openhardware

Last year, Massimo, David Mellis, and I attended the Open Hardware Summit in New York, and began working with several others at the summit on a definition and statement of principles for producing open hardware. We’re happy to announce that after several months of discussion, writing, and debate, version 1.0 of the open source hardware definition and statement of principles has been released. Shepherded gently but fiercely by Ayah Bdeir, the definition is a good starting point to talk about what open source hardware is, what best practices are, and how the businesses making it work. My hope is that it will lead to more mainstream adoption of open source hardware practices.

 

Last month, when Microsoft launched Kinect, an accessory that lets players control Xbox 360 games by moving their bodies, Limor Fried posted a challenge on her company’s blog. Adafruit Industries, which sells do-it-yourself electronics kits, would give $1,000 to the first person to unlock Kinect’s sophisticated motion sensors from the Xbox so that any tinkerer could repurpose the technology for such projects as building robots. In a week Adafruit had a winner, a Spanish engineer who got Kinect to work with his laptop just hours after it was released in Europe. “Now it’s unlocked for creativity,” Fried wrote.

 

This Thursday [Sept 23, 2010] in New York, on the eve of Maker Faire, the Open Hardware Summit promises to break new ground. It features a packed schedule of thinkers from NASA to Texas Instruments to the Arduino project, and the introduction of a first working definition of open source hardware. Peter Kirn interviews project co-chairs Alicia Gibb and Ayah Bdeir about the origins and goals of the event, and some of the unique challenges of doing open source hardware.

 

So what exactly is open source hardware? We’re getting closer to a consensus definition, thanks to Ayah Bdeir and Eyebeam. A few months ago, she put together a workshop on open source hardware, and invited a group of people who are making businesses of it, along with some great legal practitioners working on open source issues.

 

Digital media artist and activist Joseph DeLappe discusses his work at the Museum of Modern Art.

 

Late Tuesday, a group of signatories including Wired magazine editor and DIY Drones' Chris Anderson, Phil Torrone of Make magazine, David Mellis of MIT Media Lab and Arduino, Limor Fried of Adafruit, and Ayah Bdeir of New York's Eyebeam publicly issued a formal definition of open-source hardware.

The basic elements of the standards are as follows: documentation; necessary software; derived works; free redistribution; attribution; no discrimination against persons or groups; no discrimination against fields of endeavor; distribution of license; license must not be specific to a product; license must not restrict other hardware or software; and license must be technology-neutral.

That is a definition that might be considered familiar to many who have read much about free-software licensing.

 
Start Date: 
22 Jul 2010
Hours: 
7:30-9PM (Discussion will start promptly at 7:30PM)
Cost: 
Suggested $5-10 donation
Venue: 
Eyebeam + http://eyebeam.org/live
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Moderated by Dustyn Roberts, Eyebeam

Disscussants: Bre Pettis, MakerBot; Giana González, Hacking Couture; Becky Stern, CRAFT and MAKE Magazines, Sternlab

 

A how to guide from Make blog on how to assemble your Cupcake CNC 3D printer

 

thinking about this stuff for our 7/22 OPEN RETAIL discussion

 
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