, I get free products to develop upon without worrying about IP (intellectual property) issues.” Many people have different views on it, and I am still shaping mine everyday. I am excited about the thought of letting people remix my designs and make something awesome but at times I also think about how one day I’ll see one of my designs for sale at Toys’r’us, Best Buy or online and know that I might not be the one who put it there…
Some of the benefits of going open source for your project:
– Freedom to share your stuff – Open discussion and feedback – Improvements from the Open Source community – Knowing you are giving something back
The BotBQ is an open source project.
This means that you have the capability to build, and remix it yourself. It is a way for me to give back in a fun way to the community which I have learned so much from. OSHW links and resources: – OSHW logos – Open Source Hardware Association – RepRap Project